By Steppe, Desert, and Ocean: The Birth of EurasiaDe (autor) Barry Cunliffe
en Limba Engleză Paperback – 28 Sep 2017
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.
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.
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.
[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.
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.
This magnificent study should inspire many more journeys of discovery.
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 Museumof 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.