The History of the Ancient World: From the Earliest Accounts to the Fall of Rome   Import  Single ASIN  Import  Muleiple

(5 customer reviews)

$48.30

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SKU: 039305974X Categories: , ,

Additional information

Publisher ‏

‎ *Norton agency titles; 1st edition (8 January 2010)

Language ‏

‎ English

Hardcover ‏

‎ 896 pages

ISBN-10 ‏

‎ 039305974X

ISBN-13 ‏

‎ 978-0393059748

Dimensions ‏

‎ 16.51 x 4.57 x 24.38 cm

5 reviews for The History of the Ancient World: From the Earliest Accounts to the Fall of Rome   Import  Single ASIN  Import  Muleiple

  1. Belinda Lee


    Susan Wise Bauer writes brilliantly! If you have gone through Story of the World and need something heavier, this is definitely a great next read. Absolutely loved reading this in my free time!

  2. Amazon Customer


    Good

  3. Spencer

    A great read; useful for homeschooling; neither purely religious nor purely secular
    Given the range of material Bauer covers in this tome, it is amazing how well she weaves the timelines and stories together. The first section of the book begins with the civilizations with only fragmentary records. None of her work is original, but she assembles stories of Sumer, what would become Egypt, the Indus Valley, and China into a coherent narrative.She then moves through the various twists and turns of various civilizations as the records improve, new technological and civic inventions grow, and cities become more prominent. What emerges is something that is more complex than the pictures of clay tables with cuneiform writing and fragments of pottery that I remember from my studies of history. Thankfully, she also expands the scope of her interest beyond a flyby of Mesopotamia leading to the Greeks and Romans and landing in a Euro-centric focus. What we get is a fairly balanced record of known civilizations, including those in the East, the Mid-East, and toward the West.Bauer is surveying four or five thousand years of history of multiple, integrated civilizations. It is amazing that she was able to sort through so much material. This, of course, means that there is a great deal detail left out and many places where Bauer was forced to pick a reading of history and run with it. It is clear from some of her footnotes that she is aware of alternate interpretations, but it’s a survey, not a monograph on a particular subject.The book is written in a manner that will displease some Christians and also anger vocal secularists. Bauer assumes an ancient earth and treats the Hebrew Bible in the same manner she treats other historical sources.This, of course, means that she is much less derogatory toward the value of those ancient documents than many secular scholars would be, which leads to accusations of religious bias. At the same time, she also does not hold to a young earth and sometimes floats assertions that the biblical record was sanitized to make certain kings look good. This perspective will tend to annoy some Christians, particularly homeschoolers seeking to rigorously shield their children from opposing views. (A quick scan of the Amazon reviews shows that both of these positions exist in decent numbers.)Frankly, as a conservative Christian, I think this book is an excellent way to introduce a child later in her schooling to critical sources. There will be a point at which our kids are going to have to engage with other voices to grow and learn, Bauer’s approach is good historically and at least fair toward the Judeo-Christian tradition. I can’t give advice to secularist parents, other than to note that her assumptions are pretty mild and certainly not satisfying in any religious way. This isn’t a book seeking to promote the Judeo-Christian tradition as the one, true religion. It also doesn’t go out of the way to bash Judaism and Christianity, either. As a religious text, it fails; as a history book, it’s pretty good.Aside from debates about Bauer’s biases, this is, above all, an extremely readable book. It certainly isn’t a novel, graphic or otherwise, but it was a pleasure to pick this book up and read a couple of chapters every day. I wouldn’t recommend the volume for elementary readers, but for a thoughtful high schooler this would make an excellent text for homeschool or as summer reading. I picked up an electronic copy of the study guide that goes with the book and it is well structured with enough questions and answers to help this integrate easily into the homeschooling parent’s life, without having to become an expert.This is the sort of book that I wish I had had access to when I was younger. I would have read the volume just for edification, beyond my regular school work. I am looking forward to the next two volumes in the series and very hopeful that Bauer writes the fourth and final volume in the very near future.Note: This is an edited version of a review posted at Ethics and Culture.

  4. EyeDoc

    Truly worthwhile reeading
    Its late, will make this brief. I bought all three of Dr Bauer’s books, am reading the Ancient History tome first- excellent writing, valid insights, you will learn much while being engaged. She has done her homework and one can only hope more books are forthcoming.

  5. Jordan Phillips

    I Would Give This Book 6 Stars if I Could
    Let me start out by saying I am a rabid bibliophile and have read innumerable books about ancient history. This one by far has been one of the best I have ever read. I will give you the main points as to why this book is worth the buy.1. Readability: The author writes a book that is easy to read. She does not strive to use jargon trying to impress you with her literary prowess or use obscure terms to impress her professor or fellowship buddies. Instead she uses easy and concise language that flows so you do not feel like you have to go back and reread as some historians are.2. Research: This is an excellently researched book. The author has actually read the sources and easily reflects these sources in her writing.3. Honest: This is a breath of fresh air to say the least. The Author (unlike most historians) will readily admit when there are large gaps in the historical record then (again unlike most historians) she will give you the events that are believed to have happened but leaves a caveat of “no one really knows and this is just best guess”. Honestly, how many historians don’t try to interject their own beliefs as facts? Like I said a breath of fresh air. She leaves concise footnotes that are easy to read and not a mile long or just copies of the source she pulled the information from. She gives equal time and facts to all religions and does not merely write religion off as if it is some nasty part of history that needs to disappear.4. Humorous: This is what really put this book over the top. The author keeps the information humorous when the occasion calls for it. There are a few times reading this book that I actually “LOL”d. As an example when she explains the Egyptian royal tendency of marrying your sister she explains it as “icky”. I thought little things like that made this book awesome.This book is an excellent survey and I would highly recommend for any historian from novice to professor.

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