A magnificent and visually stunning account of over 11 000 years of human expansion. By steppe, desert, and ocean should become a classic. (Ian Morris, Antiquity) [This book] demonstrates how wrong Kipling was: East may be East and West may be West, but over the millennia the twain have repeatedly met. (Tom Holland, Books of the Year 2015, History Today) the author's modest, mellifluous style, and his honed skill for storytelling, make the read pleasurable and stimulating, and - ven at 500 pages - hard to put down. (Mike Pitts, British Archaeology) A magnificent and visually stunning account of over 11,000 years of human expansion. By Steppe, Desert and Ocean should become a classic. (Ian Morris, Antiquity) By Steppe is a masterpiece of multidisciplinary historical narrative ... Beautifully and clearly written, also lavishly illustrated, this is a work of astounding learning and succinct authority by one of the best archaeologists in the world. He happens also to be a skilled storyteller. Revel in the wonderful book's delights, for the archaeological blank is no longer. You won't regret it. (Prof Brian Fagan, Current World Archaeology) [Sir Barry Cunliffe] is our greatest living archaeologist - and writer on the subject. Who else could have told this epic 10,000-year-old tale? ... Written in his usual clear, authoritative, elegant style not a word is wasted. What a pleasure it is to read ancient history written in English as she should be spoken. (Lindsay Fulcher, Minerva) Cunliffe is a master storyteller, explaining his carefully researched conclusions through polished language and apropos turns of phrase that make his book a breeze despite its depth and breadth. (Publishers Weekly) This magnificent study should inspire many more journeys of discovery. (Andy Ffrench, The Oxford Times) In tracing the rise of Eurasian civilization, Cunliffe makes clear that history is much more than just one thing after another. As migrations and conquests pile up in the book, it becomes apparent that a dizzying array of forces interacted to produce the modern world. (Science News). Barry Cunliffe taught archaeology in the Universities of Bristol and Southampton and was Professor of European Archaeology at the University of Oxford from 1972 to 2008, thereafter becoming Emeritus Professor. He has excavated widely in Britain (Fishbourne, Bath, Danebury, Hengistbury Head, Brading) and in the Channel Islands, Brittany, and Spain, and has been President of the Council for British Archaeology and of the Society of Antiquaries, Governor of the Museum of London, and a Trustee of the British Museum. He is currently a Commissioner of English Heritage. His many publications include The Ancient Celts (1997), Facing the Ocean (2001), The Druids: A Very Short Introduction (2010), and Britain Begins (2012), all also published by Oxford University Press. He received a knighthood in 2006.. By Steppe, Desert, and Ocean is nothing less than the story of how humans first started building the globalized world we know today. Set on a huge continental stage, from Europe to China, it is a tale covering over 10,000 years, from the origins of farming around 9000 BC to the expansion of the Mongols in the thirteenth century AD. An unashamedly 'big history', it charts the development of European, Near Eastern, and Chinese civilizations and the growing links between them by way of the Indian Ocean, the silk Roads, and the great steppe corridor (which crucially allowed horse riders to travel from Mongolia to the Great Hungarian Plain within a year). Along the way, it is also the story of the rise and fall of empires, the development of maritime trade, and the shattering impact of predatory nomads on their urban neighbours. Above all, as this immense historical panorama unfolds, we begin to see in clearer focus those basic underlying factors - the acquisitive nature of humanity, the differing environments in which people live, and the dislocating effect of even slight climatic variation - which have driven change throughout the ages, and which help us better understand our world today.
Excellent read Fascinating reading, it brought together in one clear explanation many of the books I'd read earlier. His development of the 'connectivity' thème was particularly interesting showing the 'globalisation' of Eurasia over many millenia. The maps and illustrations are clear and very useful. Highly recommended for a non specialised reader such as myself.
Indiana Jones but scholarly Stunning book with gorgeous photos and lots of maps. Covers the history of Eurasia and is absolutely fascinating, if not always an easy read. I didn't know how little history I knew until I read this book.
A great book Brilliant overview of the history of Eurasia from an unusual and effective perspective, and very readable.
Which says all I gave my soft-back version to my son and bought this in hard-back, in tribute to the author
Grande sintesi storica Absolutely awesome, an unusual point of view about the whole eurasian history, moving the usual center of human development from South Europe to the whole continent, linking all the people living there. Is a book that makes you grow... Sorry it would never be translated in Italian, as usual... E' certamente un libro di storia fuori dal comune, come altri di questo autore che ha una grande esperienza archeologica sul campo e una vasta conoscenza della storia dell intero continente euroasiatico, cosa piuttosto rara. Ha realizzato una storia globale dell uomo collegando tra loro le grandi storie dell Occidente che ormai conosciamo a quelle non meno grandi di altri popoli che conosciamo assai di meno (Cina, Siberia, India, estremo oriente e oltre) ma soprattutto alle cause prime che generano la storia, ossia la geologia, il clima e gli spostamenti delle popolazioni. Difficile che sia mai tradotta in italiano, ma la consiglio vivamente, è una di quelle opere che cambiano la percezione della storia nel suo complesso...
Comprehensive overview of cultural development in Eurasia Sir Barry Cunliffe gives a comprehensive overview about the development of cultures and civilisations that took place in Eurasia. With a lot of maps and pictures in addition to the text easy to understand even for the layman the book is a great pleasure to read. Although it contains few obvious mistakes (i.e. the Altai lies not west but east to the Urals, and China is bordered by mountains not in the east but in the west) and a statement put definitely wrong (how could humans - as mammals - be "by nature lactoseintolerant"?) it is absolutely recommendable for those of us who are interested in their very roots and how networks between the peoples enhanced cultural development and buliding of civilisations in Eurasia.
A thought provoking history book Very interesting, illuminating read. Well written and full of facts and easy to understand ideas.
Four Stars Excellent
A comprehensive study. This is a very interesting book. It will take time to absorb the huge amount of complex information is contains.
Five Stars great book.
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