ABBEY'S CHOICE OCTOBER 2016
----- Not so long ago we timed our lives by the movement of the sun. These days our time arrives atomically and insistently, and our lives are propelled by the notion that we will never have enough of the one thing we crave the most. How have we come to be dominated by something so arbitrary?
The compelling stories in this book explore our obsessions with time. An Englishman arrives back from Calcutta but refuses to adjust his watch. Beethoven has his symphonic wishes ignored. A moment of war is frozen forever. The timetable arrives by steam train. A woman designs a ten-hour clock and reinvents the calendar. Roger Bannister becomes stuck in the same four minutes forever. A British watchmaker competes with mighty Switzerland. And a prince attempts to stop time in its tracks.
Timekeepers is a vivid exploration of the ways we have perceived, contained and saved time over the last 250 years, narrated in the highly inventive and entertaining style that bestselling author Simon Garfield is fast making his own. As managing time becomes the greatest challenge we face in our lives, this multi-layered history helps us tackle it in a sparkling new light.
In the early 1800's, on a Hebridean beach in Scotland, the sea exposed an ancient treasure cache: 93 chessmen carved from walrus ivory. Norse netsuke, each face individual, each full of quirks, the Lewis Chessmen are probably the most famous chess pieces in the world. Harry played Wizard's Chess with them in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. Housed at the British Museum, they are among its most visited and beloved objects. Questions abounded: Who carved them? Where? Ivory Vikings explores these mysteries by connecting medieval Icelandic sagas with modern archaeology, art history, forensics, and the history of board games. In the process, Ivory Vikings presents a vivid history of the 400 years when the Vikings ruled the North Atlantic, and the sea-road connected countries and islands we think of as far apart and culturally distinct: Nonrvay and Scotland, Ireland and Iceland, and Greenland and North America. The story of the Lewis chessmen explains the economic lure behind the Viking voyages to the west in the 800s and 900s. And finally, it brings from the shadows an extraordinarily talented woman artist of the twelfth century: Margret the Adroit of Iceland.
An extraordinary exploration of the medieval world - the most beguiling history book of the year.
This is a book about why medieval manuscripts matter. Coming face to face with an important illuminated manuscript in the original is like meeting a very famous person. We may all pretend that a well-known celebrity is no different from anyone else, and yet there is an undeniable thrill in actually meeting and talking to a person of world stature.
The idea for the book, which is entirely new, is to invite the reader into intimate conversations with twelve of the most famous manuscripts in existence and to explore with the author what they tell us about nearly a thousand years of medieval history - and sometimes about the modern world too.
Christopher de Hamel introduces us to kings, queens, saints, scribes, artists, librarians, thieves, dealers, collectors and the international community of manuscript scholars, showing us how he and his fellows piece together evidence to reach unexpected conclusions. He traces the elaborate journeys which these exceptionally precious artefacts have made through time and space, shows us how they have been copied, who has owned them or lusted after them (and how we can tell), how they have been embroiled in politics and scholarly disputes, how they have been regarded as objects of supreme beauty and luxury and as symbols of national identity.
The book touches on religion, art, literature, music, science and the history of taste. Part travel book, part detective story, part conversation with the reader, Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts conveys the fascination and excitement of encountering some of the greatest works of art in our culture which, in the originals, are to most people completely inaccessible. At the end, we have a slightly different perspective on history and how we come by knowledge. It is a most unusual book.
The Pax Romana is famous for having provided a remarkable period of peace and stability, rarely seen before or since. Yet the Romans were first and foremost conquerors, imperialists who took by force a vast empire stretching from the Euphrates in the east to the Atlantic coast in the west. Their peace meant Roman victory and was brought about by strength and dominance rather than co-existence with neighbours. The Romans were aggressive and ruthless, and during the creation of their empire millions died or were enslaved.
But the Pax Romana was real, not merely the boast of emperors, and some of the regions in the Empire have never again lived for so many generations free from major wars. So what exactly was the Pax Romana and what did it mean for the people who found themselves brought under Roman rule?
Acclaimed historian Adrian Goldsworthy tells the story of the creation of the Empire, revealing how and why the Romans came to control so much of the world and asking whether the favourable image of the Roman peace is a true one. He chronicles the many rebellions by the conquered, and describes why these broke out and why most failed. At the same time, he explains that hostility was only one reaction to the arrival of Rome, and from the start there was alliance, collaboration and even enthusiasm for joining the invaders, all of which increased as resistance movements faded away.
A ground-breaking and comprehensive history of the Roman Peace, Pax Romana takes the reader on a journey from the bloody conquests of an aggressive Republic through the age of Caesar and Augustus to the golden age of peace and prosperity under diligent emperors like Marcus Aurelius, offering a balanced and nuanced reappraisal of life in the Roman Empire.
Over a century before Mabo and generations before 'Terra Nullius, Aboriginal land rights were briefly acknowledged by the early colonists of South Australia and Victoria. The way to Hell is paved with good intentions. Lust for land snuffed out hopes for a fair go, as the original owners of the land were pushed to the margins.
This book looks at the way colonists exploited humanitarian rhetoric developed by Englands anti-slavery movement to oust Aboriginal claims; how they reinvented the Common Law of property to secure their own title, twisting legal analysis and economic theory to suit their aims.
It also explores interactions between colonists and governments in Hobart, Sydney and London.
Unlike many writers on the early colonial period, Hannah Robert takes full account of legal and bureaucratic sources.
The book also has many interesting illustrations.
The marines on the First Fleet refused to sail without it. Convicts risked their necks to get hold of it.
Rum built a hospital and sparked a revolution, made fortunes and ruined lives.
In a society with few luxuries, liquor was power. It played a crucial role, not just in the lives of individuals like James Squire - the London chicken thief who became Australia's first brewer - but in the transformation of a starving penal outpost into a prosperous trading port.
Drawing on a wealth of contemporary sources, Grog offers an intoxicating look at the first decades of European settlement and explores the origins of Australia's fraught love affair with the hard stuff.
A richly illustrated expose of development scandals and political corruption in NSW.
Looks close up at the railways and tramways of Sydney; the colourful characters who ran NSW; shifting political factions that delivered their power; the developers who financed Henry Parkes and other government leaders, and the Sydney suburbs laid out to suit their interests; and the dismal planning failures of the late 1870s and 80s that haunt Sydney still.
A meticulous account of late colonial times when NSW was governed to suit developers and greedy politicians, no less than in the 21st century.
The massive transformation of Sydney and its outskirts from then on is startling; the old flaws of the NSW government even more so.
In 1971, when the racially selected all-white Springbok rugby team toured Australia, we became a nation at war with ourselves.
There was bloodshed as tens of thousands of anti-Apartheid campaigners clashed with governments, police and rugby fans: who were given free reign to assault protestors.
Queensland premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen declared a State of Emergency. Prime minister William McMahon called the seven Wallabies who refused to play 'national disgraces'. Barbed wire ringed the great rugby grounds to stop protestors invading the field.
Pitched Battle recreates what became one of the most rancorous periods in modern Australian history - a time of courage, pain, faith, fanaticism and political opportunism - which made heroes of the Wallabies who refused to play, played a key role in the later political careers of Peter Beattie, Meredith Burgmann and Peter Hain, and ultimately contributed to the abandonment of Apartheid.
Swallowed by the Sea tells the stories of Australia’s greatest and most tragic shipwrecks, lost in raging storms, on jagged reefs, under enemy fire, or through human error, treachery or incompetence.
Read about the oldest known wreck in Australian waters, the Tryal, driven into a maze of sunken rocks by the inept and reluctant Captain Brookes, and about Australia’s worst civil disaster at sea, the loss of emigrant barque Cataraqui, which struck a reef off King Island in the middle of a stormy night, careened over onto its port side and then broke up, eventually disappearing under the water along with more than 400 men, women and children.
The violent wrecking of ships is only part of the story. Maritime archaeologist Graeme Henderson has personally located and dived many of the shipwrecks in this book. He describes diving in heavy turbulence to raise sandstone blocks and artillery pieces from the Batavia, the eerie experience of looking up at the jagged undercut cliffs that bore witness to the drowning of asylum seekers on SIEV 221, and swimming the length of the 50-metre HMS Pandora wreck, recording iron cannon, copper sheathing and other objects immune to the wood-devouring marine worms.
Alongside historical paintings and photographs of original objects, the book includes colour underwater photographs of the dive sites with specially written recollections by members of the diving crew.
From English and Dutch trading vessels in the seventeenth century to emigrant ships in the nineteenth century and the great warships of the Second World War, Swallowed by the Sea explains how each ship was wrecked and discovered, and what remains of the wrecks today.
While most of us live in cities clinging to the coastal fringe, our sense of what an Australian is, or should be, is drawn from the vast and varied inland called the bush. But what do we mean by 'the bush', and how has it shaped us? Starting with his forebears' battle to drive back nature and eke a living from the land, Don Watson explores the bush as it was and as it now is- the triumphs and the ruination, the commonplace and the bizarre, the stories we like to tell about ourselves and the national character, and those we don't. A milestone work of memoir, travel writing and history, The Bush takes us on a profoundly revelatory and entertaining journey through the Australian landscape and character.
In March 1797, five British sailors and 12 Bengali seamen struggled ashore after their longboat broke apart in a storm. Their fellow survivors from the wreck of the Sydney Cove were stranded 500 kilometres southeast in Bass Strait. To rescue their mates and save themselves, the 19 men must walk 700 kilometres north to Sydney. That remarkable walk is a story of endurance, but also of unexpected Aboriginal help.
From the Edge: Australia's Lost Histories recounts four such extraordinary and largely forgotten stories:
- the walk of shipwreck survivors;
- the founding of a 'new Singapore' in western Arnhem Land in the 1840s;
- Australia's largest industrial development project nestled among outstanding Indigenous rock art in the Pilbara;
- the ever-changing story of James Cook's time in Cooktown in 1770.
This new telling of the central drama of Australian history - the encounter between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians - may hold the key to understanding this land and its people.
For 30 years AUSTRALIAN GEOGRAPHIC journalists have revealed the rich diversity of a nation. From schoolyards to parliament and the outback to the ocean, they have reported on Australia and Australians, both ordinary and extraordinary, going about their daily lives. Within these pages are photographs of landscapes both intimate and infinite, compelling portraits of people in joy or in grief; native wildlife and plant life in stunning detail and astonishing clarity; rare glimpses of industry and endeavour and the individuals that drive them; and remarkable views captured by adventurers and explorers on expedition. Inside this beautiful compendium of stories from a rich, 30 year history of examining the very best of Australia's nature, culture, people and places is a portrait of Australia beyond the urban and suburban fringe.
Australia and the British monarchy have an undeniably special relationship, yet they have always made for an odd couple- the rebellious, egalitarian nation wedded to an ancient symbol of social inequality. So what is the magic the royals hold over Australians? Queen Victoria was revered in Australia, even though she'd never seen the place and showed little interest in it. When her son Prince Alfred visited in 1867, on the first ever royal tour of Australia, he was received rapturously, and nearly assassinated. In 1954 Australia was gripped by royal fever when newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II landed on its shores; and more than sixty years later, having turned 90, she is as popular in Australia as she ever was. Not only that, but with the popularity of William, Kate, George and Charlotte burgeoning, against the odds the monarchy looks set to enter the hearts and minds of a new generation of Australians. As one of our most popular writers of Australian history, David Hill guides us with panache through this most peculiar state of affairs.
In the first volume of The Story of Australia's People: The Rise and Fall of Ancient Australia, Professor Geoffrey Blainey returned to the subject of his most celebrated works on Australian history, Triumph of the Nomads (1975) and A Land Half Won (1980), telling the story of our history up until 1850.
Now in the second volume of The Story of Australia's People: The Rise and Rise of a New Australia, Blainey continues his account of the history of this country from the early Gold Rush to the present day, completing the story of our nation and its people.
When Europeans crossed the world to plant a new society in an unknown land, traditional life for Australia's first inhabitants changed forever.
For the new arrivals, Australia was a land that rewarded, tricked, tantalised and often defeated.
From the Gold Rush to Land Rights and the Digital Age, Blainey brings to life the key events of more recent times that have shaped us into the nation and people we are today.
Compelling, groundbreaking and brilliantly readable, The Story of Australia's People Volume 2 is the second instalment of an ambitious work and the culmination of the lifework of Australia's most prolific and wide-ranging historian.
The fourth volume of Peter Ackroyd's enthralling History of England begins in 1688 with a revolution and ends in 1815 with a famous victory.
Ackroyd takes readers from William of Orange's accession following the Glorious Revolution to the Regency, when the flamboyant Prince of Wales ruled in the stead of his mad father, George III, and England was again at war with France, a war that ended with the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo.
Late Stuart and Georgian England marked the creation of the great pillars of the English state. The Bank of England and the stock exchange were founded, the Church of England was fully established as the guardian of the spiritual life of the nation, and parliament became the sovereign body of the nation with responsibilities and duties far beyond those of the monarch. It was also a revolutionary era in English letters, a time in which newspapers first flourished and the English novel was born.
