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The Oxford Tribe

The Oxford Tribe cover image
The Oxford Tribe cover image The Oxford Tribe cover image The Oxford Tribe cover image
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by: Peter Rudiak-Gould
Books with a 5 star rating  (2)
Publication Date: December 23, 2015
Book Size: 5.25" x 8"
Pages: 303
Binding: Perfect Bound
Color: Black and White

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Book Synopsis
The city of dreaming spires. Eden meets academia. The oldest university in the Anglo world. The stuffiest place in Britain, and the silliest place, too. Oxford is many things to many people, but for Peter Rudiak-Gould, newly arrived as a student of anthropology, it was the most exotic tribe he could hope to study (or join). Part memoir, part travelogue, part field guide, The Oxford Tribe will entertain the seasoned traveler and the armchair philosopher alike.
Customer Comments
Brad Newsham
Posted: March 22, 2016
Customer comment 5 star rating
One of my tests for a book is whether or not it sticks with me. Two months have passed since I finished reading this one, and although I’ve read half a dozen other books in the interim, this one still comes to mind several times a week. I have been to England, but not to Oxford; and I have known people with “Oxford” degrees, but until two months ago I never knew what was actually meant when someone said, “I read at Oxford” – I was aware only that this information was considered important among certain classes of (mostly British) people. But Rudiak-Gould has personalized and de-mystified Oxford for me, and has painted in my mind’s eye vivid pictures of its ivy-draped buildings and lawns and forests and jowly professors and brainiac younger people toasting each other in weathered pubs that line cobblestoned lanes. He’s also given me my own “Oxford education” of sorts, as I now know (among many other very useful things that I've learned from this book) that “Oxford” refers to a collection of thirty-some colleges whose attendees spend vast amounts of time simply “reading” in their areas of study and reporting occasionally to eminent advisors, plus nearly-as-vast amounts of time drinking and feasting and learning subtle distinctions of class and manners via socializing and conducting various youthful high jinks often while garbed in costumery of wide-ranging degrees of formality and silliness among the spectacular settings of three dozen institutions that have for nearly a thousand years been helping to educate and influence and, hch-hm, refine a notable percentage of the world’s thinkers and leaders who have in turn gone out and shaped much of recent human history. But perhaps most important of all, for me, was that I found this book quite entertaining. (True: After I had laughed out loud four different times I started keeping track, and toward the end of the book when I hit double-digits I then stopped counting.)
yulia vozzhaeva
Posted: September 20, 2017
Customer comment 5 star rating
I have discovered this book after reading “Surviving Paradise” by Peter Rudiak-Gould. “The Oxford Tribe” is yet another treat from the author. It really shows a different side of Oxford and does so with humor and captivating reflections. I couldn't count how many times it made me laugh and closely relate to my own academic experience in the USA. So many of the situations that are described made me nod and recount similar curiosities of academia in addition to discovering that academia in the UK is even more bizarre and funny.
About The Author
Author bio image
Peter Rudiak-Gould is a cultural anthropologist, consultant, and writer. He lives in Toronto, Canada. Learn more at
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