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Customer reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
Kosovo: a Short History
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on 26 April 2015
Best single volume history of this troubled place. I know Kosovo quite well and found it a very helpful and revealing guide. A serious book by a serious historian, of course, but clearly and accessibly written too
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on 2 March 2015
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on 26 March 2015
Amazing book.
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on 13 October 2006
The material in this book has been well researched and interprets the sources with authority. This region has had a very complicated and a very long history, with different peoples interpreting the history in different ways. This books tries to establish the truth, and the truth is fascinating. It is a must for anyone wishing to get an insight into this region
11 people found this helpful
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on 6 April 2010
This Malcolm's book is even better then one on Bosnia as it offers more information and greater research.
Albeit being very complex, it is still easy to read offering a great insight into the Balkans history as opposite to a number of books published by Serbo-Tchetnik nazi movement which promotes lies about mythical Serbian history.
The service was also great and book offered at an unbeliveable price.
One person found this helpful
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on 12 September 2014
The most comprehensive book written on the region of Kosovo. A totally engaging account of the major historical changes up to the late Kosovo conflict.
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on 3 October 2012
A thorough history of an area which gets little coverage in the history section of most bookshops. Unfortunately, Kosovo has been the subject of much myth and rivalry and nationalist mythmaking; a significant percentage of the text is dedicated to debunking these - but always reliant on careful use of sources rather than rhetoric. It strikes just the right balance between readability and meticulous detail.

I would strongly recommend this book to anybody with a general interest in European (or even Ottoman) history.
2 people found this helpful
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on 29 October 2014
Great condition
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on 27 February 2009
I first made use of this book as an MA student with a highly-developed fascination with the former Yugoslavia. I found it, and Noel Malcolm's volume on Bosnia, invaluable.

Of particular note is the chapter exploring the (in)famous 1389 Battle of Kosovo Polje - Malcolm does a superb job in deconstructing the myths that have grown up around said battle (why did this particular battle become so important to the cause of Serbian nationalism?) and trying to get at the truth behind them.

My one concern with this book is why Malcolm thought to use the sub-title 'A Short History'; at over 500 pages, it's anything but!
3 people found this helpful
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on 6 July 2009
This was published in 1998 prior to the descent into conflict that separated Kosov from the remnants of Yugoslavia. If this book had been read and understood the conflict might well have been avoided.

Unlike the history of the west where history appears to have a direction, with countries becoming freer and more prosperous over the centuries- as in the Whig interpretation of English history- Kosovo seems to have spent most of its history buffeted bewteen far more powerful entities.

Both Serbs and Albanians have perceived identies in which they are the permanent victims of a more powerful enemy. In reality both sides have been both oppressors and oppressees at different junctures.

The demographic myths of the Serbs have been particularly destructive in the last hundred years, the idea that Kosovo was the core of Serbia until the Albanians in conjuction with the Ottomans ethnically cleansed them has been pernicious and used to justify the mistreatment of the Albanians. As Malcolm shows both communities have lived in the province for centuries and their relative proportions have changed to and fro over the years.

In short this is a very informative study that illuminates much of the difficult situation.
One person found this helpful
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