It was an era in which coffee houses and playhouses boomed, gin flowed freely and shops, as we know them today, began to proliferate in towns and villages. It was also a time of extraordinary and unprecedented technological innovation, which saw England utterly and irrevocably transformed from a country of blue skies and farmland to one of soot, steel and coal.
A beautiful, quirky, illustrated edition of Phaidon's compelling bestseller, celebrating the book's 25th anniversary.
This concise, fast-paced introduction to English history keeps the reader enthralled through the entire course of the country's political, economic and cultural landscape, covering the whole sweep of English history from the Stone Age to the present.
Its flowing narrative style, character sketches and lively anecdotes bring the people and places of the past to life.
In this newly illustrated edition, John Broadley's unique, tableaux-like illustrations capture the landscape, costumes and characters of the history that Hibbert's text so vividly evokes.
'The most ingenious, insightful, inspiring, intoxicating, and simply interesting guide to the great city that I have ever seen' Philip Pullman 'The greatest book about London published in modern times' Londonist Curiocity is a new A to Z exploring every aspect of life in London. Its 26 chapters weave together the city's stories with striking reflections, practical ideas and itineraries, and contributions from London voices such as Monica Ali and Iain Sinclair. The book is illustrated by artists including Chris Riddell, Isabel Greenberg and Steven Appleby, and at the heart of each chapter is an original hand-drawn map, charting everything from the city's international communities, underground spaces and children's dreams, to its unrealised plans, erogenous zones and dystopian futures. Curiocity is a unique guide that will transform the way you see and experience London.
The Nazis presented themselves as warriors against moral degeneracy. Yet, as Norman Ohler's gripping history reveals, the entire Third Reich was permeated with drugs - cocaine, heroin, morphine and, most of all, methamphetamines, or crystal meth, used by everyone from factory workers to housewives, and crucial to troops' resilience - even partly explaining German victory in 1940.
The promiscuous use of drugs at the highest levels also impaired and confused decision-making, with Hitler and his entourage taking refuge in potentially lethal cocktails of stimulants administered by physician Dr Morell as the war turned against Germany.
While drugs cannot on their own explain the events of WWII or its outcome, Ohler shows they change our understanding of it.
Blitzed forms a crucial missing piece of the story.
The Pursuit of Power draws on a lifetime of thinking about 19th-century Europe to create an extraordinarily rich, surprising and entertaining panorama of a continent undergoing drastic transformation.
The book aims to reignite the sense of wonder that permeated this remarkable era, as rulers and ruled navigated overwhelming cultural, political and technological changes. It was a time where what was seen as modern soon appeared old-fashioned, where huge cities sprang up in a generation, new European countries were created and where, for the first time, humans could communicate almost instantly over thousands of miles.
In the period bounded by the Battle of Waterloo and the outbreak of World War I, Europe dominated the rest of the world as never before or since. This book breaks new ground by showing how the continent shaped, and was shaped by, its interactions with other parts of the globe.
Richard Evans explores the revolutions, empire-building and wars that marked the 19th century, but this book is about so much more, whether it be illness, serfdom, religion or philosophy.
The Pursuit of Power is a work by an historian at the height of his powers. It is essential reading for anyone trying to understand Europe, then or now.
In his fascinating new book, acclaimed historian Greg Grandin argues that to understand the crisis of contemporary America - its never-ending wars abroad and political polarisation at home - we have to understand Henry Kissinger. Examining Kissinger's own writings, as well as a wealth of newly declassified documents, Grandin reveals how Richard Nixon's top foreign policy advisor, even as he was presiding over defeat in Vietnam and a disastrous, secret, and illegal war in Cambodia, was helping to revive a militarised version of American exceptionalism centred on an imperial presidency. Believing that reality could be bent to his will, insisting that intuition is more important in determining policy than hard facts, and vowing that past mistakes should never hinder future bold action, Kissinger anticipated, even enabled, the ascendance of the neoconservative idealists who took America into crippling wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The first-ever illustrated account of Captain James Cook's epic eighteenth-century voyages, complete with excerpts from his vivid journals.
This is history's greatest adventure story. In 1766, the Royal Society chose prodigal mapmaker and navigator James Cook to lead a South Pacific voyage. His orders were to chart the path of Venus across the sun. That task completed, his ship, the HMSEndeavour, continued to comb the southern hemisphere for the imagined continentTerra Australis. The voyage lasted from 1768 to 1771, and upon Cook's return to London, his journaled accounts of the expedition made him a celebrity. After that came two more voyages for Cook and his crew, followed by Cook's untimely murder by natives in Hawaii. The Voyages of Captain James Cook reveals Cook's fascinating story through excerpts from his journals, as well as illustrations, photography, and supplementary writings.
During Cook's career, he logged more than 200,000 miles - nearly the distance to the moon. And along the way, scientists and artists traveling with him documented exotic flora and fauna, untouched landscapes, indigenous peoples, and much more. In addition to the South Pacific, Cook's voyages took him to South America, Antarctica, New Zealand, the Pacific Coast from California to Alaska, the Arctic Circle, Siberia, the East Indies, and the Indian Ocean. When he set out in 1768, more than one-third of the globe was unmapped. By the time Cook died in 1779, he had created charts so accurate that some were used into the 1990s.
The Voyages of Captain James Cook is a handsome illustrated edition of Cook's selected writings spanning his Pacific voyages, ending in 1779 with the delivery of his salted scalp and hands to his surviving crewmembers. It's bound to enthrall anyone who appreciates history, science, art, and classic adventure.
Passchendaele epitomises everything that was most terrible about the Western Front. The images of this four-month battle, fought from July to November 1917, are unforgettable: blackened tree stumps rising out of a field of mud, corpses of men and horses drowned in shell holes, terrified soldiers huddled in trenches awaiting the whistle.
The intervening century, the most violent in human history, has not disarmed these pictures of their power to shock. At the very least they ask us, on the 100th anniversary of the battle, to try to understand what happened here. Yes, we commemorate the event. Yes, we adorn our breasts with poppies. But have we truly understood? Have we dared to reason why? What happened at Passchendaele was the expression of the 'wearing-down war', a war of pure attrition at its most spectacular and ferocious.
Paul Ham's Passchendaele: Requiem for Doomed Youth shows how ordinary men on both sides endured a constant state of siege with a very real awareness that they were being gradually, deliberately, wiped out. Yet the men never broke: they went over the top when ordered, again and again and again. And if they fell dead or wounded, they were casualties in the 'normal wastage', as the commanders described them, of attritional war.
Only the soldier's friends at the Front knew him as a man, with thoughts and feelings. His family back home knew him as a son, husband or brother, before he had enlisted. By the end of 1917, he was a different creature: his experiences were simply beyond their powers of comprehension.
The book tells the story of ordinary men in the grip of a political and military power struggle that determined their fate and foreshadowed the destiny of the world for a century.
Passchendaele lays down a powerful challenge to the idea of war as an inevitable expression of the human will and examines the culpability of governments and military commanders in a catastrophe that destroyed the best part of a generation.
For the Western Allies, 11 November 1918 has always been a solemn date - the end of the fighting that had destroyed a generation, and vindication of a terrible sacrifice with the total collapse of their principal enemies: the German Empire, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire. But for much of the rest of Europe, this day had far less meaning, as a continuing, nightmarish series of conflicts engulfed country after country.
In this highly original, gripping book, Robert Gerwarth asks us to think again about the true legacy of the First World War. In large part it was not so much the fighting on the Western front that proved so ruinous to Europe's future, but the devastating aftermath, as countries on both sides of the original conflict were wrecked by revolution, pogroms, mass expulsions and further military clashes.
If the War itself had in most places been a struggle purely between state-backed soldiers, these new conflicts were mainly about civilians and paramilitaries, and millions of people died across central, eastern and south-eastern Europe before the USSR and a series of rickety and exhausted small new states came into being.
Everywhere there were vengeful people, their lives racked by a murderous sense of injustice, looking for the opportunity to take retribution against enemies real and imaginary.
Only a decade later, the rise of the Third Reich and other totalitarian states provided them with the opportunity they had been looking for.
Despite dramatic advances over the centuries in technology and equipment, there is one vital piece of kit in most explorers' pockets that hasn't changed much at all - the journal.
The sketchbooks and journals presented here allow us the opportunity to share, through their own eyes and thoughts, the on-the-spot reactions of around 70 intrepid individuals as they journeyed into frozen wastes, high mountains, barren deserts and rich rainforests.
Some are well known - Captain Scott, Charles Darwin, Thor Heyerdahl and Abel Tasman. Others are unfamiliar, including Adela Breton, who braved the jungles of Mexico to make an unparalleled record of Maya monuments, and Alexandrine Tinne, who died in her attempt to be the first woman to cross the Sahara.
Here are pioneering explorers and map-makers, botanists and artists, ecologists and anthropologists, eccentrics and visionaries, men and women.
A handful of living explorers, including Wade Davis, provide their thoughts on the art of exploration.
Often battered and neglected, stored away and perhaps long forgotten, many of these sketchbooks have themselves awaited rediscovery. Now is the chance to open them again...
So often in history, it is ideas that kill ... How did the Islamic State arise? What are the ideas that define it? How does this movement of apocalyptic violence justify its actions? The Mind of the Islamic State offers a condensed and gripping history of political jihadism - from its birth in the 1960s prison writings of Sayyid Qutb all the way to IS's glossy magazine of horror, Dabiq. Along the way Robert Manne considers such terrifying texts as The Management of Savagery and such diabolical figures as al-Zarqawi, who devised the strategy of pitting Sunni against Shia in Iraq, thereby helping to pull the country apart. Manne traces the way ideas and events have intersected to produce the Islamic State, and shows that many in the West have failed to understand what we are dealing with.
From the secret SAS archives, and acclaimed author Ben Macintyre: the first ever authorized history of the SAS 'Impeccably researched, superbly told - by far the best book on the SAS in World War II' - Antony Beevor In the summer of 1941, at the height of the war in the Western Desert, a bored and eccentric young officer, David Stirling, came up with a plan that was radical and entirely against the rules: a small undercover unit that would inflict mayhem behind enemy lines. Despite intense opposition, Winston Churchill personally gave Stirling permission to recruit the toughest, brightest and most ruthless soldiers he could find. So began the most celebrated and mysterious military organisation in the world: the SAS. Now, 75 years later, the SAS has finally decided to tell its astonishing story. It has opened its secret archives for the first time, granting historian Ben Macintyre full access to a treasure trove of unseen reports, memos, diaries, letters, maps and photographs, as well as free rein to interview surviving Originals and those who knew them. The result is an exhilarating tale of fearlessness and heroism, recklessness and tragedy; of extraordinary men who were willing to take monumental risks. It is a story about the meaning of courage.
The religious thinkers, political leaders, law-makers, writers and philosophers of the early Muslim world helped to shape the 1,400-year-long development of today's second-largest world religion. But who were these people? What do we know of their lives, and the ways in which they influenced their societies?
Chase F. Robinson draws on the long tradition in Muslim scholarship of commemorating in writing the biographies of notable figures, but weaves these ambitious lives together to create a rich narrative of early Islamic civilization, from the Prophet Muhammad to fearsome Tamerlane. Beginning in Islam's heartland, Mecca, we move across Arabia to follow Islam's journey across North Africa, as far as Spain in the West, and eastwards through Central and East Asia; we see the rise and fall of Islamic states through the political and military leaders working to secure peace or expand their power, and, within this political climate, the development of Islamic law, scientific thought and literature through the words of the scholars who devoted themselves to these pursuits.
Alongside the famous characters who coloured this landscape, including Muhammad's controversial cousin, 'Ali; the first Sultan of Egypt, Saladin; and the poet Rumi, the reader will also meet less well-known figures, such as Shajar al-Durr, slave-turned-Sultana of Egypt, and Ibn Fadlan, whose travels in Eurasia brought first-hand accounts of the Volka Vikings to the Abbasid Caliph.
When Charlemagne died in 814 CE, he left behind a dominion and a legacy unlike anything seen in Western Europe since the fall of Rome. Distinguished historian and author of The Middle Ages Johannes Fried presents a new biographical study of the legendary Frankish king and emperor, illuminating the life and reign of a ruler who shaped Europe's destiny in ways few figures, before or since, have equaled.
Living in an age of faith, Charlemagne was above all a Christian king, Fried says. He made his court in Aix-la-Chapelle the center of a religious and intellectual renaissance, enlisting the Anglo-Saxon scholar Alcuin of York to be his personal tutor, and insisting that monks be literate and versed in rhetoric and logic. He erected a magnificent cathedral in his capital, decorating it lavishly while also dutifully attending Mass every morning and evening. And to an extent greater than any ruler before him, Charlemagne enhanced the papacy's influence, becoming the first king to enact the legal principle that the pope was beyond the reach of temporal justice'a decision with fateful consequences for European politics for centuries afterward.
Though devout, Charlemagne was not saintly. He was a warrior-king, intimately familiar with violence and bloodshed. And he enjoyed worldly pleasures, including physical love. Though there are aspects of his personality we can never know with certainty, Fried paints a compelling portrait of a ruler, a time, and a kingdom that deepens our understanding of the man often called 'the father of Europe.'?
