"Strongly interdisciplinary and informed by deep scholarship, this well-written work has value for the history of education, European history, literature, folklore, and children's literature studies...highly recommended"--Choice “A rich bibliographic resource that will be valued by scholars of children’s literature and medievalism”—Speculum “Useful information...valuable”—Arthuriana “Richmond’s study is thorough and her descriptions are rich in detail...valuable”—Children's Literature Association Quarterly Knights and ladies, giants and dragons, tournaments, battles, quests and crusades are commonplace in stories for children. This book examines how late Victorians and Edwardians retold medieval narratives of chivalry--epics, romances, sagas, legends and ballads. Stories of Beowulf, Arthur, Gawain, St. George, Roland, Robin Hood and many more thrilled and instructed children, and encouraged adult reading. Lavish volumes and schoolbooks of the era featured illustrated texts, many by major artists. Children's books, an essential part of Edwardian publishing, were disseminated throughout the English-speaking world. Many are being reprinted today. This book examines related contexts of Medievalism expressed in painting, architecture, music and public celebrations, and the works of major authors, including Sir Walter Scott, Tennyson, Longfellow and William Morris. The book explores national identity expressed through literature, ideals of honor and valor in the years before World War I, and how childhood reading influenced 20th-century writers as diverse as C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Siegfried Sassoon, David Jones, Graham Greene, Ian Fleming and John Le Carre.
Books that Changed the World tells the fascinating stories behind 50 books that, in ways great and small, have changed the course of human history. Andrew Taylor sets each text in its historical context and explores its wider influence and legacy. Whether he's discussing the incandescent effect of The Qu'ran, the enduring influence of Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, of the way in which Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe glavanized the anti-slavery movement, Taylor has written a stirring and informative testament to human ingenuity and endeavour. Ranging from The Iliad to Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, the Kama Sutra to Lady Chatterley's Lover, this is the ultimate, thought-provoking read for book-lovers everywhere.
Or How Clarence Saved England: A Tale of the Great Invasion
Author: P. G. Wodehouse
Publisher: The Floating Press
Only a comic genius of the magnitude of P.G. Wodehouse could take a weighty subject like war and turn it into a rib-tickling joyride. The Swoop! is an account of a fictionalized invasion of England by several enemy armies -- and of the indomitable Boy Scout leader who uses psychological warfare to turn the leaders of the invading forces against one another.
The bestselling and controversial new history of the 'British Isles', including Ireland from the author of Europe: A History. Emphasizing our long-standing European connections and positing a possible break-up of the United Kingdom, this is agenda-setting work is destined to become a classic. 'If ever a history book were a tract for the times, it is The Isles: A History ... a masterwork.' Roy Porter, The Times 'Davies is among the few living professional historians who write English with vitality, sparkle, economy and humour. The pages fly by, not only because the pace is well judged but also because the surprises keep coming.' Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, Sunday Times 'A book which really will change the way we think about our past . marvellously rich and stimulating' Noel Malcolm, Evening Standard 'A historiographical milestone.' Niall Ferguson, Sunday Times 'The full shocking force of this book can only be appreciated by reading it.' Andrew Marr, Observer 'It is too soon to tell if [Norman Davies] will become the Macaulay or Trevelyan of our day: that depends on the reading public. He has certainly made a good try. This is narrative history on the grand scale - compulsively readable, intellectually challenging and emotionally exhilirating.' David Marquand, Literary Review
Here is an intriguing exploration of the ways in which the history of the Spanish Conquest has been misread and passed down to become popular knowledge of these events. The book offers a fresh account of the activities of the best-known conquistadors and explorers, including Columbus, Cort?s, and Pizarro. Using a wide array of sources, historian Matthew Restall highlights seven key myths, uncovering the source of the inaccuracies and exploding the fallacies and misconceptions behind each myth. This vividly written and authoritative book shows, for instance, that native Americans did not take the conquistadors for gods and that small numbers of vastly outnumbered Spaniards did not bring down great empires with stunning rapidity. We discover that Columbus was correctly seen in his lifetime--and for decades after--as a briefly fortunate but unexceptional participant in efforts involving many southern Europeans. It was only much later that Columbus was portrayed as a great man who fought against the ignorance of his age to discover the new world. Another popular misconception--that the Conquistadors worked alone--is shattered by the revelation that vast numbers of black and native allies joined them in a conflict that pitted native Americans against each other. This and other factors, not the supposed superiority of the Spaniards, made conquests possible. The Conquest, Restall shows, was more complex--and more fascinating--than conventional histories have portrayed it. Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest offers a richer and more nuanced account of a key event in the history of the Americas.
H.G. Wells created The War of the Worlds, his archetypical story of alien invasion, amidst an 1890s backdrop of rampant and rapid industrialization, global British hegemony, and incipient war with Europe-all of which are reflected in his tale of Martian attack. The story remains startlingly relevant today in our era wracked with worldwide concerns over terrorism and national security. This new edition--with an introduction by mass-psychology expert Robert E. Bartholomew and classic illustrations by Alvin-Correa--is sure to enthrall and intrigue yet another generation of readers.