The Silk Roads: A New History of the World (Paperback)Peter Frankopan (author)
In this magisterial, eye-opening volume, Peter Frankopan provides a major reassessment of world history, turning away from the Eurocentric interpretations of the global past and honing in on the true cradle of human civilisation – the ancient trade routes that linked Asia, Middle East and Europe.
The halfway point between east and west… While such countries may seem wild to us, these are no backwaters, no obscure wastelands. In fact the bridge between east and west is the very crossroads of civilisation. Far from being on the fringe of global affairs, these countries lie at its very centre – as they have done since the beginning of history.
How is it that the places that in the earliest cartography were placed at the centre of the world are now almost impossible to locate on modern maps?
Peter Frankopan considers how as western readers of history, our understanding of the world is shaped by the narrow focus on western Europe and the United States and accounts of history that preferences ‘the winners of recent history.’
Thoroughly researched and gracefully written, The Silk Roads is an antidote to these Eurocentric accounts, examining several continents and centuries and the factors that influenced the flow of ideas and goods.
Frankopan is a multilingual Oxford Byzantist who with The Silk Roads epically adds to his crusades-heavy bibliography, writing a 650-page history of the world from the point of view of east-west interaction, the Middle East and Asia firmly at its centre.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 656
Weight: 476 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 mm
‘This epic book traces the cycle of human creation and destruction along the Silk Roads, now rich in billions of dollars’ worth of oil, minerals and labour. We must learn to pass along them without glancing greedily from side to side to gauge what we can gain. One alternative is to travel in the privacy of our own minds – an opportunity this charismatic and essential book amply provides.’ - The Telegraph
'Many books have been written which claim to be "A New History of the World". This one fully deserves the title...It is difficult, in a short review, to do justice to a book so ambitious, so detailed and so fascinating as this one.' - Gerald DeGroot, The Times
'A book that roves as widely as the geography it describes, encompassing worlds as far removed as those of Herodotus and Saddam Hussein, Hammurabi and Hitler...It is a tribute to Frankopan's scholarship and mastery of sources in multiple languages that he is as sure-footed on the ancient world as he is on the medieval and modern.' - Justin Marozzi, The Sunday Times
'My book of the year: history on a grand scale, with a sweep of ambition that is rare ... A remarkable book on many levels, and one that anyone would have been proud to write: a proper historical epic of dazzling range, ambition and achievement.' - William Dalrymple, The Observer
'The most illuminating book of the year ... A healthy antidote to Eurocentric accounts of history.' - Times Literary Supplement
'Splendid ... tightly researched ... invigorating and profound with enough storytelling to excite the reader and enough fresh scholarship to satisfy the intellect...charismatic and essential.' - Bettany Hughes, The Daily Telegraph
'A rare book that makes you question your assumptions about the world.' - The Wall Street Journal
'Dazzlingly good.' - The Evening Standard
'Based on astonishingly wide and deep reading and in all areas draws on the latest research... It is full of vivid and recondite details.' - Independent
'Full of intriguing insights and fascinating details.' - The Observer
'Beautifully constructed, a terrific and exhilarating read and a new perspective on world history.' - History Today
'Monumental...prodigious...astonishing. Frankopan is an exhilarating companion for the journey along the routes which conveyed silk, slaves, ideas, religion, and disease, and around which today may hang the destiny of the world.' - Vanity Fair
'Sumptuous, intriguing and surprising.' - Sir Paddy Ashdown
'This is a stimulating primer on modern geopolitics written with a historian's eye for colour and detail.' - The Saturday Telegraph
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“Changing the Focus of World History”
With an inspiring range of storytelling this re-balances world history much further east than we are used to. It's a wonderful achievement.
“The Silk Roads”
Great read. History as it should be written. If you are interested in history or not, this is a book that should be read. Super narrative and well researched.
“Wel written and informative - interesting read.”
Just thought I'd pick this up on the by as am studying exchange of high status goods between the Indian Subcontinent and Medieval Central Europe.
Gives pause for thought and well researched, I enjoyed reading it.
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