The image of the visionary Celt has captured the modern imagination. Whether it be the woad-painted pagan warrior fighting for his freedom against distant rulers (be they Roman, English or French), or the fanatical druid harrying Roman legionaries through the treacherous and mist-drenched forests of north Wales, the Celtic idea represents a proud and fierce independence.
Yet there is another sort of Celtism: represented by the calligraphy and austere spirituality of the monks who illuminated the Book of Kells, or by that distinctive separateness characterizing the so-called 'Celtic fringe' of Britain (host to still-living Celtic languages). But as Alex Woolf shows, even these contemporary associations do the Celts less than justice. Northern and western Britain are merely the last redoubts of what was once a mighty and far-flung iron-age civilization, whose settlements extended from Anatolia and the lower Danube to Ireland and Spain. Alex Woolf looks at Celtic culture in its entirety, concentrating especially on the unifying Celtic language. He traces the Celts' development from their beginnings to their seventh-century nadir, when they ceased to be a single community.
Encompassing Celtic religion, Romano-Celtic conflict and cohabitation, late antiquity, Celtic Christianity, Celtic art and the contested notion of a 'Celtic heritage', the author offers a fresh and illuminating history of the Celts and their legacy.
Martial Arts researcher Antony Cummins reveals the hitherto hidden world of Viking hand-to-hand combat, which employed the sword, the spear, the axe and the shield. Based upon a careful analysis of the Viking sagas, the techniques described are recreated precisely, from knocking down a spear in mid-flight to the shield cleave. Illustrated with over 250 images, The Illustrated Guide to Viking Martial Arts in effect represents the earliest combat manual in the world. This insight into the warriors who were the scourge of Dark Age Europe is a feat of textual interpretation - and imagination.
'Man perishes; his corpse turns to dust; all his relatives pass away. But writings make him remembered' In ancient Egypt, words had magical power. Inscribed on tombs and temple walls, coffins and statues, or inked onto papyri, hieroglyphs give us a unique insight into the life of the Egyptian mind. For this remarkable new collection, Egyptologist Toby Wilkinson has freshly translated a rich and diverse range of ancient Egyptian writings into modern English, including tales of shipwreck and wonder, first-hand accounts of battles and natural disasters, obelisk inscriptions, mortuary spells, funeral hymns, songs, satires and advice on life from a pharaoh to his son. Spanning over two millennia, with many pieces appearing in a general anthology for the first time, this is the essential guide to a complex, sophisticated culture. Translated with an introduction by Toby Wilkinson
John Boardman has updated his classic account of one of the most popular historic artistic traditions among Western audiences. In the twenty years since the last edition was released, valuable evidence has come to light which has dramatically enhanced our understanding of the art of this ancient civilization. We now know conclusively that Greeks in fact lavished their sculptures with realistic colour paint, and also worked with a wealth of other materials on a major scale, including wood and precious metals, proving that our view of 'classic' pure white marble of the age is a Renaissance construction. We can identify the work of individual artists, and schools of artists, and have a clearer picture than ever of how art and artistic ideas travelled throughout the Greek world. Boardman encourages the reader to consider the beautiful pieces that have been preserved in their original context, rather than as the isolated installations of our modern galleries, weaving into the discussion of the art objects insights into the society that produced them. Illustrated in full colour throughout for the first time, this fifth edition showcases more vividly than ever the artistic endeavours of the ancient Greeks.
Lord Byron described Greece as great, fallen, and immortal, a characterization more apt than he knew. Through most of its long history, Greece was poor. But in the classical era, Greece was densely populated and highly urbanized. Many surprisingly healthy Greeks lived in remarkably big houses and worked for high wages at specialized occupations. Middle-class spending drove sustained economic growth and classical wealth produced a stunning cultural efflorescence lasting hundreds of years.
Why did Greece reach such heights in the classical period and why only then? And how, after "the Greek miracle" had endured for centuries, did the Macedonians defeat the Greeks, seemingly bringing an end to their glory? Drawing on a massive body of newly available data and employing novel approaches to evidence, Josiah Ober offers a major new history of classical Greece and an unprecedented account of its rise and fall.
Ober argues that Greece's rise was no miracle but rather the result of political breakthroughs and economic development. The extraordinary emergence of citizen-centered city-states transformed Greece into a society that defeated the mighty Persian Empire. Yet Philip and Alexander of Macedon were able to beat the Greeks in the Battle of Chaeronea in 338 BCE, a victory made possible by the Macedonians' appropriation of Greek innovations. After Alexander's death, battle-hardened warlords fought ruthlessly over the remnants of his empire. But Greek cities remained populous and wealthy, their economy and culture surviving to be passed on to the Romans and to us.
A compelling narrative filled with uncanny modern parallels, this is a book for anyone interested in how great civilizations are born and die.
Hubert de Burgh rose from obscure beginnings to become one of the most powerful men in England. He loyally served first King John and then the young Henry III and played a crucial role in saving the Plantagenet dynasty when it was at its most vulnerable. During King John's disastrous wars in France, Hubert held Chinon castle against the besieging French for a whole year. He remained loyal when the Barons rebelled against John and, when they invited French invaders to intervene, Hubert successfully held Dover Castle for the king against a siege led by the French Prince Louis. After John's death, he held it for the new king, 9-year old Henry, against a renewed siege. In August 2017 he struck the final blow against the French invasion, which still held London, when he defeated a powerful fleet carrying French reinforcements at the naval Battle of Sandwich. Hubert continued to serve Henry III, making important reforms as Justiciar of England and leading military campaigns against the Welsh Prince Lewellyn. He eventually lost favour due to the machinations of his rivals and narrowly avoided execution but was eventually reconciled with his king and able to die a peaceful death.Incredibly, this is the first full-length biography of this remarkable man.
When a band of Norman adventurers arrived in southern Italy to fight in the Lombard insurrections against the Byzantine empire in the early 1000s, few would have predicted that within a few generations, by force of arms, some of these men and other later arrivals would seize control of Apulia, Campania, Calabria and Sicily. How did they make such extraordinary gains and then consolidate their power?
Paul Brown, in this thoroughly researched and absorbing study, seeks to answer these questions and throw light onto the Norman conquests across the Mediterranean which were even more remarkable than those achieved in France and England.Throughout he focuses on the military side of their progress, as they advanced from mercenaries to conquerors, then crusaders. The story of the campaigns they undertook in Italy, Sicily, the Balkans and the Near East, of the battles and sieges that marked their expansion, reveals their remarkable talent for war and the increasing efficiency of their organization. Particular attention is paid to the polyglot character of Norman forces, and the growing sophistication of their tactics, from cavalry raids to combined-arms warfare and siege craft.The dominant role played by a succession of Norman leaders from the Hauteville family is a key theme of the narrative - a line of ambitious and ruthless rulers that ran from Robert Guiscard and Bohemond to Tancred and King Roger II of Sicily.
Paul Brown's account of the Norman conquests in the Mediterranean is based on the most recent scholarship in the field. It challenges some of the common assumptions about the equipment, organization and fighting methods of the Norman armies and the men who fought in them.
The reissue of Joseph and Frances Gies's classic bestseller on life in medieval villages. This new reissue of Life in a Medieval Village, by respected historians Joseph and Frances Gies, paints a lively, convincing portrait of rural people at work and at play in the Middle Ages. Focusing on the village of Elton, in the English East Midlands, the Gieses detail the agricultural advances that made communal living possible, explain what domestic life was like for serf and lord alike, and describe the central role of the church in maintaining social harmony. Though the main focus is on Elton, c. 1300, the Gieses supply enlightening historical context on the origin, development, and decline of the European village, itself an invention of the Middle Ages. Meticulously researched, Life in a Medieval Village is a remarkable account that illustrates the captivating world of the Middle Ages and demonstrates what it was like to live during a fascinating-and often misunderstood-era.
Crecy, the Black Prince's most famous victory, was the first of two major victories during the first part of the Hundred Years War. This was followed ten years later by his second great success at the Battle of Poitiers. The subsequent Treaty of Bretigny established the rights of the King of England to hold his domains in France without paying homage to the King of France. In this hugely-acclaimed military history Colonel Burne re-establishes the reputation of Edward III as a grand master of strategy, whose personal hand lay behind the success of Crecy. He convincingly demonstrates that much of the credit for Crecy and Poitiers should be given to Edward and less to his son, the Black Prince, than is traditionally the case. With his vigorous and exciting style, Colonel Burne has chronicled for the general reader as well as for the military enthusiast, one of the most exceptional wars in which England has ever been engaged. This book firmly restores the Crecy campaign to its rightful place near the pinnacle of British military history.
The Roman war machine comprised land and naval forces. Although the former has been studied extensively, less has been written and understood about the naval forces of the Roman Empire. Britain's navy, known as Classis Britannica until the mid-third century, was a strong fighting force in its own right. Its vessel types, personnel, tactics, roles and technology have never been studied in depth. Here in Sea Eagles of Empire Simon Elliott explores the story of this famed naval force, through the reigns of several Roman emperors, discussing the important role it played in military campaigns all across Europe and in policing the waters of the Roman Empire in Britain.
Born in the province of Leptis Magna in Africa Septimius Severus was Roman Emperor from 193 to 211. Severus seized power after the death of Emperor Pertinax in 193 during the Year of the Five Emperors. Once he had reaffirmed his rule over the Western Provinces, Severus waged a brief war in the East against the Parthian Empire, sacking their capital Ctesiphon in 197 and expanding the eastern frontier to the Tigris. Late in his reign he travelled to Britain, strengthening Hadrian's Wall and and re-occupying the Antonine Wall. In 208 he began the conquest of Caledonia (modern Scotland) but his ambitions were cut short when he fell fatally ill in late 210. With the succession of his sons, Severus founded the Severan Dynasty, the last dynasty of the Empire before the Crisis of the Third Century.
A Place at the Altar illuminates a previously underappreciated dimension of religion in ancient Rome: the role of priestesses in civic cult. Demonstrating that priestesses had a central place in public rituals and institutions, Meghan DiLuzio emphasizes the complex, gender-inclusive nature of Roman priesthood. In ancient Rome, priestly service was a cooperative endeavor, requiring men and women, husbands and wives, and elite Romans and slaves to work together to manage the community's relationship with its gods. Like their male colleagues, priestesses offered sacrifices on behalf of the Roman people, and prayed for the community's well-being. As they carried out their ritual obligations, they were assisted by female cult personnel, many of them slave women. DiLuzio explores the central role of the Vestal Virgins and shows that they occupied just one type of priestly office open to women. Some priestesses, including the flaminica Dialis, the regina sacrorum, and the wives of the curial priests, served as part of priestly couples. Others, such as the priestesses of Ceres and Fortuna Muliebris, were largely autonomous. A Place at the Altar offers a fresh understanding of how the women of ancient Rome played a leading role in public cult.
This volume is a collection of studies which presents new analyses of the nature and scale of Roman agriculture in the Mediterranean world from c. 100 BC to AD 350. It provides a clear understanding of the fundamental features of Roman agricultural production through studying the documentary and archaeological evidence for the modes of land exploitation and the organisation, development of, and investment in this sector of the Roman economy. Moving substantially beyond the simple assumption that agriculture was the dominant sector of the ancient economy, the volume explores what was special and distinctive about it, especially with a view of its development and integration during a period of expansion and prosperity across the empire. The papers exemplify a range of possible approaches to studying and, within limits, quantifying aspects of Roman agricultural production, marshalling a large quantity of evidence, chiefly archaeological and papyrological, to address important questions of the organisation and performance of this sector in the Roman world.
In this volume, Philip Kay examines economic change in Rome and Italy between the Second Punic War and the middle of the first century BC. He argues that increased inflows of bullion, in particular silver, combined with an expansion of the availability of credit to produce significant growth in monetary liquidity. This, in turn, stimulated market developments, such as investment farming, trade, construction, and manufacturing, and radically changed the composition and scale of the Roman economy. Using a wide range of evidence and scholarly investigation, Kay demonstrates how Rome, in the second and first centuries BC, became a coherent economic entity experiencing real per capita economic growth. Without an understanding of this economic revolution, the contemporaneous political and cultural changes in Roman society cannot be fully comprehended or explained.
Theater, spectacle, and performance played significant roles in the political and social structure of the Roman Empire, which was diverse in population and language. A wide and varied range of entertainment was available to a Roman audience: the traditional festivals with their athletic contests and dramatic performances, pantomime and mime, the chariot races of the circus, and the gladiatorial shows and wild beast hunts of the arena.
In Theater and Spectacle in the Art of the Roman Empire, which is richly illustrated in color throughout, Katherine M. D. Dunbabin emphasizes the visual evidence for these events. Images of spectacle appear in a wide range of artistic media, from the mosaics and paintings that decorated wealthy private houses to the sculpture of tomb monuments, and from luxury objects such as silver tableware to more humble ceramic lamps and pottery vessels. Dunbabin places the information derived from this visual material into the wider context provided by the written sources, both literary and epigraphic. This allows us to understand the functions that these images served in the social rituals of public and domestic life.
By explicating both the social and cultural role of the spectacles themselves and the nature of their representation in art, Dunbabin provides a comprehensive portrait of the popular culture of the period.
