Very Short Introductions

Very Short Introductions (VSI) are a book series published by the Oxford University Press (OUP). The books are concise introductions to particular subjects, intended for a general audience but written by experts. Most are under 200 pages long. While authors may present personal viewpoints, the books are meant to be "balanced and complete" as well as thought provoking.[1]

The series began in 1995, and by April 2018 there were 607 titles, published or announced.[2][3] The books have been commercially successful,[4] and have been published in more than 25 languages.[5] Institutions can subscribe to an online service to allow their users to read the books.[6]

Most of the books have been written specifically for the series, but around 60 were recycled from earlier OUP publications: several had been in OUP's Past Masters series, and numbers 17–24 used chapters from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain (1984).

List of books in the series

#TopicAuthor(s)UK print publication dateOriginal publicationCategory
001ClassicsMary Beard, John Henderson24 February 20001995
002MusicNicholas Cook24 February 20001998
003BuddhismDamien Keown24 February 2000
28 February 2013 (2nd ed.)
004Literary TheoryJonathan Culler24 February 2000
28 July 2011 (2nd ed.)
005HinduismKim Knott24 February 2000
1 May 2016 (2nd ed.)
006PsychologyGillian Butler, Freda McManus24 February 2000
23 January 2014 (2nd ed.)
007IslamMalise Ruthven24 February 2000
26 January 2012 (2nd ed.)
008PoliticsKenneth Minogue24 February 20001995
009TheologyDavid F. Ford24 February 2000
24 October 2013 (2nd ed.)
010ArchaeologyPaul Bahn (illustrator: Bill Tidy)24 February 2000
30 August 2012 (updated edition)
011JudaismNorman Solomon24 February 2000
28 August 2014 (2nd ed.)
012SociologySteve Bruce24 February 2000
27 September 2018 (2nd ed.)
013The KoranMichael Cook24 February 2000religion
014The BibleJohn Riches24 February 2000religion
015Social and Cultural AnthropologyJohn Monaghan, Peter Just24 February 2000
016HistoryJohn Arnold24 February 2000
017Roman BritainPeter Salway10 August 2000
1 August 2015 (2nd ed.)
Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
018The Anglo-Saxon AgeJohn Blair10 August 2000Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
019Medieval BritainJohn Gillingham, Ralph A. Griffiths10 August 2000Chapters from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
020The TudorsJohn Guy10 August 2000
29 August 2013 (2nd ed.)
Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
021Stuart BritainJohn Morrill10 August 2000Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
022Eighteenth-Century BritainPaul Langford10 August 2000Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
023Nineteenth-Century BritainChristopher Harvie, H. C. G. Matthew10 August 2000Chapters from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
024Twentieth-Century BritainKenneth O. Morgan10 August 2000Chapter from The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, 1984
025HeideggerMichael Inwood12 October 2000
24 January 2019 (2nd ed.)
Past Masters series, 1997philosophy
026Ancient PhilosophyJulia Annas12 October 2000philosophy
027SocratesC. C. W. Taylor12 October 2000
22 August 2019 (2nd ed.)
Past Masters series, 1998philosophy
028MarxPeter Singer12 October 2000
22 March 2018 (2nd ed.)
Past Masters series, 1980
029LogicGraham Priest12 October 2000
26 October 2017 (2nd ed.)
030DescartesTom Sorell12 October 2000Past Masters series, 1987philosophy
031MachiavelliQuentin Skinner12 October 2000
25 July 2019 (2nd ed.)
Past Masters series, 1981philosophy
032AristotleJonathan Barnes12 October 2000Past Masters series, 1982philosophy
033HumeA. J. Ayer12 October 2000Past Masters series, 1980philosophy
034NietzscheMichael Tanner19 October 2000Past Masters series, 1987philosophy
035DarwinJonathan Howard22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1982
036The European UnionJohn Pinder, Simon Usherwood22 February 2001
13 December 2007 (2nd ed.)
25 July 2013 (3rd ed.)
25 January 2018 (4th ed.)
037GandhiBhikhu Parekh22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1997
038AugustineHenry Chadwick22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1986philosophy
039IntelligenceIan J. Deary22 February 2001
040JungAnthony Stevens22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1994psychology
041BuddhaMichael Carrithers22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1983religion
042PaulE. P. Sanders22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1991religion
043Continental PhilosophySimon Critchley22 February 2001philosophy
044GalileoStillman Drake22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1980
045FreudAnthony Storr22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1989psychology
046WittgensteinA. C. Grayling22 February 2001Past Masters series, 1988philosophy
047Indian PhilosophySue Hamilton22 February 2001Non-VSI, 2000philosophy
048RousseauRobert Wokler23 August 2001Past Masters series, 1995philosophy
049HegelPeter Singer23 August 2001Past Masters series, 1983philosophy
050KantRoger Scruton23 August 2001Past Masters series, 1982philosophy
051CosmologyPeter Coles23 August 2001
052DrugsLeslie Iversen23 August 2001
23 June 2016 (2nd ed.)
053Russian LiteratureCatriona Kelly23 August 2001
054The French RevolutionWilliam Doyle23 August 2001
28 November 2019 (2nd ed.)
055PhilosophyEdward Craig21 February 2002Non-VSI, 2002philosophy
056BarthesJonathan Culler21 February 2002Modern Masters series, Fontana Press, 1983philosophy
057Animal RightsDavid DeGrazia21 February 2002
058KierkegaardPatrick Gardiner21 February 2002Past Masters series, 1988philosophy
059RussellA. C. Grayling21 February 2002Past Masters series, 1996philosophy
060Shakespeare[n 1]Germaine Greer21 February 2002Past Masters series, 1986
William Shakespeare[n 1]Stanley Wells23 April 2015
061ClausewitzMichael Howard21 February 2002Past Masters series, 1983
062SchopenhauerChristopher Janaway21 February 2002Past Masters series, 1994philosophy
063The Russian RevolutionS. A. Smith21 February 2002
064HobbesRichard Tuck30 May 2002Past Masters series, 1989philosophy
065World MusicPhilip V. Bohlman30 May 2002
January 2020 (2nd ed.)
