A masterfully researched and compelling history of Iran from 1501 to 2009 This history of modern Iran is not a survey in the conventional sense but an ambitious exploration of the story of a nation. It offers a revealing look at how events, people, and institutions are shaped by currents that sometimes reach back hundreds of years. The book covers the complex history of the diverse societies and economies of Iran against the background of dynastic changes, revolutions, civil wars, foreign occupa..
Cities, scripts, literature, the rule of law – all were born in Iraq. That so many see this ancient land as nothing more than a violent backwater steeped in chaos is a travesty. This is the place where, for the first 5,000 years of human history, all innovations of worth emerged. It was the cradle of civilization.In this unrivalled study, John Robertson details the greatness and grandeur of Iraq’s achievements, the brutality and magnificence of its ancient empires and its extraordinary contribut..
Islam and Capitalism is a learned, engaged rebuttal of the cultural reductionism of Max Weber and others who have tried to explain the politics and society of the Middle East by reference to some unchanging entity called 'Islam,' typically characterised as instinctively hostile to capitalism.
Maxime Rodinson looks at the facts, analysing economic texts with his customary common sense, to show that Muslims never had any trouble making money.
'In Islam and Capitalism, we can see a powerful m..
At a time when Islam is the focus of attention, vilified by some and a source of inspiration for others, Arkoun's is one of few voices that seek to go against the stream. His radical review of mainstream historiography of Islam draws on interdisciplinary analysis - historical, social, psychological and anthropological. One of the foremost thinkers of the Muslim world, Arkoun is in a position to question dogmatic constructs from within, with respect and critical acumen. An understanding of this a..
The religious thinkers, political leaders, law-makers, writers and philosophers of the early Muslim world helped to shape the 1,400-year-long development of today s secondlargest world religion. But who were these people? What do we know of their lives, and the ways in which they influenced their societies?
Chase F. Robinson draws on the long tradition in Muslim scholarship of commemorating in writing the biographies of notable figures, but weaves these ambitious lives together to create a rich..
This is a fresh and surprising account of Japan's culture from the 'opening up' of the country in the mid-nineteenth century to the present.'How much I admired it, what a lot I learned from it and, above all, how very much I enjoyed it ... Masterly.' Neil MacGregorIt is told through the eyes of people who greeted this change not with the confidence and grasping ambition of Japan's modernizers and nationalists, but with resistance, conflict, distress.We encounter writers of dramas, ghost stories ..
A penetrating account of the dynamics of World War II's Grand Alliance through the messages exchanged by the "Big Three" Stalin exchanged more than six hundred messages with Allied leaders Churchill and Roosevelt during the Second World War. In this riveting volume-the fruit of a unique British-Russian scholarly collaboration-the messages are published and also analyzed within their historical context. Ranging from intimate personal greetings to weighty salvos about diplomacy and strategy, this ..
A wealth of new research and thinking on Lawrence, the Arab Revolt, and World War One in the Middle East, providing essential background to today's violent conflicts Rarely is a book published that revises our understanding of an entire world region and the history that has defined it. This groundbreaking volume makes just such a contribution. Neil Faulkner draws on ten years of field research to offer the first truly multidisciplinary history of the conflicts that raged in Sinai, Arabia, Palest..
Romans, your Emperor needs you! Are you ready to become a Roman legionary?The year is 100 CE and Rome stands supreme from the desert sands of Mesopotamia to the highlands of Caledonia. Far from the glittering centre of imperial power, the humble legionary holds back barbarian hordes and conquers new frontiers. On his armoured shoulders rests the might of Rome.Combining the latest discoveries with contemporary accounts, this book paints a vivid picture of life in the Roman legions.Table of Conten..
An invigorating history of the arguments and cooperation between America and Britain as they divided up the world and an illuminating exploration of their underlying allianceThroughout modern history, British and American rivalry has gone hand in hand with common interests. In this book Kathleen Burk brilliantly examines the different kinds of power the two empires have projected, and the means they have used to do it. What the two empires have shared is a mixture of pragmatism, ruthless commerc..