The Oxford Handbook of Modern African History represents an invaluable tool for historians and others in the field of African studies. This collection of essays, produced by some of the finest scholars currently working in the field, provides the latest insights into, and interpretations of, the history of Africa - a continent with a rich and complex past. An understanding of this past is essential to gain perspective on Africa's current challenges, and this accessible and comprehensive volume will allow readers to explore various aspects - political, economic, social, and cultural - of the continent's history over the last two hundred years. Since African history first emerged as a serious academic endeavour in the 1950s and 1960s, it has undergone numerous shifts in terms of emphasis and approach, changes brought about by political and economic exigencies and by ideological debates. This multi-faceted Handbook is essential reading for anyone with an interest in those debates, and in Africa and its peoples. While the focus is determinedly historical, anthropology, geography, literary criticism, political science and sociology are all employed in this ground-breaking study of Africa's past.
Graham Hancock's multi-million bestseller Fingerprints of the Gods remains an astonishing, deeply controversial, wide-ranging investigation of the mysteries of our past and the evidence for Earth's lost civilization. Twenty years on, Hancock returns with the sequel to his seminal work filled with completely new, scientific and archaeological evidence, which has only recently come to light. This paperback edition is updated with a new chapter revealing more fascinating revelations.
Near the end of the last Ice Age 12,800 years ago, a giant comet that had entered the solar system from deep space thousands of years earlier, broke into multiple fragments. Some of these struck the Earth causing a global cataclysm on a scale unseen since the extinction of the dinosaurs. At least eight of the fragments hit the North American ice cap, while further fragments hit the northern European ice cap. The impacts, from comet fragments a mile wide approaching at more than 60,000 miles an hour, generated huge amounts of heat which instantly liquidized millions of square kilometers of ice, destabilizing the Earth's crust and causing the global Deluge that is remembered in myths all around the world.
A second series of impacts, equally devastating, causing further cataclysmic flooding, occurred 11,600 years ago, the exact date that Plato gives for the destruction and submergence of Atlantis.
The evidence revealed in this book shows beyond reasonable doubt that an advanced civilization that flourished during the Ice Age was destroyed in the global cataclysms between 12,800 and 11,600 years ago.
But there were survivors - known to later cultures by names such as 'the Sages', 'the Magicians', 'the Shining Ones', and 'the Mystery Teachers of Heaven'. They travelled the world in their great ships doing all in their power to keep the spark of civilization burning. They settled at key locations - Gobekli Tepe in Turkey, Baalbek in the Lebanon, Giza in Egypt, ancient Sumer, Mexico, Peru and across the Pacific where a huge pyramid has recently been discovered in Indonesia. Everywhere they went these 'Magicians of the Gods' brought with them the memory of a time when mankind had fallen out of harmony with the universe and paid a heavy price.
A memory and a warning to the future... For the comet that wrought such destruction between 12,800 and 11,600 years may not be done with us yet. Astronomers believe that a 20-mile wide 'dark' fragment of the original giant comet remains hidden within its debris stream and threatens the Earth. An astronomical message encoded at Gobekli Tepe, and in the Sphinx and the pyramids of Egypt,warns that the 'Great Return' will occur in our time...
A bullet misses its target in Sarajevo, a would-be Austrian painter gets into the Viennese academy, Lord Halifax becomes British prime minister in 1940: seemingly minor twists of fate on which world-shaking events might have hinged. Alternative history has long been the stuff of parlour games, war-gaming and science fiction, but over the past few decades it has become a popular stomping ground for serious historians. Richard J. Evans now turns a critical, slightly jaundiced eye on the subject. Altered Pasts examines the intellectual fallout from historical counterfactuals. Most importantly, Evans takes counterfactual history seriously, looking at the insights, pitfalls and intellectual implications of changing one thread in the weave of history.
For the British Empire it was a military disaster, but for Imperial Japan the conquest of Malaya was one of the pivotal campaigns of World War II. Giving birth to the myth of the Imperial Japanese Army's invincibility, the victory left both Burma and India open to invasion. Although heavily outnumbered, the Japanese Army fought fiercely to overcome the inept and shambolic defence offered by the British and Commonwealth forces. Detailed analysis of the conflict, combined with a heavy focus on the significance of the aerial campaign, help tell the fascinating story of the Japanese victory, from the initial landings in Thailand and Malaya through to the destruction of the Royal Navy's Force Z and the final fall of Singapore itself.
The continuing story of Australia's domestic intelligence organisation during the turbulent years from the end of the Menzies era to the downfall of the Whitlam government.
By 1963, Robert Menzies had been prime minister for thirteen years, Australia had its first troops in Vietnam, and change was in the air. There would soon be street protests over women's rights, Aboriginal land rights and the Vietnam War, and unprecedented student activism. With the Cold War lingering, ASIO was concerned that protests were being orchestrated to foment revolution.
The Protest Years tells the inside story of Australia's domestic intelligence organisation from the last of the Menzies years to the dismissal of the Whitlam government. With unrestricted access to ASIO's internal files, and extensive interviews with insiders, for the first time the circumstances surrounding the alleged role of ASIO in the demise of the Whitlam Government are revealed, and the question of the CIA's involvement in Australia is explored. The extraordinary background to the raid on ASIO headquarters in Melbourne by Attorney-General Lionel Murphy, and Australia's efforts at countering Soviet bloc espionage, as well as the sensitive intelligence activities in South Vietnam, are exposed.
The Protest Years is the second of three volumes of The Official History of ASIO.
Late one afternoon in June 1939, VI Lenin's former comrade and Justice Minister, Dr Isaac Nachman Steinberg, gazed at the alien landscape of the Kimberley region of Western Australia stretching out before him. A ridge of jagged and flattened hills of ancient sandstone, formed hundreds of millions of years ago, glowed purple as the sun went down. The pandanus palms stood limp and motionless in the evening's warm stillness, and for that moment the whole world seemed utterly deserted.
The silence and fading light of the Australian bush seemed a million miles away from the gangs of Nazi storm troopers marching through the streets of German cities, singing of knives spilling Jewish blood, and from the pavements littered with shattered glass of Jewish homes?, stores and synagogues.
Dr Steinberg's reverie was interrupted by the raucous din of cockatoos. Turning to the noise, he glimpsed a kangaroo bounding through the tall grass and disappearing into an ocean of savannah.
Slowly, the ex-revolutionary crouched and picked up a clump of brown soil. He crumbled it between his fingers. It felt like the chernoziom, the rich black earth so prized by the Russian peasants he had known many years before. He turned to his guides standing by the car on the rough bush track and smiled. At last, he had arrived. This timeless territory was the place for a homeland.
This is the tale of three Australian bomber squadrons at war, flying with RAF Bomber Command in the early part of Britain's bombing offensive upon Nazi Germany, fromAugust1941toSeptember1942. This campaign saw the only major and ongoing Australian contribution to the wara gainst Hitler's Germany. It was proportionally the bloodiest in Australian and British military history, with the survival rate among the aircrews dropping by Autumn 1942 to about 25 percent.
Australia’s countryside, deeply and richly scarred by the human presence, shows the marks of sweat and toil, of lives and generations, of triumphs and failures and of enterprise often slowly decaying with time.
These beautiful images captured by Andrew Chapman in The Farm are glimpses of the past amidst the reality of the present. They are an evocative record — by one of Australia’s most acclaimed photographers — of an ever-changing landscape.
A celebration of the Spit Amateur Swimming Club andhow it's had an enormous impact, not just on the socialand cultural community of Sydney's lower North Shore,but internationally. Swimming with The Spit celebrates an illustriousswimming club located on one of the most beautifulspots on Sydney Harbour, as well as the joy of swimming.This gorgeous book encourages readers and swimmers,young and old, to think about their ambles down to thebeach, their invigorating morning swims and refreshingafternoon dips on sultry Sydney-summer days, withan eye on their history. Historians Tanya Evans, IainMcCalman, Ian Hoskins, Kate Fullagar, Leigh Boucherand Nancy Cushing, as well as volunteer researchers,local students and current Spit Club members, hopeto persuade readers to don their cossies, dive into theocean and involve themselves with dynamic communityorganisations such as the Spit Club by celebrating itscentenary.
London, 1888: Jack the Ripper stalks the streets of Whitechapel; national strikes and social unrest threaten the status quo; a grave economic crisis is spreading across the Atlantic . . . Yet Her Majesty's government is preoccupied with "a mere book" - or rather, a series of books: new translations of the Rougon-Macquart saga by French literary giant mile Zola.
In his time, Zola made his British contemporaries look positively pastoral; much of his work is considered shocking and transgressive even now. But it was his English publisher who bore the brunt of the Victorians' moral outrage at Zola's "realistic" depictions of striking miners, society courtesans and priapic, feuding farmers.
Seventy years before LADY CHATTERLEY'S LOVER broke the back of British censorship, Henry Vizetelly's commitment to publishing Zola, and to the nascent principle of free speech, not only landed him in the dock and thereafter in prison, but brought to ruin to the publishing house he had founded. Meanwhile, Zola was going from strength to strength, establishing his reputation as a literary legend and falling in love with a woman half his age.
This lively, humorous and ultimately tragic tale is an exploration of the consequences of translation and censorship which remains relevant today for readers, publishers and authors everywhere.
England's cathedrals are the nation's glory. They tower over its landscape, outranking palaces, castles and mansions. They attract roughly half the nation's population each year. For a millennium they have been objects of pilgrimage for those seeking faith, consolation and beauty. Still at the start of the twenty-first century, they remain unequalled in their size and splendour. More than any other English institution, cathedrals reflect the vicissitudes of history and should be treasured as such. They are custodians of culture and of the rituals of civic life. They offer welfare and relieve suffering. They uplift spirits with their beauty. In a real sense they are still what they were when first built a millennium ago, a glimpse of the sublime. Gloriously illustrated throughout, England's Cathedrals not only offers us a companion to England's Thousand Best Churches, it takes us on an enthralling tour of the nation and its history, through some of our most astonishing buildings.
We all know that some of the greatest inventions came from the Victorian age, the successors of which are still with us today. But this book is not entirely about those. It's more about some of the weird and wonderful inventions, ideas and projects - some successful, others less so - that have largely been forgotten. Where well-known inventions or design concepts are included, it is from a perspective not previously appreciated, with details of the ingenious technology and thinking that led to their introduction and success. Here you can read how Victorian innovators were responsible for: the world's largest glass structure; an electric railway with lines under the sea and a carriage on stilts 20 feet above the waves; a monster globe that visitors could enter to see the world's land masses, seas, mountains and valleys modelled on the interior; cameras disguised as bowler hats and many other everyday objects; the London Underground as a steam railway; safety coffins designed to prevent premature burial; unusual medical uses for electricity; the first traffic lights, which exploded a month after their erection in Westminster; and the birth and rapid rise to popularity of the cinema ...as well as many other ingenious inventions.
This seminal period of British history is a far-off world in which poverty, violence and superstition went hand-in-hand with opulence, religious virtue and a thriving cultural landscape, at once familiar and alien to the modern reader. John Matusiak sets out to shed new light on the lives and times of the Tudors by exploring the objects they left behind. Among them, a silver-gilt board badge discarded at Bosworth Field when Henry VII won the English crown; a signet ring that may have belonged to Shakespeare; the infamous Halifax gibbet, on which some 100 people were executed; scientific advancements such as a prosthetic arm and the first flushing toilet; and curiosities including a ladies' sun mask, 'Prince Arthur's hutch' and the Danny jewel, which was believed to be made from the horn of a unicorn. The whole vivid panorama of Tudor life is laid bare in this thought-provoking and frequently myth-shattering narrative, which is firmly founded upon contemporary accounts and the most up-to-date results of modern scholarship. Everything you wanted to know about the Merrie England of the Tudors and some things you probably did not. If the Tudors seem far removed, they are also curiously modern. They had spectacles and metal prosthetic arms, while a fuming pot was but a prototype Air Wick. Matusiak's mini essays accompanying the photographs are perfectly sculpted and the book is beautiful to hold. - Charlotte Heathcote, The Sunday Express
In May 1940 Nazi Germany was master of continental Europe, the only European power still standing was Great Britain - and the all-conquering German armed forces stood poised to cross the Channel. Following the destruction of the RAF fighter forces, the sweeping of the Channel of mines, and the wearing down of the Royal Naval defenders, two German army groups were set to storm the beaches of southern England. Despite near-constant British fears from August to October, the invasion never took place after first being postponed to spring 1941 before finally being abandoned entirely. Robert Forcyzk, author of Where the Iron Crosses Grow, looks beyond the traditional British account of Operation Sea Lion, complete with plucky Home Guards and courageous Spitfire pilots, at the real scale of German ambition, plans and capabilities. He examines, in depth, how Operation Sea Lion fitted in with German air-sea actions around the British Isles as he shows exactly what stopped Hitler from invading Britain.
