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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful collection of varied stories
This is a superb collection of short stories. Although designed to be used as part of an Open University course, it stands alone in its own right as a rich collection of stories by writers from around the world, connected by a loose theme of cultural difference. Many of the stories feature characters who, for various reasons, sometimes funny, sometimes tragic, sometimes...
Published on 4 April 2009 by M. V. Clarke

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Open University Set-Text that Explores the Theme of Cultural Diversity Within the English Language
This anthology, edited by Lynda Prescott, is one of a number of set-texts that are needed if you are studying the sixty credit Open University (OU) Level 1 humanities course, AA100 'The Arts Past and Present'. It is an introductory course made for new students to experience a plethora of arts disciplines before deciding on a particular specialism. This book is meant to...
Published 9 months ago by Mr. Nicholas Pearson


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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful collection of varied stories, 4 April 2009
By 
M. V. Clarke (Durham, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
This is a superb collection of short stories. Although designed to be used as part of an Open University course, it stands alone in its own right as a rich collection of stories by writers from around the world, connected by a loose theme of cultural difference. Many of the stories feature characters who, for various reasons, sometimes funny, sometimes tragic, sometimes mundane, have been dislocated from their homeland. The range of authors is super - from well know writers such as Zadie Smith, VS Naipaul, Peter Carey to others who may not be so well known - you're sure to find a new author whose work appeals to you.

Particular favourites included Rohinton Mistry's 'Squatter', a delightful story about an Indian chef in America, Peter Carey's 'American Dreams', a dark tale about a small Australian town, and Alan Sillitoe's 'Pit Strike', an emotional tale about a miner supporting his colleagues.

Warmly recommended.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Open University Set-Text that Explores the Theme of Cultural Diversity Within the English Language, 13 July 2013
By 
Mr. Nicholas Pearson "Cert HE (Open)" (Herne Bay, Kent. England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
This anthology, edited by Lynda Prescott, is one of a number of set-texts that are needed if you are studying the sixty credit Open University (OU) Level 1 humanities course, AA100 'The Arts Past and Present'. It is an introductory course made for new students to experience a plethora of arts disciplines before deciding on a particular specialism. This book is meant to aid understanding within the third block of the module, 'Cultural Encounters', and is intended to be used in approaching the discipline of English language and literature studies. Lynda Prescott, herself, is a senior lecturer for the OU in the UK, and has authored and edited a range of Open University material for various courses throughout the humanities department. I studied AA100 in the year of 2011, and have subsequently gained a Certificate of Higher Education in Humanities, focusing on the English Language and creative writing as my specialism. It is only now, having finished my latest module U214 'Worlds of English', that I have returned to this book, looking over the short stories that were not the focus of AA100 in particular, whilst also exploring old ground.
The theme of the anthology is, of course, 'difference'. This echoes a lot of the material in the 'Cultural Encounters' block of AA100 and throughout U214, and is meant to focus on the many varieties of English around the world, uniting people in one lingua franca, whilst also planting seeds of prejudice when cultural norms are either challenged or ignored. 'A World of Difference' explores the short story genre across the five continents of America, Asia, Africa, Australia and Europe, and provides voices from many cultures and ethnic groups that resonate experiences of migration and community presence. The anthology literally sweeps you across the map and gives the reader a sense of diversity within the English language, both in the content of the stories themselves and in the language used by the specific characters/narration therein.
Each entry within has a brief introduction, which explains who the author is and their motivation for entering into the genre of the short story, along with brief career highlights and how their story fits into the overall theme of the book. There is also a preface authored by Lynda Prescott at the beginning, explaining her reasons and motivations for putting together the collection of short tales, and how the theme of difference permeates throughout the anthology of cultural encounters. Selected authors such as Nadine Gordimer, V.S. Naipaul and Amy Tan, amongst others (fifteen altogether), make up this collection of fictional, yet fiercely realistic tales of immigration, cultural anxieties and transitional pressures within the mid-to-late twentieth century. If a particular author catches your attention, the introduction to each entry usually includes a small list of their highlighted works, otherwise Prescott has provided 'selected further reading', regarding the genre of the short story and other such contemporary collections to explore.
'A World of Difference' makes a worthwhile addition to the aspiring and professional linguist's bookshelf and, as an Open University set-text, provides the level 1 student of AA100 with a pleasant introduction to the complexity of the English language that is fuelled by world history and global politics.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A nice collection, few sad stories, 23 April 2014
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Mr. C. Richardson (Dublin) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
There's not much point of reviewing the stories themselves, as of course you'll come to your own conclusion on how you feel about them.

I purchased this book as part of my OU course in Arts Past & Present, which centered on one story in particular regarding freedom of a chap from India in 1960's America. That in itself was a fantastic story and an interesting insight in to a different culture from our own.

As for the other stories, I have had a quick glance through and I will definitely be revisiting some in the future. A nice little book to expand your mind if you like that idea!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A World of Difference, 1 Mar 2014
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
I am studying Creative Writing with the Open University. These stories, though not always easy to understand, serve as models.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved It, 9 Feb 2014
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
Bought this for my Open University course and read it, nay devoured it, as soon as it arrived. As in all anthologies, didn't love every story, but all are brilliantly written and ranged from good to astounding.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Varied and exceptional, 25 Aug 2013
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Really enjoying the mix and match of stories. Well written and linked together thoughtfully. Have laughed and cried. Excellent read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars More than a set book for the Open University., 20 Aug 2013
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
A World of Difference by Lynda Prescott no doubt baffles booksellers as it flies off the shelves periodically. It’s a set book on an Open University course, but deserves a much wider audience. It contains some fifteen wonderful stories from the likes of Zadie Smith and Peter Carey, a little bonus is an mini biography of each author.
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5.0 out of 5 stars OU set book, 27 July 2013
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
Bought as a set book for upcoming OU course. Have started to read it and found the stories to be very interesting and challenging in that they portray life in different areas of the world. In fact life in a world that appears very different from mine!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Bought for university, 15 Jun 2013
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L. Holder-Stephenson (Surrey, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
This book was part of the reading list for university. Wouldn't say I loved reading it though, it was just on my reading list.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting collection of short stories, 24 May 2013
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This review is from: A World of Difference: An Anthology of Short Stories from Five Continents (Paperback)
Very good collection of short stories. There is something for everyone. Gives you enough food for thought.

Hari
Leamington Spa
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