The thrilling history of archaeological adventure, with tales of danger, debate, audacious explorers, and astonishing discoveries around the globe What is archaeology? The word may bring to mind images of golden pharaohs and lost civilizations, or Neanderthal skulls and Ice Age cave art. Archaeology is all of these, but also far more: the only science to encompass the entire span of human history-more than three million years! This Little History tells the riveting stories of some of the great a..
From the dawn of history to the death of Cleopatra, ancient Egypt was home to larger-than-life personalities. Across one hundred lives, Toby Wilkinson explores the true character and diversity of human experience in the ancient world s greatest civilization. Some of those profiled are famous: pharaohs and queens such as Akhenaten, Nefertiti, Ramesses II and Tiye. Others are lesser known but equally engaging: Imhotep, architect of the first pyramid; Perniankhu, the court dwarf; and the royal scul..
Following the award-winning BBC Radio 4 series, a panoramic exploration of peoples, objects and beliefs from the celebrated author of A History of the World in 100 Objects and Germany'Riveting, extraordinary ... tells the sweeping story of religious belief in all its inventive variety. The emphasis is not on our differences, but on shared spiritual yearnings' Rachel Campbell-Johnston, The Times, Books of the YearOne of the central facts of human existence is that every society shares a set of be..
'Fresh, compelling ... an important book, revealing that 50 years on, 1968 is still unfinished business' Andrew Hussey, Financial Times'A thoughtful, readable account of a moment in history that deserves to be dwelt on' Andrew Marr, The Times1968 saw an extraordinary range of protests across much of the western world. Some of these were genuinely revolutionary - around ten million French workers went on strike and the whole state teetered on the brink of collapse. Others were more easily contain..
Guardian Book of the DayNew Statesman Book of the YearHistory Today Book of the YearTimes Literary Supplement Book of the YearBBC History Magazine Book of the Year'Bustles impressively with detail and anecdote' —Sunday Times‘Consistently fascinating’ —The Spectator'Beautifully written and deeply researched' —The Observer'Barr draws on a rich and varied trove of sources to knit a sequence of dramatic episodes into an elegant whole. Great events march through these pages' —Wall Street JournalUpon ..
Over the last 1,400 years, a succession of Muslim polities and empires expanded to control territories and peoples stretching from southern France to East Africa and South East Asia. Yet many of the contributions of Muslim thinkers, scientists and theologians, not to mention statesmen and soldiers, have been overlooked. The bestselling Lost Islamic History, now in a new updated edition, rescues from oblivion a forgotten past, charting its narrative from Muhammad to modern-day nation-states. From..
A ragtag group of elite Roman soldiers are sent on a suicide mission in this epic historical thriller from Sunday Times bestseller and leading Ancient Rome expert, Harry Sidebottom. ____________________No man who enters the Castle of Silence ever walks out alive. A remote fortress prison set high in the mountains, escape is impossible - and to break someone out, unthinkable.But this is exactly what Roman officer Marcus Aelius Valens must do.Tasked with rescuing the young Prince Sasan, Valens lea..
'A compelling biography of one of the greatest men of the modern age. Stanford is particularly brilliant on the tensions inside Luther's private and spiritual life. This is a very fine book, written with a flourish.' Melvyn BraggThe 31st of October 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther pinning his 95 'Theses' - or reform proposals - to the door of his local university church in Wittenberg. Most scholars now agree that the details of this eye-catching gesture are more legend than hamm..
One of the most dramatic chapters in the history of nineteenth-century Europe, the Commune of 1871 was an eclectic revolutionary government that held power in Paris across eight weeks between 18 March and 28 May. Its brief rule ended in `Bloody Week' - the brutal massacre of as many as 15,000 Parisians, and perhaps even more, who perished at the hands of the provisional government's forces. By then, the city's boulevards had been torched and its monuments toppled. More than 40,000 Parisians were..
A SUNDAY TIMES HISTORY BOOK OF THE YEAR'A triumph' Guardian'Glorious ... makes the past at once familiar, exotic and thrilling.' Dominic Sandbrook'A brilliant book' Mail on SundayJust like us, medieval men and women worried about growing old, got blisters and indigestion, fell in love and had children. And yet their lives were full of miraculous and richly metaphorical experiences radically different to our own, unfolding in a world where deadly wounds might be healed overnight by divine interve..