Covering the development of the atomic bomb during the Second World War, the origins and early course of the Cold War, and the advent of the hydrogen bomb in the early 1950s, Churchill and the Bomb in War and Cold War explores a still neglected aspect of Winston Churchill's career - his relationship with and thinking on nuclear weapons. Kevin Ruane shows how Churchill went from regarding the bomb as a weapon of war in the struggle with Nazi Germany to viewing it as a weapon of communist containment (and even punishment) in the early Cold War before, in the 1950s, advocating and arguably pioneering what would become known as mutually assured destruction as the key to preventing the Cold War flaring into a calamitous nuclear war. While other studies of Churchill have touched on his evolving views on nuclear weapons, few historians have given this hugely important issue the kind of dedicated and sustained treatment it deserves. In Churchill and the Bomb in War and Cold War, however, Kevin Ruane has undertaken extensive primary research in Britain, the United States and Europe, and accessed a wide array of secondary literature, in producing an immensely readable yet detailed, insightful and provocative account of Churchill's nuclear hopes and fears.
The Afghan war will be remembered for its politics more than its combat. There were few, if any, major battles. The longest war in American history has left 1,800 U.S. troops dead, fewer than half the number killed in Iraq. The violence is mostly confined to the farmlands, deserts, and mountains, playing out in small ambushes, hit-and-run attacks, and assassinations. The United States came to Afghanistan on a simple mission: to avenge the September 11 attacks and drive the Taliban from power. This took less than two months. The story of the next decade is about how the ensuing fight for power and money - the power and money supplied to one of the poorest nations on earth in ever-greater amounts - left the region even more dangerous than before the first troops arrived. At the centre of this story is the Karzai family. The president and his brothers began the war as symbols of a new Afghanistan - moderate, educated, fluent with East and West - the antithesis of the brutish and backwards Taliban regime. Now, with the war in shambles, they are in open conflict with each other and their Western allies. In their experience one can find a war's worth of mistakes, squandered hopes, and wasted chances. Nothing encapsulates the essence of the war's trajectory - and the descent from optimism to despair, friends to enemies - as neatly as the story of the Karzai family itself.
For perhaps the first time, the author has attempted a holistic account of the monarchy in modern Greece. The reader, on the basis of information about the political behaviour of the Greek and his relationship with authority in every form, is able to understand why this specific type of constitution was chosen. The progress of the monarchy is explored in parallel with the quest for popular legitimization and the constitutional dimension of the question, including the contradictions in the constitutional legislation and the fragility of a democratic constitutional monarchy. Three figures of the Dynasty are discussed and, in the cases of Constantine the First and Frederika, an attempt is made to separate myth from reality. The philanthropic attitude of members of the two dynasties is discussed together with the deep-rooted socio-political dimension of the monarchy. Finally, the author examines the causes of the unravelling of the strong, but uneasy bond between people and monarchy.
Many see China's rise as a threat to US leadership in Asia and beyond. Thomas J. Christensen argues instead that the real challenge lies in dissuading China from regional aggression while eliciting its global cooperation. Drawing on decades of scholarship and experience as a senior diplomat, Christensen offers a deep perspective on China's military and economic capacity. Assessing China's political outlook and strategic goals, Christensen shows how nationalism and the threat of domestic instability influence the party's decisions about regional and global affairs. Articulating a balanced strategic approach along with perceptive historical analysis, Christensen describes how we might shape China's choices in the coming decades so that it contributes more to the international system from which it benefits so much.
When Mao Zedong proclaimed The People's Republic of China in 1949, China was a poor and wrecked society after years of continuous wars. For centuries, in fact, China had been seen as a sort of plunder-zone to be invaded, and then a backwater until the late 1980s, when domestic policy brought about monumental changes. The result was that in the past quarter-century China has grown to be the second largest economy in the world, and its military has grown proportionately.
Successive decades of economic growth have transformed China-in addition to the weapons revolution during the computer age-so that by now the People's Liberation Army (PLA) has become a modern fighting force. No longer having to rely on massed infantry attacks, it now features a formidable arsenal including nuclear submarines, ICBMs, stealth fighters, and modern battle tanks. Perhaps ominously for other maritime powers, the Chinese have also focused on beyond-the-horizon missile technology, as well as anti-aircraft systems, and have also explored the possibilities of cyber-warfare. What is today's PLA really like? What are its traditions and histories, and how is it armed and equipped? How does it recruit and train?
This book describes some of the lesser known battles and wars the Chinese have undertaken, and the development of their key weapons systems. The United States, having opened the door to drone warfare, have had an attentive audience for such technologies in Beijing. The last chapter provides thoughts on how the Chinese view matters of security. It is not yet known whether foreign powers can still enforce their territorial wills on China, but future attempts will meet an increased challenge. This book will be of interest not only to general readers but to policy-makers and militaries in the West, who may not yet realize that a new China has replaced the old.
Forty years after his death, Mao remains a totemic, if divisive, figure in contemporary China. Though many continue to revere him and he retains an immense symbolic importance within China's national mythology, the rise of a capitalist economy has seen the ruling class become increasingly ambivalent towards him. And while he continues to be a highly visible and contentious presence in Chinese public life, Mao's enduring influence has been little understood in the West. In China and the New Maoists, Kerry Brown and Simone van Nieuwenhuizen looks at the increasingly vocal elements who claim to be the true ideological heirs to Mao, ranging from academics to cyberactivists, as well as at the state's efforts to draw on Mao's image as a source of legitimacy. A fascinating portrait of a country undergoing dramatic upheavals while still struggling to come to terms with its past.
The Holocaust differs from other genocides in recent history for one main reason: there is no other example in which a minority was annihilated systematically and as completely as possible on the orders of a head of state and through the apparatus of government. To reconstruct Hitler's central role in the Final Solution represents a particular challenge. Hitler treated the murder of the Jews as a matter of the utmost secrecy and was careful wherever possible not to leave behind any written orders. Wherever his instructions on this matter are recorded he has used codified language. He kept away from the implementation of the orders and feigned ignorance, even to his closest friends and colleagues. Under these conditions, the surviving source material can only be described as fragmentary. The Unwritten Order aims to offer documentary proof of Hitler's central role in the murder of the European Jews. In order to achieve this aim, various documents and fragments of documents have been pieced together and the codified language of the dictator deciphered.
The Anvil of War details the German strategies and tactics employed by the commanders on the cataclysmic Russian Front in the Second World War. Monographs by two officers who served in Russia - Military Improvisations during the Russian Campaign and German Defense Tactics against Russian Breakthrough by General Erhard Rauss, and Operations of Encircled Forces by Generalleutnant Oldwig von Natzmer - show how the Germans adapted techniques to cope with their enemy's great numerical superiority, and managed to delay and sometimes drive back the 'steamroller' Russian forces during the German retreat in 1945. These reports were written as part of a U.S. Army program instigated after the war by Colonel S.L.A. Marshall of the Army Historical Division, who was convinced that no record of the war could be complete without the input of German commanding officers and their main staff officers. The significance of the material detailing the Germans' vast experience of fighting the Soviets was emphasised with the fear of a Russian attack during the Cold War.
Jagging across north-western Europe like an ugly scar, the Hindenburg Line was Germany's most formidable line of defence in World War I. Its fearsome reputation was matched only by its cunning design, with deep zigzagging trenches, concrete fieldworks, barbed wire and devilish booby traps forming an intimidating barrier for any attacking army. Through meticulous research, this volume explores each of the major portions of the Hindenburg Line, paying particular attention to three examples of Allied operations against it towards the end of the war: the critical flanking of the Drocourt-Qeant Switch; the daring but costly rupture of the line of the St Quentin Canal; and the bloody battles of the Meuse-Argonne. Specially commissioned artwork and historical photographs perfectly complement the analysis provided by the authors as they trace the life of the Hindenburg Line from its seemingly invulnerable early years through to the audacious tactics used by the Allies to achieve a bitter victory in 1918.
The Irish Revolution - the war between the British authorities and the newly-formed IRA - was the first successful revolt anywhere against the British Empire. This is a vividly-written, compelling narrative placing events in Ireland in the wider context of a world in turmoil after the ending of a global war: one that saw the collapse of empires and the rise of fascist Italy and communist Russia. Walsh shows how developments in Europe and America had a profound effect on Ireland, influencing the attitudes and expectations of combatants and civilians. Walsh also brings to life what Irish people who were not fully involved in the fighting were doing - the plays they went to, the exciting films they watched in the new cinemas, the books they read and the work they did. The freedom from Britain that most of them wanted was, when it came, a bitter disappointment to a generation aware of the promise of modernity.
This authoritative and handsomely illustrated book is aimed at the general reader who wants to know about the mysterious people who inhabited Scotland from the Bronze Age onwards. They created wonderful works of art in gold and silver and their brochs and hillforts are scattered over the Scottish landscape. Many modern-day Scots are descended from them. Using the results of modern archaeology and historical sources, Ian Armit answers the key questions about who the Celts were, where they came from, their relationship with other Celtic tribes throughout Europe, their customs and beliefs and their daily life. It is a fascinating story told with flair and clarity by one of Britain's leading experts on the Celts.
Figures in a Famine Landscape is a ground-breaking study that follows a number of individuals involved in different public capacities in a particularly afflicted district of Ireland during the Great Famine. The thinking and actions of each had a major effect on the existences - and the survival - of scores of thousands of the destitute poor in Ireland at a crucial point in the country's history. Among these figures are an outspoken newspaper editor; two clergymen (one Catholic, one Protestant); two highly qualified and busy physicians; two landlords and an exterminating agent; a Board of Works official and a Poor Law inspector. Taking an exhaustive approach to source material that includes private diaries, letters, official reports and correspondence, police files, parliamentary papers and a wealth of newspapers, in this enthralling study the author builds up an in-depth, almost microscopic picture of each individual, providing a unique and very human lens through which to view the Great Famine.
The history of Tokyo is as eventful as it is long. A concise yet detailed overview of this fascinating, centuries-old city, Tokyo: A Biography is a perfect companion volume for history buffs or Tokyo-bound travelers looking to learn more about their destination. In a whirlwind journey through Tokyo's past from its earliest beginnings up to the present day, this Japanese history book demonstrates how the city's response to everything from natural disasters to regime change has been to reinvent itself time and again. A calamitous fire results in a massive expansion of the city's territory. A debate over the Samurai code creates far-reaching social change. A malleable boy becomes the figurehead for powerful forces who change an ancient feudal society into a modern industrialised power within a generation. Utter destruction wipes the slate clean again so Tokyoites may start all over. And so it goes. Tokyo's story is riveting, and by the end of Tokyo: A Biography, readers see a city almost unrivalled in its uniqueness, a place that despite its often tragic history still shimmers as it prepares to face the future.
In To Be Israeli, Yair Lapid offers his unique perspective on his equally unique homeland: its war-torn but inspiring history, prickly but warmhearted people, imperfect but spirited democracy. In a collection of insightful, poignant, and often humorous essays, Lapid takes on the topics that have shaped his country: the conflict with the Palestinians, anti-Semitism, terrorism, and the legacy of the Holocaust. A popular newspaper columnist and TV host before he entered politics, Lapid for the first time shares with American readers the tough-minded but hopeful vision that won over so many voters, bringing a calm, levelheaded voice to topics usually dominated by vitriol and denunciation. A fervent secularist who attends synagogue, Lapid addresses hot-button issues such as the role of religion in Israeli society. A devoted father with a passion for history, Lapid also reflects on the personal and family milestones that reflect Israel's differences from other countries, such as watching his oldest son join the army and seeing four generations attend the same Passover seder. Lapid assesses his country's greatest accomplishments and most horrific failures, its miraculous survival and the gathering threats it faces, the burdens of the past and reasons to think a bright future lies ahead.
An essential resource, newly revised and updated In print for nearly half a century, and now in its eighth edition, The Israel-Arab Reader is an authoritative guide to over a century of conflict in the Middle East. It covers the full spectrum of a violent and checkered history the origins of Zionism and Arab nationalism, the struggles surrounding Israel s independence in 1948, the Six-Day War and other wars and hostilities over the decades, and the long diplomatic process and many peace initiatives. Arranged chronologically and without bias by two veteran historians of the Middle East, this comprehensive reference brings together speeches, letters, articles, and reports involving all the major interests in the area. The eighth edition features a new introduction as well as a large new section more than 40 pages recounting developments over the last decade, including the intra-Palestinian factional strife between Fatah and Hamas, the roles played by Egypt and Iran in the region, enduring arguments over a two-state solution and the right of return for Palestinian refugees, and issues of human rights abuse and terrorism.
How did Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood win power so quickly after the dramatic "Arab Spring" uprising that ended President Hosni Mubarak's thirty-year reign in February 2011? And why did the Brotherhood fall from power even more quickly, culminating with the popular "rebellion" and military coup that toppled Egypt's first elected president, Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi, in July 2013?
In Arab Fall, Eric Trager examines the Brotherhood's decision making throughout this critical period, explaining its reasons for joining the 2011 uprising, running for a majority of the seats in the 2011-2012 parliamentary elections, and nominating a presidential candidate despite its initial promise not to do so. Based on extensive research in Egypt and interviews with dozens of Brotherhood leaders and cadres including Morsi, Trager argues that the very organizational characteristics that helped the Brotherhood win power also contributed to its rapid downfall. The Brotherhood's intensive process for recruiting members and its rigid nationwide command-chain meant that it possessed unparalleled mobilizing capabilities for winning the first post-Mubarak parliamentary and presidential elections.