066MathematicsTimothy Gowers22 August 2002mathematics
067Philosophy of ScienceSamir Okasha30 May 2002
28 July 2016 (2nd ed.)
068CryptographyFred Piper, Sean Murphy30 May 2002mathematics
069Quantum TheoryJohn Polkinghorne30 May 2002physics
070SpinozaRoger Scruton30 May 2002Past Masters series, 1986philosophy
071Choice TheoryMichael Allingham22 August 2002
072ArchitectureAndrew Ballantyne22 August 2002
073PoststructuralismCatherine Belsey22 August 2002
074PostmodernismChristopher Butler10 October 2002
075DemocracyBernard Crick10 October 2002
076EmpireStephen Howe22 August 2002
077FascismKevin Passmore22 August 2002
29 May 2014 (2nd ed.)
078TerrorismCharles Townshend10 October 2002
8 September 2011 (2nd ed.)
24 May 2018 (3rd ed.)
079PlatoJulia Annas13 February 2003philosophy
080EthicsSimon Blackburn8 May 2003Being Good: An Introduction to Ethics, 2001
rev. 2003
081EmotionDylan Evans13 February 2003
26 September 2019 (2nd ed.)
Emotion: The Science of Sentiment, 2001
082Northern IrelandMarc Mulholland23 January 2003The Longest War: Northern Ireland's Troubled History, 2002
083Art TheoryCynthia Freeland13 February 2003But Is It Art?: An Introduction to Art Theory, 2001
084LockeJohn Dunn8 May 2003Past Masters series, 1984philosophy
085Modern IrelandSenia Paseta27 March 2003
086GlobalizationManfred Steger27 March 2003
22 January 2009 (2nd ed.)
4 April 2013 (3rd ed.)
27 April 2017 (4th ed.)
087The Cold WarRobert J. McMahon27 March 2003
088The History of AstronomyMichael Hoskin8 May 2003
089SchizophreniaChris Frith, Eve C. Johnstone22 May 2003
090The EarthMartin Redfern26 June 2003
091EngelsTerrell Carver22 May 2003Past Masters series, 1981philosophy
092British PoliticsTony Wright22 May 2003
30 May 2013 (2nd ed.)
093LinguisticsP. H. Matthews24 April 2003
094The CeltsBarry Cunliffe26 June 2003
095IdeologyMichael Freeden26 June 2003
096PrehistoryChris Gosden26 June 2003
28 June 2018 (2nd ed.)
097Political PhilosophyDavid Miller26 June 2003
098PostcolonialismRobert J.C. Young26 June 2003
099AtheismJulian Baggini26 June 2003religion
100EvolutionBrian Charlesworth, Deborah Charlesworth26 June 2003
6 July 2017 (2nd ed.)
101MoleculesPhilip Ball27 November 2003Stories of the Invisible: A Guided Tour of Molecules, 2001chemistry
102Art HistoryDana Arnold22 January 2004
103Presocratic PhilosophyCatherine Osborne22 April 2004philosophy
104The ElementsPhilip Ball8 April 2004The Ingredients: A Guided Tour of the Elements, 2002chemistry
105Dada and SurrealismDavid Hopkins8 April 2004
106Egyptian MythGeraldine Pinch22 April 2004
107Christian ArtBeth Williamson24 June 2004
108CapitalismJames Fulcher13 May 2004
1 August 2015 (2nd ed.)
109Particle PhysicsFrank Close13 May 2004physics
110Free WillThomas Pink24 June 2004
111MythRobert A. Segal8 July 2004
1 September 2015 (2nd ed.)
112Ancient EgyptIan Shaw22 July 2004
113HieroglyphsPenelope Wilson12 August 2004Sacred Signs: Hieroglyphs in Ancient Egypt, 2003
114Medical EthicsTony Hope23 September 2004
22 November 2018 (2nd ed.)
115KafkaRitchie Robertson28 October 2004
116AnarchismColin Ward21 October 2004
117Ancient WarfareHarry Sidebottom25 November 2004
118Global WarmingMark Maslin25 November 2004
27 November 2008 (2nd ed.)
23 October 2014 (3rd ed.)
In the 3rd edition the title has changed to Climate Change
119ChristianityLinda Woodhead25 November 2004
4 September 2014 (2nd ed.)
120Modern ArtDavid Cottington24 February 2005
121ConsciousnessSusan Blackmore24 March 2005
14 September 2017 (2nd ed.)
122FoucaultGary Gutting24 March 2005
26 September 2019 (2nd ed.)
123The Spanish Civil WarHelen Graham24 March 2005
124The Marquis de SadeJohn Phillips28 July 2005philosophy
125HabermasGordon Finlayson26 May 2005philosophy
126SocialismMichael Newman28 July 2005
127DreamingJ. Allan Hobson21 April 2005Dreaming: An Introduction to the Science of Sleep, 2002