Drawing on the cuisine of the Middle Ages, from the fall of the Roman Empire to Henry VIII's break with Rome, this new treatment of a classic book explores the relationship between food, religion and the ever-widening gap between the tables of the rich and the poor. Featured is an appetizing collection of recipes inspired by medieval manuscripts, richly illustrated throughout with stunning scenes of food, feasting and cooking from paintings, tapestries and drawings. The Medieval Cookbook has bee..
A spirited and thought-provoking history of the vast changes that transformed Europe during the 1,000-year span of the Middle Ages The millennium between the breakup of the western Roman Empire and the Reformation was a long and hugely transformative period-one not easily chronicled within the scope of a few hundred pages. Yet distinguished historian Chris Wickham has taken up the challenge in this landmark book, and he succeeds in producing the most riveting account of medieval Europe in a gene..
A year in the life of a peasant woman in medieval England is vividly evoked in this extraordinary portrait of Marion, a carpenter's wife, and her extended family. Based on years of research, Ann Baer brings to life the reality of a world that has been lost.Rising before dawn in a tiny village to a day of gruelling hard work, Marion and her husband face the daily struggle for survival. Starvation is never far away and travel to the next village is virtually unheard of. Existing without soap, pape..
This authoritative volume has been revised throughout and expanded, with stunning new images and accounts of the major discoveries of recent years. Recent findings have been added to expand our understanding of the Olmecs outside of their heartland, and new research on the legacy of the Maya offers a wider and more cohesive narrative of Mexico’s history. New co-author Javier Urcid has added greater coverage of Oaxaca and of Monté Alban, one of the earliest cities in Mesoamerica and the center of..
Since the fifteenth century, when humanist writers began to speak of a middle period in history linking their time to the ancient world, the nature of the Middle Ages has been widely debated. Across the millennium from 500 to 1500, distinguished historian Johannes Fried describes a dynamic confluence of political, social, religious, economic, and scientific developments that draws a guiding thread through the era: the growth of a culture of reason. Beginning with the rise of the Franks, Fried us..
--THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER--'An invaluable contribution to history.' Serhii Plokhy, Evening Standard'Tells the story of the disaster and its gruesome aftermath with thriller-like flair. Midnight in Chernobyl is wonderful and chilling ... written with skill and passion.' Luke Harding, The Observer'Superb, enthralling and necessarily terrifying... every step feels spring-loaded with tension... extraordinary.' The New York TimesThe story of Chernobyl is more complex, more human, and more terri..
Tom Holland, author of RUBICON and PERSIAN FIRE, gives a thrilling panoramic account of the birth of the new Western Europe in the year 1000
Of all the civilisations existing in the year 1000, that of Western Europe seemed the unlikeliest candidate for future greatness. Compared to the glittering empires of Byzantium or Islam, the splintered kingdoms on the edge of the Atlantic appeared impoverished, fearful and backward. But the anarchy of these years proved to be, not the portents of the en..
Many ‘model’ cities, both imagined and physical, have existed throughout history; from the ideal cities of the Renaissance, Urbino, Pienza and Ferrara, to modernist utopias, such as Brasília or Chandigarh. North Korea’s Pyongyang, however, is arguably unique. Entirely rebuilt following the Korean War (1950–53), the city was planned and fully implemented to model a single ideological vision – a guide for an entire state. As a result, the urban fabric of Pyongyang displays an extraordinary archite..
A revised and updated edition of the classic work to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the first moon landing'It left me spellbound ... belongs to the same tradition as Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff' Sunday Times'Fascinating. A wonderful book' David BowieThe Apollo Moon Programme has been called the last optimistic act of the twentieth century. In Moondust, Andrew Smith set out to find and interview the nine remaining Moonwalkers in order to learn how their lives, and ours, were irrevocably ..
Drawing on newly available materials from the Soviet archives, Polly Jones offers an innovative, comprehensive account of de-Stalinization in the Soviet Union during the Khrushchev and early Brezhnev eras. Jones traces the authorities' initiation and management of the de-Stalinization process and explores a wide range of popular reactions to the new narratives of Stalinism in party statements and in Soviet literature and historiography. Engaging with the dynamic field of memory studies, this boo..
