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1 Burnside Western Civilization- General

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Civilization: A New History of the Western World

by

Civilization: A New History of the Western World Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Ever since the attacks of September 11, 2001, Western leaders have described a world engaged in "a fight for civilization." But what do we mean by civilization? We believe in a Western tradition of freedom that has produced a fulfilling existence for many millions of people and a culture of enormous depth and creative power. But the history of our civilization is also filled with unspeakable brutality'"for every Leonardo there is a Mussolini, for every Beethoven symphony a concentration camp, for every Chrysler Building a My Lai massacre.

An ambitious historical assessment of the Western world'"tying together the histories of empires, art, philosophy, science, and politics'"Civilizationreexamines and confronts us with all of our glories and catastrophes. At such a dangerous time in the world's history, this brilliant book is required reading.

Review:

"This stimulating survey steers a middle course between triumphal pageant of progress and postmodern bricolage of clashing perspectives to attempt a coherent narrative of Western history. Historian Osborne (The Floating Egg: Episodes in the Making of Geology) traces a lucid, thoughtful overview of European and American history from Stonehenge and the Greco-Roman era to the present. Tying together his account are a few broad themes, most prominently the development of rationalism — the use of abstract reasoning to uncover universal laws governing nature and society — from its Platonic origins to its apotheosis in Western science and its malevolent influence on Soviet communism. This often sinister rationalism works in counterpoint, and sometimes opposition, to what he sees as the redeeming organicity of Western culture, its rootedness in human adaptation to changing environments and practical needs in a multitude of contexts, from the growth of medieval towns to the rise of Hollywood and rock 'n' roll. Some pronouncements, like Osborne's insistence on the unique ferocity of Western warfare, aren't persuasive, and the paragraph he accords the Rolling Stones' 1969 Altamont concert is one too many. But one judges such a book less by its historiographical synthesis than by the wealth of provocative insights it throws up, and by that measure Osborne succeeds admirably. Photos." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

"It would be hard to imagine a more readable general history of the West that covers so much ground so incisively."--William Grimes,

Synopsis:

Ever since the attacks of September 11, 2001, Western leaders have described a world engaged in "a fight for civilization." But what do we mean by civilization? We believe in a Western tradition of freedom that has produced a fulfilling existence for many millions of people and a culture of enormous depth and creative power. But the history of our civilization is also filled with unspeakable brutality--for every Leonardo there is a Mussolini, for every Beethoven symphony a concentration camp, for every Chrysler Building a My Lai massacre. An ambitious historical assessment of the Western world--tying together the histories of empires, art, philosophy, science, and politics-- reexamines and confronts us with all of our glories and catastrophes. At such a dangerous time in the world's history, this brilliant book is required reading.

About the Author

For many years Roger Osborne worked as an editor in the London publishing world, first at Macmillan and then Faber & Faber, specializing in books on medicine, psychology, and the history of science. Since 1992 he has been a full-time writer, using particular subjects to demonstrate new ways of understanding the past. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society and lives in Yorkshire.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781933648194
Author:
Osborne, Roger
Publisher:
Pegasus Books
Subject:
General
Subject:
History
Subject:
Civilization, western
Subject:
General History
Subject:
Civilization
Subject:
World - General
Subject:
World History-Western Civilization
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20061131
Binding:
Hardcover
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
544
Dimensions:
9.00 x 6.00 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Western Civilization » General
History and Social Science » World History » General
History and Social Science » World History » Western Civilization

Civilization: A New History of the Western World Used Hardcover
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Product details 544 pages Pegasus Books - English 9781933648194 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "This stimulating survey steers a middle course between triumphal pageant of progress and postmodern bricolage of clashing perspectives to attempt a coherent narrative of Western history. Historian Osborne (The Floating Egg: Episodes in the Making of Geology) traces a lucid, thoughtful overview of European and American history from Stonehenge and the Greco-Roman era to the present. Tying together his account are a few broad themes, most prominently the development of rationalism — the use of abstract reasoning to uncover universal laws governing nature and society — from its Platonic origins to its apotheosis in Western science and its malevolent influence on Soviet communism. This often sinister rationalism works in counterpoint, and sometimes opposition, to what he sees as the redeeming organicity of Western culture, its rootedness in human adaptation to changing environments and practical needs in a multitude of contexts, from the growth of medieval towns to the rise of Hollywood and rock 'n' roll. Some pronouncements, like Osborne's insistence on the unique ferocity of Western warfare, aren't persuasive, and the paragraph he accords the Rolling Stones' 1969 Altamont concert is one too many. But one judges such a book less by its historiographical synthesis than by the wealth of provocative insights it throws up, and by that measure Osborne succeeds admirably. Photos." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , "It would be hard to imagine a more readable general history of the West that covers so much ground so incisively."--William Grimes,
"Synopsis" by , Ever since the attacks of September 11, 2001, Western leaders have described a world engaged in "a fight for civilization." But what do we mean by civilization? We believe in a Western tradition of freedom that has produced a fulfilling existence for many millions of people and a culture of enormous depth and creative power. But the history of our civilization is also filled with unspeakable brutality--for every Leonardo there is a Mussolini, for every Beethoven symphony a concentration camp, for every Chrysler Building a My Lai massacre. An ambitious historical assessment of the Western world--tying together the histories of empires, art, philosophy, science, and politics-- reexamines and confronts us with all of our glories and catastrophes. At such a dangerous time in the world's history, this brilliant book is required reading.
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