128DinosaursDavid Norman28 July 2005
28 December 2017 (2nd ed.)
129Renaissance ArtGeraldine A. Johnson21 April 2005
130Buddhist EthicsDamien Keown23 June 2005religion
131TragedyAdrian Poole11 August 2005
132SikhismEleanor Nesbitt22 September 2005
28 April 2016 (2nd ed.)
133The History of TimeLeofranc Holford-Strevens11 August 2005
134NationalismSteven Grosby8 September 2005
135The World Trade OrganizationAmrita Narlikar8 September 2005
136DesignJohn Heskett23 June 2005Toothpicks and Logos: Design in Everyday Life, 2002
137The VikingsJulian D. Richards8 September 2005
138FossilsKeith Thomson13 October 2005
139JournalismIan Hargreaves15 September 2005
28 August 2014 (2nd ed.)
Journalism: Truth or Dare?, 2003
140The CrusadesChristopher Tyerman13 October 2005Fighting for Christendom: Holy War and the Crusades, 2004religion
141FeminismMargaret Walters27 October 2005
142Human EvolutionBernard Wood3 November 2005
27 June 2019 (2nd ed.)
143The Dead Sea ScrollsTimothy Lim24 November 2005
23 March 2017 (2nd ed.)
144The BrainMichael O'Shea8 December 2005biology
145Global CatastrophesBill McGuire26 January 2006
28 August 2014 (2nd ed.)
A Guide to the End of the World: Everything You Never Wanted to Know, 2002
146Contemporary ArtJulian Stallabrass23 March 2006
January 2020 (2nd ed.)
Art Incorporated: The Story of Contemporary Art, 2004
147Philosophy of LawRaymond Wacks18 May 2006
27 February 2014 (2nd ed.)
148The RenaissanceJerry Brotton27 April 2006The Renaissance Bazaar: From the Silk Road to Michelangelo, 2002
149AnglicanismMark Chapman22 June 2006religion
150The Roman EmpireChristopher Kelly24 August 2006
151PhotographySteven Edwards24 August 2006
152PsychiatryTom Burns21 September 2006
25 October 2018 (2nd ed.)
153ExistentialismThomas Flynn12 October 2006philosophy
154The First World WarMichael Howard25 January 2007Non-VSI, 2002
155FundamentalismMalise Ruthven25 January 2007Fundamentalism: The Search for Meaning, 2004