Amazon's No. 1 Children's Non-Fiction Book of the Year 2019 is an illustrated encyclopedia of Greek mythology like no other. Mythologica features startlingly beautiful and exquisitely otherworldly portraits of mythological characters in eye-popping colour from artist Victoria Topping and authoritative text from Classics scholar and Greek mythology expert Dr Stephen Kershaw.Uncover the colourful lives of 50 powerful gods and goddesses, earth-dwelling mortals and terrifying monsters as you journey..
Myths in every culture explain our origins, the earth’s creation, gods and monsters, demons, the afterlife and the underworld. This compelling account, newly available in paperback, gathers together themes and stories from every culture, showing how myths share many common patterns, and how the human imagination is expressed in all its diversity. It asks the question: what do myths tell us about the human condition? Compiled by Christopher Dell, the bestselling author of books on monsters and on..
A brand new book from the Sunday Times and internationally bestselling author of The Silk Roads'Masterly mapping out of a new world order' - Evening StandardRevised and updated editionThe New Silk Roads takes a fresh look at the relationships being formed along the length and breadth of the ancient trade routes today. The world is changing dramatically and in an age of Brexit and Trump, the themes of isolation and fragmentation permeating the western world stand in sharp contrast to events along..
An upstart French duke who sets out to conquer the most powerful and unified kingdom in Christendom. An invasion force on a scale not seen since the days of the Romans. One of the bloodiest and most decisive battles ever fought. This riveting book explains why the Norman Conquest was the single most important event in English history.Assessing the original evidence at every turn, Marc Morris goes beyond the familiar outline to explain why England was at once so powerful and yet so vulnerable to ..
On which day was history's shortest war waged and won (in roughly 40 minutes)? How was Napoleon bested by a group of rabbits in 1807? Why did a dispute about beer in an Oxford pub lead to over 100 deaths and 470 years of penance? Why in 1752 did Britain go to bed on 2nd September and wake up on the 14th? How did a women's march in 1917 set off the Russian Revolution?On This Day in History brings to life a key event that happened on each day of the year.From the most important British battle that..
Previously published as Peacemakers
Between January and July 1919, after the war to end all wars, men and women from all over the world converged on Paris for the Peace Conference. At its heart were the leaders of the three great powers - Woodrow Wilson, Lloyd George and Clemenceau. Kings, prime ministers and foreign ministers with their crowds of advisers rubbed shoulders with journalists and lobbyists for a hundred causes - from Armenian independence to women's rights. Everyone had business i..
A groundbreaking new portrait of the apostle Paul, from one of today's leading historians of antiquity Often seen as the author of timeless Christian theology, Paul himself heatedly maintained that he lived and worked in history's closing hours. His letters propel his readers into two ancient worlds, one Jewish, one pagan. The first was incandescent with apocalyptic hopes, expecting God through his messiah to fulfill his ancient promises of redemption to Israel. The second teemed with ancient ac..
During the first and second millennia BCE a swathe of nomadic peoples migrated outward from Central Asia into the Eurasian periphery. One group of these people would find themselves encamped in an unpromising, arid region just south of the Caspian Sea. From these modest and uncertain beginnings, they would go on to form one of the most powerful empires in history: the Persian Empire. In this book, Geoffrey and Brenda Parker tell the captivating story of this ancient civilization and its enduring..
Posters are ubiquitous. They hang on office walls, bedroom doors and bus shelters. But what relevance do they have today in our age of image saturation, of prolific social media and electronic devices? In Posters: A Global History Elizabeth Guffey tells the story of this ephemeral art form, from its birth in the nineteenth century to its place in contemporary culture. She argues that even among today's burgeoning digital media, few forms of graphic design can rival posters for their tangibility ..
Europe in 1945 was prostrate. Much of the continent was devastated by war, mass slaughter, bombing and chaos. Large areas of Eastern Europe were falling under Soviet control, exchanging one despotism for another. Today, the Soviet Union is no more and the democracies of the European Union reach as far as the borders of Russia itself.
Postwar tells the rich and complex story of how we got from there to here. Running right up to the Iraq war and the election of Benedict XVI, Postwar makes sense..
