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The Resource A short history of Europe : from Pericles to Putin, Simon Jenkins

A short history of Europe : from Pericles to Putin, Simon Jenkins

Label
A short history of Europe : from Pericles to Putin
Title
A short history of Europe
Title remainder
from Pericles to Putin
Statement of responsibility
Simon Jenkins
Creator
Author
Subject
Language
eng
Summary
In just a few hundred years, a modest peninsula off the northwest corner of Asia has seen the rise and fall of several empires; served as the crucible for scientific dynamism, cultural innovation, and economic revolution; and witnessed cataclysms and bloodshed that have almost destroyed it several times over. This is Europe: a continent whose identity emerged not so much by virtue of geographic or ethnic continuity, but by a long and storied struggle for power. Studded with infamous figures--from Caesar to Charlemagne and Machiavelli to Marx--Simon Jenkins's history of Europe travels briskly from the Roman Empire, the Dark Ages, and the Reformation through the French Revolution, the World Wars, and the fall of the USSR. What emerges in this thrilling and expansive telling is a continent as defined by its continually clashing cultural identities and violent crises as it is by its tireless drive for a society based on the consent of the governed--which holds true right up to the present day. --
Writing style
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ British historian Jenkins (A Short History of England) turns his attention to continental Europe in this swift, engaging traditional political history. The book traces “the struggle of people for power over land” and “the extraordinary role of violence, and the technology of violence, in that narrative” in page-turner fashion. (Jenkins acknowledges that famines, plagues, and assorted natural calamities have played roles as well.) Although the primary focus is the men (and rare woman) who have wielded and lost power—among them Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Pope Gregory I, Charlemagne, William the Conqueror, Louis XIV, Catherine the Great, Napoleon, Bismarck, and Hitler—Jenkins does attend to the cultural and social milieu. “Pen portraits of people and ideas that are important to that story” pepper this history; artists, (Leonardo da Vinci) philosophers (Aristotle, Hegel) and writers (Tolstoy) play their parts. Jenkins also brings in the best work of other historians, from the ancient (Herodotus, Procopius) to the modern (Daniel Boorstin, Peter Frankopan). Entertaining morsels of legend, lore, and gossip add flavor, as when he describes Peter the Great as “brash, high-living, persistently drunk.” Readers of conventional histories—those of the victors, rather than what Jenkins calls “the victims of power”—will find this a pleasurable, erudite tour of 4,000 years of European politics. (Mar.)
			 --Staff (Reviewed 01/28/2019) (Publishers Weekly, vol 266, issue 5, p)
  • A concise and somewhat quirky treatment of European history from ancient times to the present. In a natural follow-up to A Short History of England (2011), Guardian and Evening Standard columnist Jenkins (Britain's Hundred Best Railway Stations, 2017, etc.) begins and ends with classical metaphors. He opens by noting how Europe was named for the place on the island of Crete where Zeus, after seducing the Phoenician princess Europa, swam with her to engender a new civilization. The author ends with the story of the magnificent Piraeus lion, carved in Greece in the fourth century B.C.E. and removed to Venice, where it stands outside the Arsenal in Venice, revealing what Jenkins sees as a metaphor "to free ourselves from our own place in history and see the past as a distant land." Indeed, the cultural currents forming Europe and shaping its destiny have been staggering. From the ascendancy of Rome to its overrun by barbarian invaders to the establishment of a Frankish kingdom by Charlemagne to the invasions of the Vikings, Europe experienced a violent founding characterized by many forced migrations of diverse peoples. Yet it has also been the crucible of enlightened civilizations, from the enterprising Scandinavian tribes to the Norman builders to the rise of powerful nation-states to the galvanizing ideas of the Renaissance and Reformation. Throughout this chronological work, Jenkins touches on many usual suspects—e.g., Julius Caesar, Constantine, Catherine de' Medici, Louis XIV, Napoleon, Hitler, and Putin—yet he deals with schisms and wars of dynasty with admirable restraint, distilling the research to the bare essentials. He organizes his work by themes such as "The Old Order's Last Cry: 1840-1850," and he manages to capture the dwindling "strains" of a disunited present-day Europe. The 20 pages of maps at the beginning, as well as the timeline, are endlessly helpful in navigating this vast history. Jenkins says it best: "This short book is aimed at those without the time and inclination for a longer one." An accomplished introduction for any nonscholar interested in European history. (Kirkus Reviews, January 1, 2019)
Assigning source
Goodreads
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10762931
Cataloging source
YDX
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Jenkins, Simon
Dewey number
940
Illustrations
  • illustrations
  • maps
  • portraits
  • plates
Index
index present
LC call number
D13.5.E85
LC item number
J46 2019
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
Europe
Target audience
adult
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
from Pericles to Putin
Label
A short history of Europe : from Pericles to Putin, Simon Jenkins
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 315-316) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • still image
  • cartographic image
Content type code
  • txt
  • sti
  • cri
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Dimensions
25 cm
Edition
First US edition.
Extent
xvii, 354 pages, 20, 32 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781541788558
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations (chiefly color), maps, portraits (chiefly color)
System control number
  • on1051135343
  • (OCoLC)1051135343
Label
A short history of Europe : from Pericles to Putin, Simon Jenkins
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 315-316) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • still image
  • cartographic image
Content type code
  • txt
  • sti
  • cri
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Dimensions
25 cm
Edition
First US edition.
Extent
xvii, 354 pages, 20, 32 unnumbered pages of plates
Isbn
9781541788558
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations (chiefly color), maps, portraits (chiefly color)
System control number
  • on1051135343
  • (OCoLC)1051135343

Library Locations

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      515 Scotland Street, Williamsburg, VA, 23185, US
      37.377573 -76.770995
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