156EconomicsPartha Dasgupta22 February 2007
157International MigrationKhalid Koser22 February 2007
23 June 2016 (2nd ed.)
158NewtonRob Iliffe25 January 2007
159ChaosLenny Smith22 February 2007
160African HistoryJohn Parker, Richard Rathbone22 March 2007
161RacismAli Rattansi22 March 2007
162KabbalahJoseph Dan30 August 2007Non-VSI, 2006religion
163Human RightsAndrew Clapham28 June 2007
1 February 2016 (2nd ed.)
164International RelationsPaul Wilkinson26 July 2007
165The American PresidencyCharles O. Jones11 October 2007
23 June 2016 (2nd ed.)
166The Great Depression and New DealEric Rauchway24 April 2008
167Classical MythologyHelen Morales23 August 2007religion
168The New Testament as LiteratureKyle Keefer27 November 2008religion
169American Political Parties and ElectionsL. Sandy Maisel27 September 2007
23 June 2016 (2nd ed.)
170BestsellersJohn Sutherland25 October 2007
171GeopoliticsKlaus Dodds25 October 2007
26 June 2014 (2nd ed.)
25 July 2019 (3rd ed.)
172AntisemitismSteven Beller22 November 2007
1 December 2015 (2nd ed.)
173Game TheoryKen Binmore25 October 2007
174HIV/AIDSAlan Whiteside24 January 2008
24 November 2016 (2nd ed.)
175Documentary FilmPatricia Aufderheide24 January 2008
176Modern ChinaRana Mitter28 February 2008
1 April 2016 (2nd ed.)
177The QuakersPink Dandelion28 February 2008religion
178German LiteratureNicholas Boyle28 February 2008
179Nuclear WeaponsJoseph M. Siracusa20 March 2008
23 April 2015 (2nd ed.)
180LawRaymond Wacks27 March 2008
1 February 2016 (2nd ed.)
181The Old TestamentMichael Coogan22 May 2008religion
182GalaxiesJohn Gribbin27 March 2008
183MormonismRichard Bushman26 June 2008religion
184Religion in AmericaTimothy Beal25 September 2008religion
185GeographyJohn A. Matthews, David T. Herbert22 May 2008
186The Meaning of LifeTerry Eagleton24 April 2008Non-VSI, 2007philosophy
187SexualityVeronique Mottier24 April 2008
188Nelson MandelaElleke Boehmer17 July 2008
189Science and ReligionThomas Dixon24 July 2008
190RelativityRussell Stannard24 July 2008physics
191The History of MedicineWilliam Bynum31 July 2008
192CitizenshipRichard Bellamy25 September 2008
193The History of LifeMichael J. Benton27 November 2008
194MemoryJonathan K. Foster6 November 2008
195AutismUta Frith23 October 2008
196StatisticsDavid J. Hand23 October 2008mathematics
197ScotlandRab Houston27 November 2008
198CatholicismGerald O'Collins27 November 2008
25 May 2017 (2nd ed.)
199The United NationsJussi M. Hanhimäki30 October 2008
2 June 2015 (2nd ed.)
200Free SpeechNigel Warburton26 February 2009
201The Apocryphal GospelsPaul Foster26 February 2009religion
202Modern JapanChristopher Goto-Jones23 April 2009
203LincolnAllen C. Guelzo26 February 2009
204SuperconductivityStephen J. Blundell28 May 2009physics
205NothingFrank Close25 June 2009The Void, 2007
206BiographyHermione Lee9 July 2009
207The Soviet UnionStephen Lovell23 July 2009
208Writing and ScriptAndrew Robinson27 August 2009
209CommunismLeslie Holmes27 August 2009
210FashionRebecca Arnold22 October 2009
211Forensic ScienceJim Fraser25 February 2010
212PuritanismFrancis J. Bremer24 September 2009religion
213The ReformationPeter Marshall22 October 2009religion
214Thomas AquinasFergus Kerr5 November 2009religion
215DesertsNick Middleton26 November 2009
216The Norman ConquestGeorge Garnett26 November 2009
217Biblical ArchaeologyEric H. Cline26 November 2009
218The Reagan RevolutionGil Troy3 December 2009
219The Book of MormonTerryl Givens21 January 2010religion
220Islamic HistoryAdam J. Silverstein21 January 2010
221PrivacyRaymond Wacks21 January 2010
26 March 2015 (2nd ed.)
222NeoliberalismManfred Steger, Ravi K. Roy21 January 2010
223ProgressivismWalter Nugent25 February 2010
224EpidemiologyRodolfo Saracci25 February 2010
225InformationLuciano Floridi25 February 2010
226The Laws of ThermodynamicsPeter Atkins25 March 2010Four Laws That Drive the Universe, 2007physics
