Delve deeper with Bianca...

Expand your mind and satisfy your curiosity with books, articles, podcasts and videos recommended by current Oxford undergraduate students. 


Bianca Pasca'There have always been two things that drew me in: literature and science. Writing has meant discovering myself more, while doing Chemistry reveals the fabric (or, more fittingly, the substance!) of the world we live in and beyond. The challenges we now face in protecting it can also find a solution in Chemistry. Explosions might be more than just destructive and I chose to study the science because I wanted to explore just that'.

- Bianca Pasca, Chemistry

If you want to find out more about the science behind explosions, Bianca recommends:

Copenhagen by Michael Frayn

A play that reinvents Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle from Quantum Mechanics and applies it to the human mind: did Werner Heisenberg really help Nazi Germany in its efforts to build an atomic bomb? Why did he meet with Niels Bohr in Copenhagen in 1941?

The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean

A really fun collection of anecdotes and historical stories, from the chance discoveries of certain elements and chemical reactions to the more quirky and unknown tales from scientists’ lives.

The Periodic Table by Primo Levi

A collection of short stories inspired by Primo Levi’s life as a chemist, each centred around various elements from the periodic table. Warning: it might contain some ‘explosive’ accidents!

Why Chemical Reactions Happen by James Keeler and Peter Wothers

A very interesting textbook exploring concepts in chemistry in more depth, which could also be useful for a Chemistry interview at Oxford!