Yet the Brotherhood's hierarchical organizational culture, in which dissenters are banished and critics are viewed as enemies of Islam, bred exclusivism. This alienated many Egyptians, including many within Egypt's state institutions. The Brotherhood's insularity also prevented its leaders from recognizing how quickly the country was slipping from their grasp, leaving hundreds of thousands of Muslim Brothers entirely unprepared for the brutal crackdown that followed Morsi's overthrow. Trager concludes with an assessment of the current state of Egyptian politics and examines the Brotherhood's prospects for reemerging.
For more than 30 years the Nile river gunboat was an indispensable tool of empire, policing the great river and acting as floating symbols of British imperial power. They participated in every significant colonial campaign in the region, from the British invasion of Egypt in 1882 to the Battle of Omdurman in 1898, when Britain finally won control of the Sudan. After that, the gunboats helped maintain British control over both Egypt and the Sudan, and played a key role in safeguarding British interests around the headwaters of the Nile - a region hotly contested by several European powers. Featuring specially commissioned artwork, this comprehensive volume offers a detailed analysis of the Nile river gunboats' entire career, from policing British colonial interests along the great river to defending Egypt against the Ottoman Turks in World War I.
Starting with the basic question what is this place? , award-winning journalist and novelist Ece Temelkuran guides us through her beloved country . In challenging the authoritarian AKP government - for which she lost her job as a journalist - Temelkuran draws strength and wisdom from people, places and artistic expression. The result is a beautifully rendered account of the struggles, hopes and tragedies which make Turkey what it is today. Lamenting the commercialisation and authoritarianism which increasingly characterises Turkish society, Temelkuran sees hope in the Gezi Park protests of 2013, the electoral breakthrough of the progressive HDP party in 2015 and in the simple kindness of ordinary people. Much more than either straightforward history or memoir, Turkey: the Insane the Melancholy is like sitting with a friendly stranger who, over raki or coffee, reveals the secrets of this rich and complex country - the historic bridge between east and west.
The history of Ancient Babylonia in ancient Mesopatamia is epic. After playing host to three great empires, the Hammurabic and Kassite empires, and the Neo-Babylonian Empire ruled by Nebuchadnezzar, it was conquered by the Persians. Entered triumphantly by Alexander the Great, it later provided the setting for the Conquerer's deathbed. Squabbled over by his heirs, Babylonia was subsequently dominated by the Parthian and Roman empires. In this Very Short Introduction, Trevor Bryce takes us on a journey of more than 2,000 years across the history and civilization of ancient Babylonia, from the emergence of its chief city, Babylon, as a modest village on the Euphrates in the 3rd millennium BC through successive phases of triumph, decline, and resurgence until its royal capital faded into obscurity in the Roman imperial era. Exploring key historical events as well as the day-to-day life of an ancient Babylonian, Bryce provides a comprehensive guide to one of history's most profound civilizations. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Originally published in 1975, The Machiavellian Moment remains a landmark of historical and political thought. Celebrated historian J.G.A. Pocock looks at the consequences for modern historical and social consciousness arising from the ideal of the classical republic revived by Machiavelli and other thinkers of Renaissance Italy. Pocock shows that Machiavelli's prime emphasis was on the moment in which the republic confronts the problem of its own instability in time, which Pocock calls the Machiavellian moment. After examining this problem in the works of Machiavelli, Guicciardini, and Giannotti, Pocock turns to the revival of republican ideology in Puritan England and in Revolutionary and Federalist America. He argues that the American Revolution can be considered the last great act of civic humanism of the Renaissance and he relates the origins of modern historicism to the clash between civic, Christian, and commercial values in eighteenth-century thought. This Princeton Classics edition of The Machiavellian Moment features a new introduction by Richard Whatmore.
Bob Woodward exposes one of the final pieces of the Richard Nixon puzzle in his new book The Last of the President's Men. Woodward reveals the untold story of Alexander Butterfield, the Nixon aide who disclosed the secret White House taping system that changed history and led to Nixon's resignation. In 46 hours of interviews with Butterfield, supported by thousands of documents, many of them original and not in the presidential archives and libraries, Woodward has uncovered new dimensions of Nixon's secrets, obsessions and deceptions. Butterfield provides the intimate details of what it was like working and living just feet from the most powerful man in the world as he sought to navigate the obligations to his president and the truth of Nixon's obsessions and deceptions. The Last of the President's Mencould not be more timely and relevant as voters question how much do we know about those who are now seeking the presidency in 2016-what really drives them, how do they really make decisions, who do they surround themselves with, and what are their true political and personal values?
With Barack Obama's historic election in 2008, pundits proclaimed the Republicans as dead as the Whigs of yesteryear. Yet even as Democrats swooned, a small cadre of Republican operatives began plotting their comeback with a simple yet ingenious plan. These men had devised a way to take a tradition of dirty tricks-known to political insiders as ratf**king -to an unprecedented level. Flooding state races with a gold rush of dark money, the Republicans reshaped state legislatures where the power to redistrict is held. Reconstructing this previously untold story, David Daley examines the far-reaching effects of this programme, which has radically altered America's electoral map and created a firewall in the House. Ratf**ked pulls back the curtain on one of the greatest heists in American political history.
No part of the country was more contested during the American Revolution than New York City, the Hudson River, and the surrounding counties. Political and military leaders on both sides viewed the Hudson River Valley as the American jugular, which, if cut, would quickly bleed the rebellion to death. So in 1776, King George III sent the largest amphibious force ever assembled to seize Manhattan and use it as a base from which to push up the Hudson River Valley for a grand rendezvous at Albany with an impressive army driving down from Canada.
George Washington and every other patriot leader shared the king's fixation with the Hudson. Generations of American and British historians have held the same view. In fact, one of the few things that scholars have agreed upon is that the British strategy, though disastrously executed, should have been swift and effective. Until now, no one has argued that this plan of action was lunacy from the beginning. Revolution on the Hudson makes the bold new argument that Britain's attempt to cut off New England never would have worked, and that doggedly pursuing dominance of the Hudson ultimately cost the crown her colonies.
It unpacks intricate military maneuvers on land and sea, introduces the personalities presiding over each side's strategy, and reinterprets the vagaries of colonial politics to offer a thrilling response to one of our most vexing historical questions: How could a fledgling nation have defeated the most powerful war machine of the era?
George C. Daughan-winner of the prestigious Samuel Eliot Morrison Award for Naval Literature-integrates the war's naval elements with its political, military, economic, and social dimensions to create a major new study of the American Revolution. Revolution on the Hudson offers a much clearer understanding of our founding conflict, and how it transformed a rebellion that Britain should have crushed into a war they could never win.
1944 was a year that could have stymied the Allies and cemented Hitler's waning power. Instead, it saved those democracies-but with a fateful cost. Now, in a "complex history rendered with great color and sympathy" (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), Jay Winik captures the epic images and extraordinary history as never before.
1944 witnessed a series of titanic events: FDR at the pinnacle of his wartime leadership as well as his reelection, the unprecedented D-Day invasion, the liberation of Paris, and the tumultuous conferences that finally shaped the coming peace. But millions of lives were at stake as President Roosevelt learned about Hitler's Final Solution. Just as the Allies were landing in Normandy, the Nazis were accelerating the killing of millions of European Jews. Winik shows how escalating pressures fell on an infirm Roosevelt, who faced a momentous decision. Was winning the war the best way to rescue the Jews? Or would it get in the way of defeating Hitler? In a year when even the most audacious undertakings were within the world's reach, one challenge-saving Europe's Jews-seemed to remain beyond Roosevelt's grasp.
"Compelling.This dramatic account highlights what too often has been glossed over-that as nobly as the Greatest Generation fought under FDR's command, America could well have done more to thwart Nazi aggression" (The Boston Globe). Destined to take its place as one of the great works of World War II, 1944 is the first book to retell these events with moral clarity and a moving appreciation of the extraordinary actions of many extraordinary leaders.
In American Apostles, the Bancroft Prize-winning historian Christine Leigh Heyrman chronicles the first fateful collision between American missionaries and the diverse religious cultures of the Levant. Pliny Fisk, Levi Parsons, Jonas King: though virtually unknown today, these three young New Englanders commanded attention across the United States two hundred years ago. Steeped in the biblical prophecies of evangelical Protestantism, these boys became the founding members of the Palestine mission and ventured to Ottoman Turkey, Egypt, and Syria, where they sought to expose the falsity of Muhammad's creed and to restore these bastions of Islam to true Christianity.
The missionaries thrilled Americans with tales of crossing the Sinai on camel, sailing up the Nile, and exploring Jerusalem, but their journals tell a different story, revealing that their missions did not go according to plan. Instead of converting the Middle East, the members of the Palestine mission themselves experienced spiritual challenges; some of the missionaries developed a cosmopolitan curiosity about Islam while others devised images of Muslims that would fuel the first wave of Islamophobia in the United States.
American Apostles brings to life evangelicals' first encounters with the Middle East. The mission promised Americans a more accurate understanding of Islam, but it bolstered a more militant Christianity.
Norman Mailer and William F. Buckley Jr. were towering figures who argued publicly about every major issue of the 1960s: the counterculture, Vietnam, feminism, civil rights, the Cold War. Behind the scenes, the two were close friends and trusted confidantes who lived surprisingly parallel lives. In Buckley and Mailer, Kevin M. Schultz delves into their personal archives to tell the rich story of their friendship, arguments and the tumultuous decade they did so much to shape. He delivers a fresh chronicle of the '60s and its long aftermath as well as an entertaining work of narrative history that explores these extraordinary figures' contrasting visions of America and the future.
Mark Twain coined the term the Gilded Age for this period of growth and extravagance, experienced most dramatically in New York City from the 1870s to 1910. More than half of America's millionaires lived in the city. Previously unimaginable sums of money were made and spent, while poor immigrants toiled away in tenements. Author Esther Crain writes, There was an incredible energy, a sense of greatness and destiny. Things were literally going up-skyscrapers, elevated train tracks, new neighborhoods and parks. Accompanying all of that was an equal amount of greed and lust. Crime, vice, political scandals-the Gilded Age produced an abundance of depravity. The Gilded Age in New York City covers daily life for the rich, poor, and the burgeoning middle class; the influx of immigrants which caused the city's population to quadruple in 40 years; how new-found leisure time was spent in places such as Coney Island and Central Park; crimes that shocked the city and altered the police force; the rise of social services; and the city's physical growth both skyward and outward toward the five boroughs. Through words and amazing, rarely seen images, Crain captures between covers the metamorphic story of city at the center of the world.
In May of 2005, the U.S. government finally acknowledged that the invasion of Iraq had spawned an insurgency. With that admission, training the Iraqi Forces suddenly became a strategic priority. Lt. Col. Bill Edmonds, then a Special Forces captain, was in the first group of official military advisors. He arrived in Mosul in the wake of Abu Ghraib, at the height of the insurgency, and in the midst of America's rapidly failing war strategy.
Edmonds' job was to advise an Iraqi intelligence officer-to assist and temper his interrogations-but not give orders. But he wanted to be more than a wallflower, so he immersed himself in the experience, even learning Arabic. In a makeshift basement prison, over countless nights and predawn hours, Edmonds came to empathize with Iraqi rules: do what's necessary, do what works. After all, Americans and Iraqis were dying. Edmonds wanted to make a difference. Yet the longer he submerged himself in the worst of humanity, the more conflicted and disillusioned he became, slowly losing faith in everything and everyone. In the end, he lost himself. He returned home with no visible wounds, but on the inside he was different. He tried to forget-to soldier on-but memories from war never just fade away...
In God Is Not Here, the weight of history is everywhere, but the focus is on a young man struggling to learn what is right when fighting wrong. Edmonds provides a disturbing and thought-provoking account of the morally ambiguous choices faced when living with and fighting within a foreign religion and culture, as well as the resulting psychological and spiritual impacts on a soldier. Transcending the genre of the traditional war memoir, Edmonds' eloquent recounting makes for one of the most insightful and moving books to emerge from America's long war against terrorism.
As a child, Joe Beck heard about his father's legacy: Foster Beck had once been a respected trial lawyer who defied the unspoken code of 1930s Alabama by defending a black man charged with raping a white woman. A lawyer himself, Beck became intrigued by the similarities between his father's story and Harper Lee's iconic novel. Beck reconstructs his father's role in the 1938 trial-much publicised when Harper Lee was twelve years old-in which the examining doctor testified before a hostile courtroom that there was no evidence of intercourse or violence. Nevertheless, the all-white jury voted to convict. This riveting memoir explores how race, class and the memory of the American South's defeat in the Civil War produced the trial's outcome and how these issues compare with the American literary imagination.
