R.C. Davis provided the classic account of the European medieval world; equipping generations of undergraduate and ‘A’ level students with sufficient grasp of the period to debate diverse historical perspectives and reputations. His book has been important grounding for both modernists required to take a course in medieval history, and those who seek to specialise in the medieval period. In updating this classic work to a third edition, the additional author now enables students to see history in action; the diverse viewpoints and important research that has been undertaken since Davis’ second edition, and progressed historical understanding. Each of Davis original chapters now concludes with a ‘new directions and developments’ section by Professor RI Moore, Emeritus of Newcastle University. A key work updated in a method that both enhances subject understanding and sets important research in its wider context. A vital resource, now up-to-date for generations of historians to come.
To many of us the history of Europe from the age of Constantine to the middle of the thirteenth century is dark and confused. In his successful book, which is based on background lectures to students, Professor Davis has concentrated on the most important topics, and largely on western European themes, to provide a well-lighted and comprehensible pattern. In Part I, the Dark Ages, he begins with the new capital of the Roman Empire and the impact of the barbarian invasions. Then follow studies of the Church and the Papacy and of the rise of Islam. After chapters on the rise and fall of the Frankish empire, the part ends with an economic survey of Europe at the end of the ninth century. The second half of the book begins with the Saxon Empire and has chapters on monasticism, the reform of the Papacy, the Crusades and the feudal monarchy in France. It concludes with accounts of St. Francis, Frederick II and Louis IX. One of the unusual features of Part II is the completion of each chapter with translations of original documents giving the reader not only entertainment but also a hint of the sources of the writing of history. Professor Davis has a clear style, an eye for the essential and an ear for the apt quotation. He has written an admirable introduction, at the level of first-year undergraduates, to a fascinating but difficult period of history. It is now issued in paperback for the first time.
Noted teachers and scholars William J. Duiker and Jackson J. Spielvogel present a balanced, highly readable overview of world history that explores common challenges and experiences that unite the human past and identify key global patterns over time. Tho
This excellent and concise summary of the social and economic history of Europe in the Middle Ages examines the changing patterns and developments in agriculture, commerce, trade, industry and transport that took place during the millennium between the fall of the Roman Empire and the discovery of the New World. After outlining the trends in demography, prices, rent, and wages and in the patterns of settlement and cultivation, the author also summarizes the basic research done in the last twenty-five years in many aspects of the social and economic history of medieval Europe, citing French, German and Italian works as well as English. Significantly, this study surveys the present state of discussion on a number of on unresolved issues and controversies, and in some areas suggests common sense answers. Some of the problems of economic growth, or the lack of it, are looked at in the light of current theories in sociology and economic thought. This classic text, first published in 1972, makes a useful and interesting general introduction for students of medieval and economic history.
Political and social commentators regularly bemoan the decline of morality in the modern world. They claim that the norms and values that held society together in the past are rapidly eroding, to be replaced by permissiveness and empty hedonism. But as Edward Rubin demonstrates in this powerful account of moral transformations, these prophets of doom are missing the point. Morality is not diminishing; instead, a new morality, centered on an ethos of human self-fulfillment, is arising to replace the old one. As Rubin explains, changes in morality have gone hand in hand with changes in the prevailing mode of governance throughout the course of Western history. During the Early Middle Ages, a moral system based on honor gradually developed. In a dangerous world where state power was declining, people relied on bonds of personal loyalty that were secured by generosity to their followers and violence against their enemies. That moral order, exemplified in the early feudal system and in sagas like The Song of Roland, The Song of the Cid, and the Arthurian legends has faded, but its remnants exist today in criminal organizations like the Mafia and in the rap music of the urban ghettos. When state power began to revive in the High Middle Ages through the efforts of the European monarchies, and Christianity became more institutionally effective and more spiritually intense, a new morality emerged. Described by Rubin as the morality of higher purposes, it demanded that people devote their personal efforts to achieving salvation and their social efforts to serving the emerging nation-states. It insisted on social hierarchy, confined women to subordinate roles, restricted sex to procreation, centered child-rearing on moral inculcation, and countenanced slavery and the marriage of pre-teenage girls to older men. Our modern era, which began in the late 18th century, has seen the gradual erosion of this morality of higher purposes and the rise of a new morality of self-fulfillment, one that encourages individuals to pursue the most meaningful and rewarding life-path. Far from being permissive or a moral abdication, it demands that people respect each other's choices, that sex be mutually enjoyable, that public positions be allocated according to merit, and that society provide all its members with their minimum needs so that they have the opportunity to fulfill themselves. Where people once served the state, the state now functions to serve the people. The clash between this ascending morality and the declining morality of higher purposes is the primary driver of contemporary political and cultural conflict. A sweeping, big-idea book in the vein of Francis Fukuyama's The End of History, Charles Taylor's The Secular Age, and Richard Sennett's The Fall of Public Man, Edward Rubin's new volume promises to reshape our understanding of morality, its relationship to government, and its role in shaping the emerging world of High Modernity.
This book offers a view of Iran through politics, history and literature, showing how the three angles combine. Iran, being a revolutionary society, experienced two great revolutions within the short span of just seventy years, from the 1900s to the 1970s. Both were massive revolts of the society against the state; the main objective of the first being to establish lawful government to make modernisation possible, and the second, to overthrow the absolute and arbitrary state, though this time mainly under the banner of religion and Marxism-Leninism and anti-Westernism. Neither of them succeeded in their lofty ideals for reasons that are explained and analysed within. The author also offers a detailed description of Iran’s short-term society, examining the political and intellectual lives of two of the most remarkable intellectuals-cum-politicians of the twentieth century. This book provides an overview of modern Persian literature, both poetry and prose, and discusses the works of three of the most remarkable Persian poets and writers of the period. It considers classical Persian literature through the great variety of its form and substance, and neo-classical literary developments in the nineteenth century, covering the whole history of Persian literature. This is crowned in the last chapter by the love poetry of one of the greatest Persian poets. Iran will be of interest to students and scholars of Iranian studies and Middle East Politics.
This book considers some of the Western interpretations of The Shahnameh - Iran's national epic, and argues that these interpretations are not only methodologically flawed, but are also more revealing of Western concerns and anxieties about Iran than they are about the Shahnameh.
A Journey from Viking Iceland to Crusader Jerusalem
Author: Victoria Clark
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Just before the year 1000 a young Viking named Thorvald the Far-farer turned his back on the pagan gods of his fathers to preach the Christian gospel, travelling to Jerusalem, the golden heart of all medieval world maps. A thousand years later Victoria Clark retraces his epic voyage to discover how the dramatic events of Thorvald's Europe still resonate today. This is a compelling, highly acclaimed blend of history and travel, in the manner of William Dalrymple's bestselling From the Holy Mountain. 'Deeply engaging . . . The author's great sensitivity shines as brightly as ever it did in Why Angels Fall' Independent on Sunday 'She writes books whose ambition and impressiveness must leave most of her journalist friends ill with envy' Financial Times 'Entertaining, instructive and relevant' Sunday Times Book of the Week 'I read every word of it, and went back over some of the chapters and read them again for sheer pleasure. A triumph' John Cornwell, author of Hitler's Pope
Some of the most portentous events in medieval history—the Cathar crusade, the persecution and mass burnings of heretics, the papal inquisition—fall between 1000 and 1250, when the Catholic Church confronted the threat of heresy with force. Moore’s narrative focuses on the motives and anxieties of elites who waged war on heresy for political gain.