227InnovationMark Dodgson, David Gann25 March 2010
23 August 2018 (2nd ed.)
228WitchcraftMalcolm Gaskill25 March 2010
229The New TestamentLuke Timothy Johnson22 April 2010religion
230French LiteratureJohn D. Lyons22 April 2010
231Film MusicKathryn Kalinak27 May 2010
232DruidsBarry Cunliffe27 May 2010
233German PhilosophyAndrew Bowie27 May 2010philosophy
234AdvertisingWinston Fletcher24 June 2010
235Forensic PsychologyDavid Canter17 June 2010
236ModernismChristopher Butler29 July 2010philosophy
237LeadershipKeith Grint29 July 2010
238Christian EthicsD. Stephen Long29 July 2010
239TocquevilleHarvey Mansfield24 June 2010
240Landscapes and GeomorphologyAndrew Goudie, Heather Viles26 August 2010
241Spanish LiteratureJo Labanyi26 August 2010
242DiplomacyJoseph M. Siracusa26 August 2010
243North American IndiansTheda Perdue, Michael D. Green26 August 2010
244The U.S. CongressDonald Ritchie10 June 2010
22 September 2016 (2nd ed.)
245RomanticismMichael Ferber23 September 2010
246UtopianismLyman Tower Sargent23 September 2010
247The BluesElijah Wald24 June 2010
248KeynesRobert Skidelsky7 October 2010
249English LiteratureJonathan Bate7 October 2010
250AgnosticismRobin LePoidevin28 October 2010
251AristocracyWilliam Doyle25 November 2010
252Martin LutherScott H. Hendrix21 October 2010
253Michael FaradayFrank A.J.L. James25 November 2010
254PlanetsDavid A. Rothery25 November 2010
255PentecostalismWilliam K. Kay27 January 2011religion
256HumanismStephen Law27 January 2011
257Folk MusicMark Slobin24 February 2011
258Late AntiquityGillian Clark24 February 2011
259GeniusAndrew Robinson24 February 2011
260NumbersPeter M. Higgins24 February 2011mathematics
261MuhammadJonathan A.C. Brown24 March 2011religion
262BeautyRoger Scruton24 March 2011Non-VSI, 2009
263Critical TheoryStephen Eric Bronner5 May 2011
26 October 2017 (2nd ed.)
264OrganizationsMary Jo Hatch24 March 2011
265Early MusicThomas Forrest Kelly9 June 2011
266The Scientific RevolutionLawrence M. Principe28 April 2011
267CancerNick James26 May 2011
268Nuclear PowerMaxwell Irvine26 May 2011
269PaganismOwen Davies26 May 2011religion
270RiskBaruch Fischhoff, John Kadvany26 May 2011
271Science FictionDavid Seed23 June 2011
272HerodotusJennifer T. Roberts23 June 2011
273ConsciencePaul Strohm23 June 2011
274American ImmigrationDavid A. Gerber23 June 2011
275JesusRichard Bauckham28 July 2011religion
276VirusesDorothy H. Crawford28 July 2011
22 March 2018
277ProtestantismMark A. Noll25 August 2011religion
278DerridaSimon Glendinning25 August 2011philosophy
279MadnessAndrew T. Scull25 August 2011
280Developmental BiologyLewis Wolpert25 August 2011biology
281DictionariesLynda Mugglestone18 August 2011
282Global Economic HistoryRobert C. Allen15 September 2011
283MulticulturalismAli Rattansi22 September 2011
284Environmental EconomicsStephen Smith22 September 2011
285The CellTerence Allen, Graham Cowling29 September 2011biology
286Ancient GreecePaul Cartledge27 October 2011
287AngelsDavid Albert Jones27 October 2011
288Children's LiteratureKimberley Reynolds6 October 2011
289The Periodic TableEric R. Scerri27 October 2011
25 July 2019 (2nd ed.)
290Modern FranceVanessa R. Schwartz27 October 2011
291RealityJan Westerhoff24 November 2011
292The ComputerDarrel Ince24 November 2011
293The Animal KingdomPeter Holland24 November 2011
294Colonial Latin American LiteratureRolena Adorno24 November 2011
295SleepSteven W. Lockley, Russell G. Foster22 March 2012
296The AztecsDavid Carrasco26 January 2012
297The Cultural RevolutionRichard Curt Kraus26 January 2012
298Modern Latin American LiteratureRoberto González Echevarría26 January 2012
299MagicOwen Davies26 January 2012
300FilmMichael Wood26 January 2012
301The ConquistadorsMatthew Restall, Felipe Fernández-Armesto23 February 2012
302Chinese LiteratureSabina Knight23 February 2012
303Stem CellsJonathan Slack23 February 2012biology
304Italian LiteraturePeter Hainsworth, David Robey23 February 2012
305The History of Mathematics Jacqueline Stedall23 February 2012
306The U.S. Supreme CourtLinda Greenhouse22 March 2012
307PlaguePaul Slack22 March 2012
308Russian HistoryGeoffrey Hosking29 March 2012
309EngineeringDavid Blockley22 March 2012
310ProbabilityJohn Haigh26 April 2012mathematics
311RiversNick Middleton26 April 2012
312PlantsTimothy Walker26 April 2012
313AnaesthesiaAidan O'Donnell26 April 2012
314The MongolsMorris Rossabi26 April 2012
315The DevilDarren Oldridge31 May 2012
316ObjectivityStephen Gaukroger24 May 2012philosophy
317MagnetismStephen J. Blundell28 June 2012physics
318AnxietyDaniel Freeman, Jason Freeman31 May 2012
319AustraliaKenneth Morgan31 May 2012
320LanguagesStephen Anderson28 June 2012
321Magna CartaNicholas Vincent28 June 2012
322StarsAndrew King26 July 2012
323The AntarcticKlaus Dodds26 July 2012
324RadioactivityClaudio Tuniz26 July 2012
325TrustKatherine Hawley23 August 2012
326MetaphysicsStephen Mumford30 August 2012philosophy
327The Roman RepublicDavid M. Gwynn30 August 2012
328BordersAlexander C. Diener, Joshua Hagen27 September 2012
329The GothicNick Groom27 September 2012
330RoboticsAlan Winfield27 September 2012
331Civil EngineeringDavid Muir Wood27 September 2012
332The OrchestraD. Kern Holoman25 October 2012
333GovernanceMark Bevir25 October 2012
334American HistoryPaul S. Boyer9 August 2012
335NetworksGuido Caldarelli, Michele Catanzaro25 October 2012
336SpiritualityPhilip Sheldrake29 November 2012
337WorkStephen Fineman29 November 2012
338MartyrdomJolyon Mitchell29 November 2012
339Colonial AmericaAlan Taylor29 November 2012