The Times' complete coverage of World War II is now available in a paperback edition of this unique book. Hundreds of the most riveting articles from the archives of the Times including firsthand accounts of major events and little-known anecdotes have been selected for inclusion in The New York Times: World War II. The book covers the biggest battles of the war, from the Battle of the Bulge to the Battle of Iwo Jima, as well as moving stories from the home front and profiles of noted leaders and heroes such as Winston Churchill and George Patton. The book features more than 600 articles hand selected by respected World War II historian and writer, editor Richard Overy guides readers through the articles, putting the events into historical context. The enclosed DVD-ROM includes every article published by the Times during the war - nearly 100,000 - which is fully searchable and easy to navigate. Beautifully designed and illustrated with hundreds of maps and historical photographs, this book and DVD-ROM package is the perfect gift for any war, politics, or history buff.
Since the attacks of September 11, one organization has been at the forefront of America's military response. Its efforts turned the tide against al-Qaida in Iraq, killed Bin Laden and Zarqawi, rescued Captain Phillips and captured Saddam Hussein. Its commander can direct cruise missile strikes from nuclear submarines and conduct special operations raids anywhere in the world.
Relentless Strike tells the inside story of Joint Special Operations Command, the secret military organization that during the past decade has revolutionized counterterrorism, seamlessly fusing intelligence and operational skills to conduct missions that hit the headlines, and those that have remained in the shadows-until now. Because JSOC includes the military's most storied special operations units-Delta Force, SEAL Team 6, the 75th Ranger Regiment-as well as America's most secret aviation and intelligence units, this is their story, too. Relentless Strike reveals tension-drenched meetings in war rooms from the Pentagon to Iraq and special operations battles from the cabin of an MH-60 Black Hawk to the driver's seat of Delta Force's Pinzgauer vehicles as they approach their targets.
Through exclusive interviews, reporter Sean Naylor uses his unique access to reveal how an organization designed in the 1980s for a very limited mission set transformed itself after 9/11 to become the military's premier weapon in the war against terrorism and how it continues to evolve today.
A much-maligned minority throughout American history, atheists have been cast as a threat to the nation's moral fabric, barred from holding public office, and branded as irreligious misfits in a nation chosen by God. Yet, village atheists - as these godless freethinkers came to be known by the close of the nineteenth century - were also hailed for their gutsy dissent from stultifying pieties and for posing a necessary secularist challenge to majoritarian entanglements of church and state. Village Atheists explores the complex cultural terrain that unbelievers have long had to navigate in their fight to secure equal rights and liberties in American public life.
Leigh Eric Schmidt rebuilds the history of American secularism from the ground up, giving flesh and blood to these outspoken infidels, including itinerant lecturer Samuel Porter Putnam; rough-edged cartoonist Watson Heston; convicted blasphemer Charles B. Reynolds; and atheist sex reformer Elmina D. Slenker. He describes their everyday confrontations with devout neighbors and evangelical ministers, their strained efforts at civility alongside their urge to ridicule and offend their Christian compatriots. Schmidt examines the multilayered world of social exclusion, legal jeopardy, yet also civic acceptance in which American atheists and secularists lived. He shows how it was only in the middle decades of the twentieth century that nonbelievers attained a measure of legal vindication, yet even then they often found themselves marginalized on the edges of a God-trusting, Bible-believing nation.
Village Atheists reveals how the secularist vision for the United States proved to be anything but triumphant and age-defining for a country where faith and citizenship were'and still are'routinely interwoven.
In recent years, the world has learned just what is required to bravely serve America through SEAL Team Six. Now, for the first time, we hear from their commander.
As a 23-year veteran of the United States Navy SEAL Teams, Ryan Zinke received two Bronze Stars for battle valor, and eventually rose to command the elite members of SEAL Team Six. During his career, Zinke trained and commanded many of the men who would one day run the covert operations to hunt down Osama Bin Laden and save Captain Phillips (Maersk Alabama). He also served as mentor to now famous SEALs Marcus Luttrell (Lone Survivor) and Chris Kyle (American Sniper).
When Zinke signs with the U.S. Navy he turns his sights on joining the ranks of the most elite fighting force, the SEALs. He eventually reaches the top of the SEAL Teams as an assault team commander at SEAL Team Six. Zinke shares what it takes to train and motivate the most celebrated group of warriors on earth and then send them into harm’s way. Through it, he shares his proven problem-solving approach: Situation, Mission, Execution, Command and Control, Logistics.
American Commander also covers Zinke’s experience in running for Montana’s sole seat in the United States Congress. Zinke’s passion for his country shines as he conveys his vision to revitalize American exceptionalism. Scott McEwen and Ryan Zinke take readers behind the scenes and into the heart of America’s most-feared fighting force. American Commander will inspire a new generation of leaders charged with restoring a bright future for our children’s children.
The sweeping story of the struggle for gay and lesbian rights based on amazing interviews with politicians, military figures, and members of the entire LGBT community who face these challenges every day The fight for gay and lesbian civil rights, the years of outrageous injustice, the early battles, the heart-breaking defeats and the victories beyond the dreams of the gay rights pioneers is the most important civil rights issue of the present day. Lillian Faderman tells this unfinished story through the dramatic accounts of passionate struggles with sweep, depth and feeling. Against the dark backdrop of the 1950s, a few brave people began to fight back, paving the way for the revolutionary changes of the 1960s and beyond. Faderman discusses the protests in the 1960s; the counter reaction of the 1970s and early eighties; the decimated but united community during the AIDS epidemic; and the current hurdles for the right to marriage equality. The Gay Revolution paints a nuanced portrait of the LGBT civil rights movement. A defining account, this is the most complete and authoritative book of its kind.
Inspired by A History of the World in 100 Objects, Sam Roberts of The New York Times chose fifty objects that embody the narrative of New York for a feature article in the paper. Many more suggestions came from readers, and so Roberts has expanded the list to 101. Here are just a few of what this keepsake volume offers:
-The Flushing Remonstrance, a 1657 petition for religious freedom that was a precursor to the First Amendment to the Constitution.
-Beads from the African Burial Ground, 1700s. Slavery was legal in New York until 1827, although many free blacks lived in the city. The African Burial Ground closed in 1792 and was only recently rediscovered.
-The bagel, early 1900s. The quintessential and undisputed New York food (excepting perhaps the pizza).
-The Automat vending machine, 1912. Put a nickel in the slot and get a cup of coffee or a piece of pie. It was the early twentieth century version of fast food.
-The "I Love NY" logo designed by Milton Glaser in 1977 for a campaign to increase tourism. Along with Saul Steinberg's famousNew Yorker cover depicting a New Yorker's view of the world, it was perhaps the most famous and most frequently reproduced graphic symbol of the time.
Unique, sometimes whimsical, always important, A History of New York in 101 Objects is a beautiful chronicle of the remarkable history of the Big Apple.
In words and photographs, here is the story of the controversial Black Panther Party, founded in 1966 by Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton. The words are Seale's, with contributions from Kathleen Cleaver and many others; the photographs, which capture range from the party's charismatic leaders to its daily work in African American communities, are by Stephen Shames, who also provides an introduction. Published on the 50th anniversary of the party's founding, Power to the People describes the struggles and celebrates the achievements of the only radical political party in America to make a difference in the struggle for civil rights.
Beginning in January 1692, Salem Village in colonial Massachusetts witnessed the largest and most lethal outbreak of witchcraft in early America. Villagers - mainly young women - suffered from unseen torments that caused them to writhe, shriek, and contort their bodies, complaining of pins stuck into their flesh and of being haunted by specters. Believing that they suffered from assaults by an invisible spirit, the community began a hunt to track down those responsible for the demonic work. The resulting Salem Witch Trials, culminating in the execution of 19 villagers, persists as one of the most mysterious and fascinating events in American history.
Historians have speculated on a web of possible causes for the witchcraft that stated in Salem and spread across the region - religious crisis, ergot poisoning, an encephalitis outbreak, frontier war hysteria - but most agree that there was no single factor. Rather, as Emerson Baker illustrates in this seminal new work, Salem was "a perfect storm": a unique convergence of conditions and events that produced something extraordinary throughout New England in 1692 and the following years, and which has haunted us ever since.
Baker shows how a range of factors in the Bay colony in the 1690s, including a new charter and government, a lethal frontier war, and religious and political conflicts, set the stage for the dramatic events in Salem. Engaging a range of perspectives, he looks at the key players in the outbreak - the accused witches and the people they allegedly bewitched, as well as the judges and government officials who prosecuted them - and wrestles with questions about why the Salem tragedy unfolded as it did, and why it has become an enduring legacy.
Salem in 1692 was a critical moment for the fading Puritan government of Massachusetts Bay, whose attempts to suppress the story of the trials and erase them from memory only fueled the popular imagination. Baker argues that the trials marked a turning point in colonial history from Puritan communalism to Yankee independence, from faith in collective conscience to skepticism toward moral governance. A brilliantly told tale, A Storm of Witchcraft also puts Salem's storm into its broader context as a part of the ongoing narrative of American history and the history of the Atlantic World.
The adoption of firearms by American Indians between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries marked a turning point in the history of North America s indigenous peoples a cultural earthquake so profound, says David Silverman, that its impact has yet to be adequately measured. <i>Thundersticks </i>reframes our understanding of Indians historical relationship with guns, arguing against the notion that they prized these weapons more for the pyrotechnic terror guns inspired than for their efficiency as tools of war. Native peoples fully recognized the potential of firearms to assist them in their struggles against colonial forces, and mostly against one another.</p>The smoothbore, flintlock musket was Indians stock firearm, and its destructive potential transformed their lives. For the deer hunters east of the Mississippi, the gun evolved into an essential hunting tool. Most importantly, well-armed tribes were able to capture and enslave their neighbors, plunder wealth, and conquer territory. Arms races erupted across North America, intensifying intertribal rivalries and solidifying the importance of firearms in Indian politics and culture.</p>Though American tribes grew dependent on guns manufactured in Europe and the United States, their dependence never prevented them from rising up against Euro-American power. The Seminoles, Blackfeet, Lakotas, and others remained formidably armed right up to the time of their subjugation. Far from being a Trojan horse for colonialism, firearms empowered American Indians to pursue their interests and defend their political and economic autonomy over two centuries.</p>
On June 25, 1876, 611 men of the United States 7th Cavalry rode towards the banks of the Little Bighorn where three thousand Indians stood waiting for battle. The lives of two great war leaders would soon become forever linked: Crazy Horse, leader of the Oglala Sioux, and General George Armstrong Custer. This masterly dual biography tells the epic story of the lives of these two men: both were fighters of legendary daring, both became honoured leaders in their societies when still astonishingly young, and both died when close to the supreme political heights. Yet they - like the nations they represented - were as different as day and night. Custer had won his spurs in the American Civil War; his watchword was 'To promotion - or death!' and his restless ambition characterized a white nation in search of expansion and progress. Crazy Horse fought for a nomadic way of life fast yielding before the buffalo-hunters and the incursions of the white man. The Great Plains of North America provided the stage - and the prize.
Once Upon a Time in Russia is the untold true story of the larger-than-life billionaire oligarchs who surfed the waves of privatization to reap riches after the fall of the Soviet regime: Godfather of the Kremlin . Boris Berezovsky, a former mathematician whose first entrepreneurial venture was running an automobile reselling business, and Roman Abramovich, his dashing young protege who built a multi-billion-dollar empire of oil and aluminium.
Locked in a complex, uniquely Russian partnership, Berezovsky and Abramovich battled their way through the Wild East of Russia with Berezovsky acting as the younger man's krysha- literally, his roof, his protector. Written with the heart-stopping pace of a thriller -but even more compelling because it is true - this story of amassing obscene wealth and power depicts a rarefied world seldom seen up close.
Under Berezovsky's krysha, Abramovich built one of Russia's largest oil companies from the ground up and in exchange made cash deliveries - including 491 million dollars in just one year. But their relationship frayed when Berezovsky attacked President Vladimir Putin in the media - and had to flee to the UK. Abramovich continued to prosper.
Dead bodies trailed Berezovsky's footsteps, and threats followed him to London, where an associate of his died painfully and famously of Polonium poisoning. Then Berezovsky himself was later found dead, declared a suicide.
Exclusively sourced, capturing a momentous period in recent world history, Once Upon a Time in Russia is at once personal and political, offering an unprecedented look into the wealth, corruption, and power behind what Graydon Carter called 'the story of our age'.
The compelling quest to solve a great mystery of the twentieth century: the ultimate fate of Russia's last tsar and his family. In July 1991, nine skeletons were exhumed from a shallow grave near Ekaterinburg, Siberia, a few miles from the infamous cellar where the last tsar and his family had been murdered seventy-three years before. Were these the bones of the Romanovs? If so, why were the bones of the two younger Romanovs missing? Was Anna Anderson, celebrated in newspapers, books, and film, really Grand Duchess Anastasia? This book unearths the truth. Pulitzer Prize winner Robert K. Massie presents a colourful panorama of contemporary characters, illuminating the major scientific dispute between Russian experts and a team of Americans, whose findings - along with those of DNA scientists from Russia, America, and the UK - all contributed to solving one of history's most intriguing mysteries.
Today's Russia, also known as the Russian Federation, is often viewed as less powerful than the Soviet Union of the past. When stacked against other major nations in the present, however, the new Russia is a formidable if flawed player.
