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A People's History of the World Hardcover – 11 Oct 1999

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 500 pages
  • Publisher: Bookmarks (11 Oct. 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1898876541
  • ISBN-13: 978-1898876540
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,905,092 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Synopsis

Harman looks at the history of the last five millennia. He argues that society has been divided between classes over this period, where class is defined in Marxist terms as relating to different relationships to the means of sustaining life.'


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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
If you want to have an understanding of the material basis of human history, this is the book to read. Instead of a list of kings, queens and other monarchs we have a complete explanation in terms of the material basis of civilisation. Why did civilisations arise at some many different points in human history, ie China, Babylon, Egypt, and why did they eventually fail? The clear explanation is in this book, which also at the same time gives a concise explanation of the origin of the major religions. Finally, Chris Harman, states his viewpoint that ultimately the aim is to change the exploitable basis of our society, ie capitalism.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is ambitious, thrilling, concise, informative and most importantly, it succeeds. Why did Rome fall? What about Christianity, Islam, Vietnam. What were the dark ages? What was the Reformation? What about the French Revolution and the American Civil War. And the Gulf wars. When did writing emerge? How and why? And how do they all relate to each other? Well written and impeccably researched. A monument to a genius.
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Format: Paperback
A great eye opening read, very different from the usual historical mass market rubbish centered on personalities of "famous people", usually written by historians who really are little more than tv chefs and hired hacks.

The book is perfectly structured and extremely coherent, full of interesting analysis and things you simply wont read about in the usual history books. Have you ever wondered why the Roman Empire collapsed? Did Jesus really exist? What lay behind the American Revolution? Why did the Islamic world or china not industrialize first? What are the origins of racism? Why did the French revolution fail? Did it Fail? What was Churchills real motivations to fight Germany? These and many other issues are discussed often in depth, but always in a way which is accessible to non academics.

I would rate this book on a par with "guns germs and steel" by Jared Diamond for its originality and ambition. Deserves to be more well known.

Thanks to the author for the well researched further reading section will keep me busy for a few years.
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