A riveting account of ancient Rome's imperial bodyguard, the select band of soldiers who wielded the power to make-or destroy-the emperors they served Founded by Augustus around 27 B.C., the elite Praetorian Guard was tasked with the protection of the emperor and his family. As the centuries unfolded, however, Praetorian soldiers served not only as protectors and enforcers but also as powerful political players. Fiercely loyal to some emperors, they vied with others and ruthlessly toppled those ..
A brief and original prehistory of the worldPrehistory covers human existence before written records, i.e. most of human existence. But it also refers to the discipline through which we scrutinize prehistoric times. PREHISTORY begins by looking at the discovery of a remote human past and the subsequent dramatic growth of the study of prehistory: early archaeology; geology; Darwin's ideas of evolution; cave paintings; fossil discoveries of human ancestors; museums and collections; radiocarbon dat..
Recovering the oft-neglected role of women in Ottoman high society and power politics, this book brings to life the women who made their mark in a male domain. Though historical records tend to favour the glitter of palaces over the trials of daily life, Goodwin also reconstructs ordinary women's domestic toil. As the Ottoman Empire first expanded and then shrank, women travelled its width and breadth whether out of necessity or merely for pleasure. Some women owned slaves while others suffered ..
'The Penguin History of Europe series ... is one of contemporary publishing's great projects' New StatesmanThe Pursuit of Glory brings to life one of the most extraordinary periods in European history - from the battered, introvert continent after the Thirty Years War to the dynamic one that experienced the French Revolution and the wars of Napoleon. Tim Blanning depicts the lives of ordinary people and the dominant personalities of the age (Louis XIV, Frederick the Great, Napoleon), and explore..
A work of investigative history that will completely change the way in which we see the Romanov story. Finally, here is the truth about the secret plans to rescue Russia’s last imperial family.On 17 July 1918, the whole of the Russian Imperial Family was murdered. There were no miraculous escapes. The former Tsar Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, and their children – Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia and Alexey – were all tragically gunned down in a blaze of bullets. Historian Helen Rappaport sets out..
Winner of the 2017 American Publishers Awards for Professional & Scholarly Excellence (PROSE) in the European & World History category. Winner of the 2017 American Publishers Awards for Professional & Scholarly Excellence (PROSE) in the Excellence in Humanities category. Winner of the 2017 R.R. Hawkins Award given by the American Publishers Awards for Professional & Scholarly Excellence (PROSE). A lively, expansive history of the Protestant and Catholic Reformations and the momen..
Across 100 lives, this book explores the dazzling diversity of human experience during the RenaissanceLike every era, the Renaissance brims with stories. In this book Robert Davis and Beth Lindsmith highlight dozens of notable lives from between 1400 and 1600. Some names are famous – Leonardo, Luther, Lorenzo de’ Medici and Machiavelli all feature – but many others will be new to general readers. They include the aristocratic matriarch Alessandra Strozzi, who sneaked around Florence to spy on po..
'A vivid and humane study of the Plantagenets' diabolical and devious first family - a real joy to read.' Dan Jones, author of The PlantagenetsIn The Restless Kings Nick Barratt presents the tumultuous struggle for supremacy between the first Plantagenet king, Henry II, and his four sons. This conflict tore apart the most powerful family in Western Europe and shaped the future of both Britain and France, with a significance which still resonates today.Exploring the personalities and crises facin..
'Without a revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary movement.' Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, leader of the Bolshevik Revolution and founder of the USSR, was profoundly aware of the power of words. As a zealous orator and prolific writer, he used his words to launch a soaring critique of imperialist society and to theorize the development of the world's first socialist state. Much of his writing was translated into English in order to further the Socialist cause. This book is a compilation of ..
This is a story studded with extraordinary achievements and historic moments, from the building of the pyramids and the conquest of Nubia, through Akhenaten's religious revolution, the power and beauty of Nefertiti, the glory of Tutankhamun's burial chamber, and the ruthlessness of Ramesses, to Alexander the Great's invasion, and Cleopatra's fatal entanglement with Rome. As the world's first nation-state, the history of Ancient Egypt is above all the story of the attempt to unite a disparate rea..