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Italy: A Short History [Hardcover]

Harry Hearder , Jonathan Morris

RRP: 61.00
Price: 58.03 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

15 Nov 2001 0521806135 978-0521806138 2
Italy: A Short History is a concise but comprehensive account of Italian history from the Ice Age to the present day. It is intended for both students of Italian history and culture and the general reader, whether tourist, business-person or traveller, with an interest in Italian affairs. Harry Hearder places the main political developments in Italian history in their economic and social context, and shows how these related to the great moments of artistic and cultural endeavour. Amongst key events, he analyses the growth and decline of the Roman Empire, the remarkable cultural achievements of the Renaissance, Italian unification and the contradictions of the fascist dictatorship of Mussolini. Jonathan Morris brings the work up to the present day with an authoritative but colourful history of the corruption scandals that brought down the post-war Italian political system in the 1990s and the new political forces that have emerged in its place.


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Review

'There is a fine introduction to the culture of the Renaissance and an equally positive account of the Risorgimento on which Hearder was such an expert … another well produced and illustrated book.' Robert Pearce, History Today

'… there are few English historians of Italy who write with the same ease and clarity as Hearder. Equally, there are few who would be able to manage the trick, as Hearder does, of condensing 3,000 years of history into one slim volume while still providing the reader with a detailed narrative of events and personalities, and a sense of historical perspective. it is for these reasons that Italy: A Short History deserves a second outing.' History

Book Description

This new edition of Italy: A Short History presents a clear and concise account of the principal developments in Italian history from the Ice Age to the present day, intended for both the student of Italian history and culture and the general reader with an interest in Italian affairs.

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First Sentence
No other country in Europe can claim the continuity of civilization achieved in Italy. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 2.6 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed 12 Jan 2000
By Honest Opinion - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I was initially excited by this book when I first bought it, but it became more & more difficult to follow as I went thru it.
The reason is the book's poor usage of events, places and maps. For example: the book talks about what the Etruscans did, but doesn't tell you where they are from or even who they are. The movement of people from the Po Valley is discussed, but you're not told where the Po Valley is. Don't check the index, Po Valley isn't there. There's a map on page 14 on the expansion of Italy, but the territories referenced aren't in the text or the index. I finally gave up trying to place events with places and abandoned the book at page 23.
This is a history of Italy for people who already know the history of italy.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a pleasant read 27 Jan 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I used this book a few years ago while teaching a course on the history of Italian literature, and can't recommend it: the prose is wretchedly awkward, and it makes for an extremely un-compelling read. The undergrads weren't wild about it either.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A short history... perhaps too short 30 Aug 2003
By Nancina T - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book was the text used for an Italian culture class I recently took as a requirement for my Italian minor. While it was full of information, I felt that some topics were just skipped over. The Colosseum earns an entire sentence, yet Caravaggio, perhaps the most famous and adored of Italian Baroque painters (the Italians so honored him by printing his picture on the L100,000 note) does not even get a mention. Granted it must have been challenging to cover over 3000 years of civilization in 300 pages, but it just seems like this book skips over too much. If you want a chronology of Italy, this is the book for you, but if you want detailed information into the history of Italy, you may want to look elsewhere.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars essence of many event's in Italy's long history 28 Dec 2012
By W Boudville - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Unlike the other reviewers, I found the book refreshing and well articulated. Of course at 300 pages it is indeed a brief precise of such a glorious and long history. In response to concerns that you might have about it being too short, you should realise that there is no lack of long voluminous treatises on many portions of Italy's history.

The book is characterised by the author's ability to sum up entire episodes and events very succinctly. So that you can grasp and hopefully remember the essence of a time, rather than just commit dates and facts to memory.

There was one remark in the text that intrigued me. It said that at the conclusion of the 3rd Punic War, the vengeful Roman senators, especially Cato, had all the surviving Cathaginians enslaved. Some 50 000 of them. Wow. The puzzling point was the suggestion that this led to the fall of the Roman Republic. In other more extensive accounts of the Punic War, I do not remember this causality being bruited about. Is there anything to it?e
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars History of a famous country. 4 Oct 2006
By Kevin M Quigg - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
When one thinks of Italy, one thinks of Rome and Mussolini. The author dispels these notions and shows us the true Italy. This is the birthplace of civilization and Empire. It was also the scene of the Black Death, city states, and the battleground of Europe. The author stages the story of Italy in nine easy to read chapters. One can get a short summary of the stages in Italy's development. This would be a nice read for those about to visit the country.

The one thing I fault this book for is that it tends to jump around. It mentions a name, and then latter on talks about this person. Other than that, there is a nice little summary of the history of this great nation.
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