Oxford's Very Short Introductions series offers concise and original introductions to a wide range of subjects -- from Islam to Sociology, Literary Theory to History, and Archaeology to the Bible. Not simply a textbook of definitions, each volume provides trenchant and provocative -- yet always balanced and complete -- discussions of the central issues in a given discipline or field. Every Very Short Introduction gives a readable evolution of the subject in question, demonstrating how the subject developed and how it influenced society. Eventually, the series will encompass every major academic discipline, offering all readers an accessible and abundant reference library. Whatever area of study one deems important or appealing, whatever topic fascinates the general reader, the Very Short Introductions series has a handy and affordable guide that will likely prove indispensable.
With his well-known idiosyncrasies and aphoristic style, Friedrich Nietzsche is always bracing and provocative, and temptingly easy to dip into. Michael Tanner's introduction to the philosopher's life and work examines the numerous ambiguities inherent in his writings and explodes many of the misconceptions that have grown in the past hundred years.