Russia: What Everyone Needs to Know provides fundamental information about the origins, evolution, and current affairs of the Russian state and society. The story begins with Russia's geographic endowment, proceeds through its experiences as a kingdom and empire, and continues through the USSR's three-quarters of a century, and finally the shocking breakup of that regime a generation ago. Chapters on the failed attempt to reform Communism under Mikhail Gorbachev, the halting steps toward democratization under Boris Yeltsin, and the entrenchment of central controls under Vladimir Putin bring the reader into the contemporary scene and to headline-grabbing events such as Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine and its military intervention in Syria. Drawing on trends within Russia and on ratings and rankings compiled by international organizations, Colton discusses the challenges facing the country - ranging from economic recession to demographic stress, political stagnation, and overextension in foreign policy - and to the realistic options for coping with them.
The book shows that, although Russia is not imprisoned by its history, it is heavily influenced by it. Colton illustrates Russia's greatest strength and, ironically, its greatest weakness: the ability of its people to adapt themselves to difficult circumstances beyond their immediate control. Russia, as Putin has asserted, will not soon be a second edition of the United States or Britain. But, Colton shows, there are ways in which it could become a better version of itself.
In Russia's Last Gasp, Prit Buttar looks at one of the bloodiest campaigns launched in the history of warfare - the Brusilov Offensive, sometimes known as the June Advance. The assault was intended to ease the pressure on Russia's British and French allies by diverting German troops from the Western Front and knocking Austria-Hungary out of the war. Russia's dismal military performance in the preceding years was forgotten, as the Brusilov Offensive was quickly characterised by innovative tactics, including the use of shock troops, a strategy that German armies would later adapt to great effect. Drawing on first-hand accounts and detailed archival research this is a dramatic retelling of the final years of the war on the Eastern Front, in which the Russian Army claimed military success but at a terrible cost.
At the end of 1918 one prescient American historian began to write a history of the Great War. What will you call it? he was asked. The First World War, was his bleak response. In Between the Wars Philip Ziegler examines the major international turning points - cultural and social as well as political and military - that led the world from one war to another. His approach is panoramic, touching on all parts of the world where history was being made, examining Gandhi's March to the Sea and the Chaco War in South America alongside Hitler's rise to power. It is the tragic story of a world determined that the horrors of the First World War would never be repeated, yet committed to a path which in hindsight was inevitably destined to end in a second, even more devastating conflict. Each chapter bears the unmistakable stamp of Ziegler's scholarship: a keen eye for the telling anecdote, elegant and fluid prose, and calm and fair judgments. In a world that grows ever more uncertain, its perspective on how hopes of peace can dissolve into the promise of war becomes more relevant with each passing day.
In the Trenches of Hell On 19 July 1916, 7000 Australian soldiers - in the first major action of the AIF on the Western Front - attacked entrenched German positions at Fromelles in northern France. By the next day, there were over 5500 casualties, including nearly 2000 dead - a bloodbath that the Australian War Memorial describes as 'the worst 24 hours in Australia's entire history. Just days later, three Australian Divisions attacked German positions at nearby Poziores, and over the next six weeks they suffered another 23,000 casualties. Of that bitter battle, the great Australian war correspondent Charles Bean would write, 'The field of Poziores is more consecrated by Australian fighting and more hallowed by Australian blood than any field which has ever existed ...' Yet the sad truth is that, nearly a century on from those battles, Australians know only a fraction of what occurred. This book brings the battles back to life and puts the reader in the moment, illustrating both the heroism displayed and the insanity of the British plan. With his extraordinary vigour and commitment to research, Peter FitzSimons shows why this is a story about which all Australians can be proud. And angry.
Following World War I, and aided by German and Italian immigrants, the aviation industry of Latin America developed their first airlines. Commercial aviation was greatly influenced by the German aviation industry while the military focused on Italian aircraft. Famous types including the Junkers F13, Ju52/3m, Fiat CR.20, Dornier Wal, Focke Wulf Fw58 Weihe, and the only Japanese type, the Mitsubishi Betty are all featured and comprise a detailed history for enthusiasts and modelers alike.
The German campaign in France and the Low Countries during the summer of 1940 was pivotal to Hitler's ambitions and fundamentally affected the course of the Second World War. In achieving in just six weeks what their fathers had failed to achieve in four years of the First World War, Germany altered the balance of power in Europe at a stroke...
Having honed the Blitzkrieg technique in preceding engagements, the German forces provided Hitler with a swift, efficient and decisive military victory over the Allied forces in France. Yet, as Lloyd Clark shows in this enthralling new book, it was far from being a foregone conclusion - Hitler's plan could easily have failed had the enemy been slightly less inept and the Germans been slightly less fortunate...Blitzkrieg will tell the story of the campaign, while highlighting the key technologies, decisions and events that led to German success, and will detail the mistakes, good fortune and chronic weaknesses in their planning process and approach to war fighting. There are also compelling portraits of the officers who played key roles, including Heinz Guderian, Ewin Rommel, Kurt Student, Charles de Gaulle and Bernard Montgomery...
Lloyd Clark reveals that far from the being undefeatable, the France 1940 campaign revealed Germany and its armed forces to be highly vulnerable - a fact dismissed by Hitler as he began to plan for his invasion of the Soviet Union - and offers a gripping reassessment of the myths that have built up around one of the Second World War's greatest military victories.
While the Great War raged, Australians were twice asked to vote on the question of military conscription for overseas service. The recourse to popular referendum on such an issue at such a time was without precedent anywhere in the world. The campaigns precipitated mass mobilisation, bitter argument, a split in the Labor Party, and the fall of a government. The defeat of the proposals was hailed by some as a victory of democracy over militarism, mourned by others as an expression of political disloyalty or a symptom of failed self-government.
But while the memory of the conscription campaigns once loomed large, it has increasingly been overshadowed by a preoccupation with the sacrifice and heroism of Australian soldiers – a preoccupation that has been reinforced during the centennial commemorations.
This volume redresses the balance. Across nine chapters, distinguished scholars consider the origins, unfolding, and consequences of the conscription campaigns, comparing local events with experiences in Britain, the United States, and other countries. A corrective to the ‘militarisation’ of Australian history, it is also a major new exploration of a unique and defining episode in Australia’s past.
These are the stories of fourteen men whose lives were changed the day that telegram arrived. In 1914 they were accountants, shopkeepers and labourers. When they were called to arms they became soldiers, sailors and airmen, fighting in the mud of the trenches, navigating the high seas or flying in the very first aerial war. Miles from their homes and families, they were pushed to their very limits and forever changed by what they experienced. Not all of them came back again. In Heroes of World War I Scott Addington tells the long-forgotten stories of fourteen brave men who rallied for their country. The voice of the ordinary soldier is typically overlooked by memories and histories of the First World War, and so this book is a tribute to them.
Until now the day-to-day working and opinions of the Vietnamese Peoples' Air Force (VPAF) has remained relatively unknown. For the first time the author focuses on the pilots and, using rare first-hand accounts and many new photographs analyses their fighter operations over North Vietnam between 1965-1975.
Frank opinions are voiced on how the North Vietnamese viewed the gradual escalation of the aerial conflict over their country, including details on key operations and VPAF tactics against USAF F-4s, F-105s, F-8s and B-52s. Details of the Black Friday Massacre, America's heaviest aerial defeat are related in the words of Nguyen Van Coc (the highest scoring pilot of the Vietnam conflict) who tells of his first kill and Dong Van De who recalls how he achieved the first ever double kill over American-flown aircraft, events which have never, until now, been released into the public domain. Leading VPAF pilots including Major General Pham Ngoc Lan discuss their aerial engagements and tactics and Nguyen Tiem Sam recollects his kills of F-4 Phantoms using only ATOLL air-to-air missiles.
Following exhaustive research, the author reveals much new data, which challenges previous reports. Three kills claimed by Lt. 'Duke' Cunningham, later a US Senator and the success of Operation Bolo, America's response to the Black Friday Massacre are discussed. Also for the first time outside Vietnam, details of the Christmas bombings are released including the controversial first night fighter kill of a B-52 by Vu Xuan Thieu - a fact which the US military have never accepted.Comprehensive appendices reveal the complete loss list of all VPAF personnel and a victory table with a break down of all known kills and shared kills and types.
Unquestionably the most iconic Japanese fighter of World War II, the Mitsubishi A6M Rei-Sen, Type Zero fighter was used from the initial raid on Pearl Harbor up to the Kamikaze attacks at the end of the war. Facing off against the likes of the Wildcat, Corsair and even the Spitfire, the Zero gained a legendary reputation amongst Allied pilots due to its incredible manoeuvrability. Detailed analysis of its technical qualities show why the Zero was so feared, but also pinpoints the weaknesses that would eventually be its downfall as Allied pilots learned how to combat it. A selection of historical photographs and unique artwork accompany the analysis as James D'Angina delves into the history of the premier Axis fighter of the Pacific Theatre, exploring the design and combat effectiveness of the Zero as well as the tactics developed by Allied pilots to counter it.
The Mosin-Nagant is the world's longest-surviving and most widely distributed military rifle, having armed the forces of Russia and many other countries for more than five decades. It has seen action from World War I to the present day, but is most famous for its role during World War II when it proved to be an excellent sniping weapon in the hands of marksmen such as Vasily Zaitsev and Simo Hayha. This study covers the rifle's entire combat history, from its early development through to its service in combat and the impact it has had on modern firearms. Dramatic battle reports and specially commissioned artwork complement the meticulously researched examination of the Mosin-Nagant provided by author Bill Harriman as he delves into the history of one of the most iconic rifles of World War II.
Ypres today is an international 'Town of Peace', but in 1914 the town, and the Salient, the 35-mile bulge in the Western Front, of which it is part, saw a 1500-day military campaign of mud and blood at the heart of the First World War that turned it into the devil's nursery. Distinguished biographer and historian of modern Europe Alan Palmer tells the story of the war in Flanders as a conflict that has left a deep social and political mark on the history of Europe. Denying Germany possession of the historic town of Ypres and access to the Channel coast was crucial to Britain's victory in 1918. But though Flanders battlefields are the closest on the continent to English shores, this was always much more than a narrowly British conflict. Passchendaele, the Menin Road, Hill 60 and the Messines Ridge remain names etched in folk memory. Militarily and tactically the four-year long campaign was innovative and a grim testing ground with constantly changing ideas of strategy and disputes between politicians and generals. Alan Palmer details all its aspects in an illuminating history of the place as much as the fighting man's experience.
As infantry units advanced across Europe the only support they could rely on from day to day was that provided by the heavy weapons of their own units. While thundering tanks struck fear into the hearts of their enemies it was the machine guns, mortars and light cannon that proved to be most important, causing the majority of casualties suffered during World War II. Common principles were shared across units but the wide variety of weapons available to the different armies altered the way they were used in battle. Focusing on the US, British, German and Soviet troops, this title offers a comprehensive guide to infantry fire support tactics used through World War II. Combat reports are complemented by specially commissioned artwork to show the way in which tactics varied, and highlight how developments obliged opposing armies to review their own methods.
For centuries, duelling played an integral role in the preservation of the aristocratic order in Europe, defying attempts by both church and state to ban the practice. Moreover, the romance and drama of the duel has made it an enduring fixture in films, literature, and the theatre. In The Duel in European History, renowned historian Victor Kiernan writes with his characteristic wit and insight of duelling's evolution from its medieval origins - when it was regarded as a badge of rank - to the early twentieth century, by which time it was seen as an irrational anachronism. In doing so, he shows how the duelling tradition was something unique to Europe and its colonies, and, in its contribution to the development of the officer corps, played a key part in shaping European military power. Drawing on a vast range of historical and cultural sources, this is the definitive account of a violent ritual that continues to fascinate even today.
This authoritative work provides an essential perspective on terrorism by offering a rare opportunity for analysis and reflection at a time of ongoing violence, threats, and reprisals. Some of the best international specialists on the subject examine terrorism's complex history from antiquity to the present day and find that terror, long the weapon of the weak against the strong, is a tactic as old as warfare itself.
Beginning with the Zealots of the first century CE, contributors go on to discuss the Assassins of the Middle Ages, the 1789 Terror movement in Europe, Bolshevik terrorism during the Russian Revolution, Stalinism, resistance terrorism during World War II, and Latin American revolutionary movements of the late 1960s. Finally, they consider the emergence of modern transnational terrorism, focusing on the roots of Islamic terrorism, al Qaeda, and the contemporary suicide martyr. Along the way, they provide a groundbreaking analysis of how terrorism has been perceived throughout history. What becomes powerfully clear is that only through deeper understanding can we fully grasp the present dangers of a phenomenon whose repercussions are far from over.
This updated edition includes a new chapter analyzing the rise of ISIS and key events such as the 2015 Paris attacks.
Warfare: A Visual History combines historical engravings and diagrams with an engaging modern text to create a visual study of humankind's extraordinary ingenuity in inventing new ways to wage war. A chronological and geographical study of arms and armour is followed by a separate section that provides thumbnail studies of individual items of militaria-from swords to siege engines, from helmets to handguns-so that the researcher can choose to study a particular era or seek an evolutionary overview. Navigational features include coloured tabs with cross-references, timelines of key battles and inventions, and silhouettes of warriors through time.