The World's Bloodiest History: Massacre, Genocide, and the Scars They Left on Civilization

4.24 avg rating
( 63 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780785830566: The World's Bloodiest History: Massacre, Genocide, and the Scars They Left on Civilization

This book recounts some of the most horrifying episodes of the past, from ancient times to our own, in searing detail, while rigorously investigating their causes - from religious fanaticism and ethnic rivalry to political power struggles and hunger for vengeance -- and their consequences. 

Engrossing in their descriptions of diverse historical periods and cultures, intriguing in their insights into human impulses and motivations, perplexing in their implications, these are stories that lead us to reflect on our own character and strength of will, and to question, at the most basic levels, what it means to be human.

Handsomely illustrated with striking, sometimes shocking, often poignant images, this book combines the depictions of momentous events with fascinating character portraits and arresting eyewitness accounts to create an absorbing, multifaceted chronicle of a sobering all too human legacy. 

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About the Author:

Joseph Cummins is the author of The War Chronicles:  From Chariots to Flintlocks, The War Chronicles: From Flintlocks to Machine Guns, History's Great Untold Stories, Anything for a Vote:  Dirty Ticks, Cheap ShotsOctober Surprises in U.S. Presidential Campaigns, Great Rivals in History:  When Politics Gets Personal, and  President Obama and a New Birth of Freedom.  He has also written a novel, The Snow Train.  He lives in Maplewood, New Jersey.

Review:

 

Our History Project Blog It is hard to describe a book with this title or its subject matter as a great read, much less an enjoyable book. However that is what Joseph Cummins did. I am talking 5 stars, straight through the uprights, 3 points and nothin’ but net.

The World’s Bloodiest History was one of those books I could not put down....It is a book about racial and secular superiority. It is a book about greed and hate. It is a book about intolerance. It is a book about so many things, feelings, thoughts and actions. However, it is a book about hope, knowledge and courage to stand up to say this will not happen again...If you are like me, it just may be a book that never ends. Pick it up, borrow it, check it out, download it; however you can get it, this is a book that you will want to read—and never completely put down.

Book News Inc. From the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre in 1572, to the Massacre at Srebrenica in 1995, this color-illustrated reference offers a serious yet accessible look at history's darkest episodes of genocide and violence, for general readers and students in high school and up. Political, religious, and cultural causes and consequences are considered for the killings, which have been selected due to their impact on world history and human societies. Narrative chapters incorporate eyewitness accounts and stories of heroism, and include dramatic details while avoiding sensationalism for its own sake. A brief introduction discusses common elements that massacres share, looks at the failure of international organizations to halt genocides, and points to the hope represented by recent UN doctrines. The book is illustrated with about 100 color and b&w historical and contemporary photos, maps, and illustrations. Some of the photos are shocking in their depiction of the realities of genocide.   World History Blog "...a worthy read...This is an area that I wish many students learn about in hopes it may cut down on these events in the future."

Bookviews “Even a casual reading of history reveals that the past 5,000 years of human ‘civilization’ have been filled with the most horrific cruelty and The World’s Bloodiest History by Joseph Cummins is testimony to that. Suffice it to say this is not light reading, but it does address questions such as why mobs become killing machines, the Nazis could craft a deliberate genocide, political ideologies become killing grounds, and all the worst aspects of human behavior, zealotry, prejudices, and animosities fuel the never-ending scars on civilization as it progresses from one event to another.”   Stevo’s Book Reviews on the Internet In a somber survey leavened by sparse but inspiring accounts of heroism, author Joseph Cummins revisits some of the most dreadful and destructive acts of violence in history—from moments of sheer madness and merciless military offensives, such as that of the Spanish conquistadors in 1521 in what is now Mexico City, to clinically orchestrated campaigns of genocide, as took place in early twentieth-century Armenia, Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe, and 1970s Cambodia. Engaging, harrowing, and enlightening, his accounts convey the terror and trauma of these incidents while identifying the zealotry, prejudices, and animosities that fuelled them, and analyzing, in revealing fashion, their enduring and sometimes insidious influence on history. Handsomely illustrated with more than 100 striking, sometimes shocking, archival images gathered from around the world, The World’s Bloodiest History combines compelling depictions of momentous events with fascinating character portraits and arresting eyewitness accounts to create an absorbing, multifaceted chronicle of a sobering, all-too-human legacy.

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