What made the West 'western'? And has Western civilisation found modernity but lost itself? This provocative and stimulating polemic argues that the modern world has destroyed western culture and civilisation without gaining anything in return, leaving contemporary man with a spiritual and cultural gap that no amount of material wealth can fill. This is a brave and challenging attempt to explain how and why this has happened and present a new concept of modern history for our complacent times.
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A philology graduate of Moscow University, Alexander Boot lectured there on English and American literature in English, wrote art criticism and got into trouble with the KGB before emigrating to the USA in 1973 - only to find that the West he was seeking was no longer there. This inspired a life-long quest for an explanation, reflected in numerous essays. He has written for a wide range of publications including the London Magazine, the Salisbury Review and the Independent. He now divides his time between London and Burgundy, working on his next two books.
""There are many wise ideas in this book""--Roger Scruton, writer and philosopher
""A startlingly clear analysis of why we have become who we are, written with such admirable clarity and wit that news of humanity's defeat seems almost bearable. Noone who claims to know anything should open their mouth in public without reading it.""--Fay Weldon, author of The Life and Loves of a She-Devil and Auto Da Fay
""Highly original...an extremely important argument even for those who have no religious belief, and Alexander Boot puts it more unflinchingly, more courageously, than anyone else.""--Theodore Dalrymple, author of Life at the Bottom and Our Culture, What's Left of It
""Those reading Alexander Boot's vigorous and witty assault on the modern superstitions of progress and science will never see the world in the same way again. A refreshing and original voice.""--James Le Fanu, Telegraph columnist and author of The Rise and Fall of Modern Medicine
""At last! Someone with the courage to say the unsayable: that one can be for liberty while detesting many of the means by which liberty is achieved.""--Digby Anderson, journalist and former Director of the Social Affairs Unit
""Alexander Boot puts his finger precisely on the malaise affecting western societies. His book is the most readable account of the decline of the West since Spengler, and serenely free from the contamination of academic jargon. It should be read by politicians, teachers, bishops and anyone who has anything to do with public administration. We should all read it. Twice.""--Reverend Dr Peter Mullen, Rector of St Michael's Cornhill and author of Holy Smoke: The Daily Life of a Rector in the City of London
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Book Description I.B.Tauris, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M1850439850
Book Description I.B.Tauris, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P111850439850