Fiction on the Subjects Library
22nd April 2019
The profiles on our Subjects library are full of ideas for exploring topics further, like articles, TED talks and academic books. Now, just in time for World Book Day, we’ve added recommendations for novels to every subject on the Subjects library. After all, fiction can teach us just as much as fact: there are meticulously researched novels that are as useful as textbooks, stories to make you excited about any subject, characters living their professional lives in jobs related to these subjects, and authors attempting to answer all the ‘what if’ questions that non-fiction can’t allow itself to ask.
The links between the books and their related subjects might be straightforward (Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel for 'History'), or less so (Piggy's glasses in William Golding's Lord of the Flies for 'Ophthalmics and Optometry'), serious (Reading Lolita in Teheran by Azar Nafisi for 'Languages, Linguistics and Comparative literature') or tongue in cheek (The Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy for 'Aerospace engineering and Aviation'). The list we’ve assembled can be used in two ways: you can either look at the subjects you’re interested in and then find the novels they’ve inspired, or you can start from the full list, find a book you like the sound of, then see what subject you’ll be learning about. If you’re doing the former, a warning: the subject you’re reading about won’t always be represented in the best light (looking at you, marketeers and evil scientists!). If you are doing the latter, any reading list will give rise to some objections – so please forgive us if we’ve left out your favourite book.
The recommendations were picked with diversity in mind: diversity of genre, the time and place in which they were written, and diversity of their authors. We have collated books spanning over 400 years and 40 countries, from literary classics to contemporary satire and everything in between. It's still difficult to find books centered around scientific topics that have female authors, and downright impossible in some cases (we'll take recommendations for a gaming female author!). Non-white and non-binary authors are still hugely underrepresented in the literary world. But things are changing fast, and we look forward to updating the list as they do.
To access the full list of fiction, click here (you'll need to be logged in to Unifrog as a student for this link to work).
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