13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 30 January 2011
'Early Modern Europe: An Oxford History' is a fascinating and rewarding introduction to the early modern period. Themes from the 16th to the end of the 18th centuries are described and contextualised with a clarity of vision that should leave the reader feeling very confident in their understanding of all the major events, processes, and figures of the time. Economics, dynastic politics, internal politics of nascent nation states, renaisance and reformation ideas, colonisation and technology are all covered in a coherent and satisfying way.
This book is far superior to what would seem to be its nearest bookshelf rival - 'Early Modern Europe, 1450-1789' by Merry E. Wiesner-Hanks, which perhaps suffers a little from being too bogged down with its strange over-emphasis on gender issues, and perculiar thematic scheme.
I am giving 'Early Modern Europe: An Oxford History' 5 stars because:
a) it is very readable
b) it it comprehensive
c) it provides clarity on potentially confusing issues
d) it uses logical thematic schemes
e) it will leave you with a clear idea of the main political and social events and processes of the period. brilliant!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 29 March 2013
I bought this for my module at university on Early Modern Europe, and it has been extremely helpful in giving me a general overview of different aspects of life, warfare, and government in three different centuries.
The contents page is very helpful: each century is a different section and the various essays within each century have been given clear titles. These are then broken down further in the contents into subcategories to help you find exactly what you're looking for.
The essays I have read so far are well written and informative, and are a good length. They contain considerable content, but normally within about 20 pages.