World History: The Story of Mankind from Prehistory to the Present

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9780060174774: World History: The Story of Mankind from Prehistory to the Present

Encompassing the entire history of humankind, beginning with our earliest ancestors and highlighting significant advances throughout time, this new revised edition is divided into six major thematic sections and contains a new epilogue and new maps.

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Review:

Writing a one-volume history of the world is a project fraught with peril: in such a book, surely something important will be left out, glossed over, missed. Hugh Thomas does a better job than most, especially in his attention to the material basis for human society--the farming, mining, stockraising, and industry that keep us fed and clothed. He has a sweeping view of historical trends, such as the worldwide emergence of kingship and the inevitable collapse of empires. Thomas's view is resolutely Eurocentric, and he passes by Asian history with a swift glance. With that fault in mind, however, the reader will find in Thomas's pages a handy and very well-written work of historical reference.

From Library Journal:

Thomas's History of the World (1979) pulled the essentials of world history into one volume. Here, as in the previous editions, Thomas, a historian living in London, tries to do justice to gender and race. On page 725 of the revised edition (1981) of the initial work, Thomas sets the stage for his latest work by saying that there are three possible outcomes of the Cold War. The second, "a resolution of the rivalry in favor of one or the other (either from defeat in war or in 'peaceful competition' or from decay)" describes the fall of Communism in 1989 and provides the backdrop for the epilog to the 1996 edition. Except for this epilog, and the maps, very few changes are made in the new edition. Thomas does not take a linear approach to history but incorporates topically all major civilizations into the discussion. He weaves major concepts of history into a readable tapestry, but the tapestry is loosely hung. To the lay reader, Thomas might seem to be a genius, but some historians will find him arrogant. For general and informed readers.?Harry Willems, Southeast Kansas Lib. System, Iola
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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