340RastafariEnnis B. Edmonds20 December 2012religion
341ComedyMatthew Bevis20 December 2012
342The Avant-GardeDavid Cottington31 January 2013
343ThoughtTim Bayne31 January 2013
344The Napoleonic WarsMike Rapport31 January 2013
345Medical LawCharles Foster28 February 2013
346RhetoricRichard Toye28 March 2013
347EducationGary Thomas28 March 2013
348MaoDelia Davin25 April 2013
349The British ConstitutionMartin Loughlin25 April 2013
350American PoliticsRichard M. Valelly28 March 2013
351The Silk RoadJames A. Millward26 April 2013
352BacteriaSebastian G. B. Amyes30 May 2013
353Symmetry Ian Stewart30 May 2013mathematics
354Marine BiologyPhilip V. Mladenov26 September 2013biology
355The British EmpireAshley Jackson30 May 2013
356The Trojan WarEric H. Cline30 May 2013
357MalthusDonald Winch27 June 2013
358ClimateMark Maslin27 June 2013
359The Palestinian–Israeli ConflictMartin Bunton29 August 2013
360HappinessDaniel M. Haybron29 August 2013
361DiasporaKevin Kenny25 July 2013
362Contemporary FictionRobert Eaglestone25 July 2013
363Modern WarRichard English25 July 2013
364The BeatsDavid Sterritt25 July 2013
365SociolinguisticsJohn Edwards25 July 2013
366FoodJohn Krebs26 September 2013
367FractalsKenneth Falconer26 September 2013mathematics
368ManagementJohn Hendry24 October 2013
369International SecurityChristopher S. Browning24 October 2013
370AstrobiologyDavid C. Catling24 October 2013biology
371CausationStephen Mumford, Rani Lill Anjum28 November 2013
372EntrepreneurshipPaul Westhead, Mike Wright28 November 2013
373Tibetan BuddhismMatthew T. Kapstein24 October 2013
374The Ancient Near EastAmanda H. Podany26 December 2013
375American Legal HistoryG. Edward White28 November 2013
376EthnomusicologyTimothy Rice23 January 2014
377African ReligionsJacob K. Olupona13 March 2014religion
378HumourNoël Carroll23 January 2014
379Family LawJonathan Herring27 February 2014
380The Ice AgeJamie Woodward30 January 2014
381RevolutionsJack A. Goldstone26 December 2013
382Classical LiteratureWilliam Allan27 March 2014
383AccountingChristopher Nobes27 March 2014
384TeethPeter S. Ungar27 March 2014
385Physical ChemistryPeter Atkins24 April 2014chemistry
386MicroeconomicsAvinash Dixit24 April 2014
387Landscape ArchitectureIan Thompson29 May 2014
388The EyeMichael F. Land29 May 2014biology
389The EtruscansChristopher Smith29 May 2014
390NutritionDavid Bender26 June 2014
391Coral ReefsCharles Sheppard26 June 2014
392ComplexityJohn H. Holland24 July 2014
393Alexander the GreatHugh Bowden24 July 2014
394HormonesMartin Luck24 July 2014
395ConfucianismDaniel K. Gardner26 June 2014philosophy
396American SlaveryHeather Andrea Williams25 September 2014
397African American ReligionEddie S. Glaude Jr.28 August 2014
398GodJohn Bowker25 September 2014
399GenesJonathan Slack25 September 2014biology
400KnowledgeJennifer Nagel25 September 2014
401Structural EngineeringDavid Blockley25 September 2014
402TheatreMarvin Carlson23 October 2014
403Ancient Egyptian Art and ArchitectureChristina Riggs23 October 2014
404The Middle AgesMiri Rubin23 October 2014
405MaterialsChristopher Hall23 October 2014
406MineralsDavid Vaughan23 October 2014
407PeaceOliver P. Richmond27 November 2014
408IranAli Ansari27 November 2014
409World War IIGerhard L. Weinberg13 November 2014
410Child PsychologyUsha Goswami27 November 2014psychology
411SportMike Cronin27 November 2014
412ExplorationStewart A. Weaver12 March 2015
413MicrobiologyNicholas P. Money4 December 2014biology
414Corporate Social ResponsibilityJeremy Moon11 December 2014
415LoveRonald de Sousa8 January 2015
416PsychotherapyTom Burns (Author), Eva Burns-Lundgren (Editor)22 January 2015psychology
417ChemistryPeter Atkins26 February 2015chemistry
418Human AnatomyLeslie Klenerman26 February 2015
419The American WestStephen Aron11 December 2014
420American Political HistoryDonald Critchlow25 December 2014
421RitualBarry Stephenson22 January 2015
422American Women's HistorySusan Ware22 January 2015
423DantePeter Hainsworth, David Robey26 February 2015
424Ancient AssyriaKaren Radner26 March 2015
425Plate TectonicsPeter Molnar26 March 2015
426CorruptionLeslie Holmes23 April 2015
427PilgrimageIan Reader23 April 2015
428TaxationStephen Smith23 April 2015
429Crime FictionRichard Bradford28 May 2015
430MicroscopyTerence Allen1 August 2015
431ForestsJaboury Ghazoul1 August 2015
432Social WorkStanley Wells1 August 2015
433Infectious DiseaseBenjamin Bolker and Marta Wayne1 August 2015
434LiberalismMichael Freeden1 August 2015
435PsychoanalysisDaniel Pick1 November 2015psychology
436The American RevolutionRobert J. Allison31 July 2015
437ByzantiumPeter Sarris1 October 2015
438Nuclear PhysicsFrank Close1 October 2015physics
439Social PsychologyRichard J. Crisp1 November 2015psychology
440WaterJohn Finney1 November 2015
441Criminal JusticeJulian V. Roberts1 November 2015
442Medieval LiteratureElaine Treharne1 December 2015
443The EnlightenmentJohn Robertson1 December 2015
444MountainsMartin F. Price1 December 2015
445Philosophy in the Islamic WorldPeter Adamson1 November 2015philosophy
446Light Ian A. Walmsley1 December 2015physics
447AlgebraPeter M. Higgins1 December 2015mathematics
448HermeneuticsJens Zimmermann15 December 2015
449International LawVaughan Lowe1 February 2016
450MoonsDavid Rothery1 January 2016
451SoundMike Goldsmith10 February 2016physics
452EpicureanismCatherine Wilson1 February 2016
453Black holes[7]Katherine Blundell1 February 2016physics
454The BodyChris Shilling1 March 2016
455FungiNicolas P. Money1 April 2016
