29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
A BRILLIANT OVERVIEW OF 20TH CENTURY EUROPE,
This review is from: Thinking the Twentieth Century: Intellectuals and Politics in the Twentieth Century (Hardcover)'Thinking the Twentieth Century' is the best book on European history to appear for many years. Its genesis is unusual. When Tony Judt realized he was dying, he engaged in a series of conversations with Timothy Snyder. This book is the outcome. Timothy Snyder prompts and Tony Judt conducts a course on recent European history, with a little American history thrown in for good measure. In the process, Tony Judt gives a far more detailed autobiography than we got in 'The Memory Chalet.'
Overwhelmingly, it is a book about ideas and their influence. Almost every page contains new insights into some of the most written-about events in history. (My only reservation is that the book presupposes that the reader is familiar not only with events but the ideas of figures such as Hayek, and Koestler.) That such a book was produced by a man gravely ill with a degenerative disease is a triumph of the human spirit.
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Initial post: 9 Jun 2012 07:36:23 BDT
Not Mark Twain says:
Thanks for your useful review. Your caveat concerning the presumption of the reader's familiarity with Hayek and Koestler is certainly relevant to me! Nevertheless, one of the benefits of reading Tony Judt's books as far as I am concerned is that they introduce me to people and ideas that I have never encountered before.
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