456The History of ChemistryWilliam H. Brock1 April 2016chemistry
457Environmental PoliticsAndrew Dobson1 March 2016
458Modern DramaKirsten E. Shepherd-Barr1 May 2016
459The Mexican RevolutionAlan Knight1 April 2016
460The Founding FathersRichard B. Bernstein14 December 2015
461HollywoodPeter Decherney27 January 2016
462GoetheRitchie Robertson1 April 2016
463Medieval PhilosophyJohn Marenbon1 April 2016philosophy
464Earth System ScienceTim Lenton25 February 2016
465SlangJonathon Green25 February 2016
466Computer ScienceSubrata Dasgupta24 March 2016
467Shakespeare's ComediesBart van Es24 March 2016
468The Welfare StateDavid Garland24 March 2016
469CrystallographyA. M. Glazer24 March 2016chemistry
470AstrophysicsJames Binney24 March 2016physics
471The BRICSAndrew F. Cooper28 April 2016
472DecolonizationDane Kennedy28 April 2016
473AgriculturePaul Brassley, Richard Soffe28 April 2016
474CombinatoricsRobin Wilson28 April 2016mathematics
475AdolescencePeter Smith26 May 2016
476IsotopesRob Ellam19 May 2016
477SavannasPeter Furley23 June 2016
478The Hebrew Bible As LiteratureTod Linafelt3 March 2016
479The Harlem RenaissanceCheryl A. Wall25 August 2016
480BabyloniaTrevor Bryce22 September 2016
481LearningMark Haselgrove28 July 2016
482Public Health Virginia Berridge28 July 2016
483Indian CinemaAshish Rajadhyaska28 July 2016
484Public AdministrationStella Z. Theodoulou, Ravi K. Roy25 August 2016
485Molecular BiologyAysha Divan, Janice Royds25 August 2016biology
486BloodChristopher Cooper22 September 2016biology
487CopernicusOwen Gingerich11 August 2016
488Military JusticeEugene R. Fidell27 October 2016
489Cognitive NeuroscienceRichard Passingham22 September 2016
490LeibnizMaria Rosa Antognazza22 September 2016philosophy
491War and TechnologyAlex Roland27 October 2016
492PandemicsChristian W. McMillen8 December 2016
493TranslationMatthew Reynolds27 October 2016
494Modern ItalyAnna Cento Bull27 October 2016
495EugenicsPhilippa Levine26 January 2017
496AgeingNancy Pachana24 November 2016
497Asian American HistoryMadeline Y. Hsu26 January 2017
498HomeMichael Allen Fox8 December 2016
499CalvinismJon Balserak8 December 2016religion
500MeasurementDavid J. Hand6 October 2016
501TelescopesGeoffrey Cottrell8 December 2016
502RocksJan Zalasiewicz8 December 2016
503BankingJohn O. S. Wilson, John Goddard8 December 2016
504DepressionMary Jane Tacchi, Jan Scott26 January 2017
505Behavioural EconomicsMichelle Baddeley26 January 2017
506WeatherStorm Dunlop26 January 2017
507ZionismMichael Stanislawski8 December 2016religion
508Intellectual PropertySiva Vaidhyanathan23 March 2017
509The Industrial RevolutionRobert C. Allen23 February 2017
510PopulismCas Mudde, Cristsbal Rovia Kalwasser23 February 2017
511VoltaireNicholas Cronk23 February 2017philosophy
512GravityTimothy Clifton23 February 2017physics
513Animal BehaviourTristram D. Wyatt23 February 2017
514NavigationJim Bennett23 February 2017
515The Habsburg EmpireMartyn Rady23 March 2017
516The FutureJennifer Gidley23 March 2017
517Circadian RhythmsRussell Foster, Leon Kreitzman23 March 2017
518The AtmospherePaul Palmer23 March 2017
519Infinity Ian Stewart23 March 2017
520Organic ChemistryGraham Patrick23 March 2017chemistry
521Clinical PsychologySusan Llewellyn, Katie Aafjes-van Doorn27 April 2017psychology
522Shakespeare's TragediesStanley Wells27 April 2017
523Military StrategyAntulio Joseph Echevarria23 February 2017
524European Union LawAnthony Arnull25 May 2017
525MultilingualismJohn C. Maher25 May 2017
526Jewish HistoryDavid N. Myers25 May 2017
527BrandingRobert Jones22 June 2017
528PainRob Bodice27 July 2017
529OceansDorrik Stow27 July 2017
530UtilitarianismKatarzyna de Lazari-Radek, Peter Singer27 July 2017
531FreemasonryAndreas Önnerfors24 August 2017religion
532HeredityJohn Waller24 August 2017
533Thinking and ReasoningJonathan Evans28 September 2017
534Shakespeare's Sonnets and PoemsJonathan F. S. Post28 September 2017
535MammalsT. S. Kemp28 September 2017
536Environmental LawElizabeth Fisher26 October 2017
537ProjectsAndrew Davies26 October 2017
538PerceptionBrian J. Rogers26 October 2017
539Big DataDawn E. Holmes23 November 2017
540Modern IndiaCraig Jeffrey23 November 2017
541MiraclesYujin Nagasawa23 November 2017religion
542Analytic PhilosophyMichael Beaney23 November 2017
543The History of CinemaGeoffrey Nowell-Smith23 November 2017
544The Immune SystemPaul Klenerman30 November 2017
545Universities and CollegesDavid Palfreyman, Paul Temple28 December 2017
546MonasticismStephen J. Davis25 January 2018religion
547LakesWarwick F. Vincent25 January 2018
548The Hellenistic AgePeter Thonemann22 February 2018
549The History of PhysicsJ. L. Heilbron25 January 2018physics
550Fairy TaleMarina Warner22 February 2018
551The English LanguageSimon Horobin25 January 2018
552Philosophy of ReligionTim Bayne22 February 2018religion
553Organized CrimeGeorgios A. Antonopoulos, Georgios Papanicolaou22 February 2018
554Veterinary ScienceJames Yeates22 February 2018
555Applied MathematicsAlain Goriely22 February 2018mathematics
556Comparative LiteratureBen Hutchinson22 March 2018
557DevelopmentIan Goldin22 March 2018
558AnthropoceneErle C. Ellis22 March 2018
559GenomicsJohn M. Archibald22 March 2018
560GeophysicsWilliam Lowrie22 March 2018physics
561Native American LiteratureSean Teuton19 January 2018
562Southeast AsiaJames R. Rush24 May 2018
563CriminologyTim Newburn26 April 2018
564American Naval HistoryCraig L. Symonds24 May 2018
565DemographySarah Harper24 May 2018
566The U.S. ConstitutionDavid J. Bodenhamer8 June 2018
567DecadenceDavid Weir22 March 2018
568Sexual SelectionMarlene Zuk, Leigh W Simmons23 August 2018
569The Holy Roman EmpireJoachim Whaley26 July 2018
570StoicismBrad Inwood26 July 2018philosophy
571PovertyPhilip N. Jefferson26 July 2018
572AutobiographyLaura Marcus26 July 2018
573Synthetic BiologyJamie A. Davies26 July 2018biology
574GeologyJan Zalasiewicz26 July 2018
575Artificial IntelligenceMargaret A. Boden23 August 2018
576The Book of Common PrayerBrian Cummings23 August 2018religion
577American Cultural HistoryEric Avila25 October 2018
578AbolitionismRichard S. Newman6 September 2018
579The Psychology of MusicElizabeth Hellmuth Margulis27 December 2018
580SaintsSimon Yarrow20 September 2018religion
581African PoliticsIan Taylor27 September 2018
582Adam SmithChristopher J. Berry25 October 2018philosophy
583GlaciationDavid J. A. Evans25 October 2018
584TypographyPaul Luna22 November 2018
585Environmental EthicsRobin Attfield13 December 2018
586NapoleonDavid A. Bell22 November 2018
587Modern ArchitectureAdam Sharr22 November 2018
588BiometricsMichael Fairhurst20 November 2018
589The History of ChildhoodJames Marten25 October 2018
590WavesMike Goldsmith22 November 2018
591C. S. LewisJames Como24 January 2019
592Mathematical FinanceMark H. A. Davis24 January 2019
593IdentityFlorian Coulmas28 February 2019
594Charles DickensJenny Hartley28 February 2019
595Garden HistoryGordon Campbell15 February 2019
596ReptilesTom Kemp24 January 2019
597Film NoirJames Naremore28 February 2019
598HomerBarbara Graziosi28 March 2019Homer, 2016
599MatterGeoff Cottrell28 March 2019
600ReadingBelinda Jack18 April 2019
601Concentration CampsDan Stone28 March 2019Concentration Camps: A Short History, 2017
602MethodismWilliam J. Abraham25 April 2019religion
603DyslexiaMargaret J. Snowling23 May 2019
604Leo TolstoyLiza Knapp24 May 2019
605ExtinctionPaul B. Wignall27 June 2019
606PhysicsSidney Perkowitz25 July 2019physics
607The Treaty of VersaillesMichael S. Neiberg25 April 2019
608SynaesthesiaJulia Simner27 June 2019
609American Foreign RelationsAndrew Preston25 July 2019
610SecularismAndrew Copson11 July 2019Secularism: Politics, Religion, and Freedom, 2017
611Geoffrey ChaucerDavid Wallace22 August 2019Geoffrey Chaucer: A New Introduction, 2017
612Nazi GermanyJane Caplan25 July 2019
613ScepticismDuncan Pritchard26 September 2019
614PoetryBernard O'Donoghue26 September 2019
615Orthodox ChristianityA. Edward Siecienski22 August 2019
616AestheticsBence Nanay24 October 2019
617DynastyJeroen Duindam24 October 2019
618PsychopathyEssi Viding24 October 2019psychology
619Philosophy of BiologySamir Okasha28 November 2019biology
620Energy SystemsNick Jenkins28 November 2019
621TidesDavid George Bowers, Emyr Martyn Roberts28 November 2019
622TopologyRichard Earl12 December 2019mathematics
FederalismMark J. Rozell, Clyde Wilcox26 December 2019
KoreaMichael J. Seth23 January 2020
SuperstitionStuart Vyse23 January 2020
TrigonometryGlen Van Brummelen23 January 2020mathematics
Country musicRichard Carlin23 January 2020
Niels BohrJ. L. Heilbron23 January 2020
British CinemaCharles Barr26 November 2020

Boxed sets

Six boxed sets, each with a different theme, were released in 2006. Five books from the series on the given theme were included, plus the series' promotional volume A Very Short Introduction to Everything.

  • The Ballot Box
    • Politics (008)
    • Capitalism (108)
    • Democracy (075)
    • Socialism (126)
    • Fascism (077)
  • The Brain Box
    • Evolution (100)
    • Consciousness (121)
    • Intelligence (039)
    • Cosmology (051)
    • Quantum Theory (069)
  • The Thought Box
    • Hegel (049)
    • Marx (028)
    • Nietzsche (034)
    • Schopenhauer (062)
    • Kierkegaard (058)
  • The Basics Box
    • Philosophy (055)
    • Mathematics (066)
    • History (016)
    • Politics (008)
    • Psychology (006)
  • The Boom Box
    • Ancient Warfare (117)
    • Cold War (087)
    • Crusades (140)
    • French Revolution (054)
    • Spanish Civil War (123)
  • The Picture Box
    • Art History (102)
    • Renaissance Art (129)
    • Modern Art (120)
    • Architecture (072)
    • Design (136)


The body text is set in Miller in some books, and others are set in OUP Argo; the front page title (and other book titles within the book) is set in Lithos; the sanserif used for headings and in other places is OUP Argo.

See also

  • For Dummies, a similar series of introductory books
  • Rough Guides, whose non-travel books also cover culture and science


  1. Greer, Shakespeare: ISBN 978-0-19-280249-1. Wells, William Shakespeare: ISBN 978-0-19-871862-8.


  1. "Very Short Introductions". Oxford University Press. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  2. "Very Short Introductions – General Series". Oxford University Press (UK). Retrieved 18 April 2018.
  3. "Very Short Introductions". Oxford University Press.
  4. "Languages: A Very Short Introduction". Oxford University Press (UK). Archived from the original on 24 December 2013. Retrieved 3 December 2011.
  5. Glendinning, Simon (2011). Derrida: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. ii. ISBN 978-0-19-280345-0.
  6. "Very Short Introductions". Oxford University Press (UK). Retrieved 16 February 2015.
  7. Blundell, Katherine (2015). Black holes : A Very Short Introduction (1st ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/actrade/9780199602667.001.0001. ISBN 9780199602667. OCLC 932859524.

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