Customer Reviews


7 Reviews
5 star:
 (1)
4 star:
 (1)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:
 (2)
1 star:
 (2)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine history tome but not really an atlas....
I give this book four stars because, while it is really not an atlas, it is a wonderful overview of history.
The book features the superb photography/illustrations that folks expect from National Geographic. These graphics are used to good effect, showing the progression from early history to the late 1990's. I find it a most enjoyable "refresher course" in world...
Published on February 20, 2003

versus
158 of 158 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but see below
I've been on an ancient history kick lately, and since it's been about 20 years since I've done a lot of reading in this area, I thought I would check out what's available in the way of good historical atlases of the ancient world, or of world history in general.
This book is one of the half-dozen big atlases out there that are available. Since I've been looking in...
Published on September 21, 2002 by magellan


Most Helpful First | Newest First

158 of 158 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but see below, September 21, 2002
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
I've been on an ancient history kick lately, and since it's been about 20 years since I've done a lot of reading in this area, I thought I would check out what's available in the way of good historical atlases of the ancient world, or of world history in general.
This book is one of the half-dozen big atlases out there that are available. Since I've been looking in detail at all of the current ones, I'll give brief comparisons and you can go from there and decide which one might be best for you.
Atlases are great for looking up those events, both momentous and not-so-momentous, to get a quick grasp and overview of the situation without getting bogged down in some more detailed and ponderous history. All the current ones do a decent job of that, but they very in terms of readability and the number of maps included, and the degree to which they integrate the visual maps and materials with the text. Here's the scoop on all of these.
1. For my money, John Haywood's Atlas of World History is the best combination of features and price. Haywood writes very well and has a nice, deft touch with the material, unlike many atlases, whose prose often sounds somewhat dry and technical. The book was written along with a team of graphics experts skilled at combining the written word with maps and illustrations, and it shows. Although not as large as the Hammond and Dorling-Kindersley books, it's still excellent and only a fraction of their cost. Two other nice features are the color-coded timelines which accompany each two-page spread, and the many special symbols and legends on the maps, which are used to illustrate and highlight points in the text.
2. The Oxford Atlas of World History is also well written, and has lots of maps just like the Haywood volume. I found the writing style somewhat drier than Haywood's, but it's one of the most scholarly of the atlases out there, and could be used by college students given the level of presentation of the material. These two books are otherwise very close, except that the Haywood volume is less than half the price of this one.
3. The Nat'l Geographic offering has some of the most entertaining writing by Noel Grove and Daniel Boorstin I've found in any history text. Some of the tidbits are really great, such as Grove's comment that "Russia's...Peter the Great died at the age of 53 after diving into the Neva River in winter to rescue drowning sailors." And "Vikings were not just ruthless killers; they traded as often as they raided, and their wives knew rights that other medieval women could scarcely imagine."
However, the main shortcoming of this atlas is that it contains almost no maps. Most of the illustrations are arts or crafts related, for some reason. In that sense the book hardly qualifies as an atlas, and it would be more accurate to say it's a more like a well-illustrated history of the world, instead.
4. The Hammond Atlas, along with the DK, is physically the biggest, thickest, and most comprehensive of the 6 discussed here. It's also the highest priced, and more expensive than the cheapest one here by a factor of four or five. It's still a fine atlas despite the cost, and I'd still be quite happy with this one as it's certainly a beautifully done atlas.
The book has over 600 maps and illustrations, many of which show such nice details (which not all the other atlases do) as mountain ranges, and in general are beautifully colored with a variety of symbols showing movements of peoples and armies and other important historical and cultural details, similar to the Haywood volume.
The level of presentation of the material is also high, and would be appropriate up through college level, but the prose style is a little drier and more technical sounding than the DK or Haywood, for example. However, someone who is already pretty knowledgeable about history could probably still use this atlas, compared with the DK, which, although more attractive graphically, is obviously aimed at a broader audience.
5. The Dorling-Kindersley atlas is the most beautifully designed, graphically, of all the offerings out there, and they often set the maps at various angles or distort them in creative ways to fit all the different paragraphs of text and illustrations on a page, which sometimes looks a little weird. Because of this, the presentation consists of an introductory section in larger type, with other paragraphs in smaller type which are paired with the other maps and graphics on each two-page spread. In fact, there is almost a 1 to 1 correspondence between the illustrations and the text paragraphs. I found this made the atlas harder to use than the others, since the pages are almost so dense and busy with material that it's almost distracting, but there's no doubt it's the most visually appealing and graphically innovative of all the atlases out there. Their maps are really spectacular, and they use the glossiest paper, so their maps look more attractive.
The DK atlas also provides the best coverage of non-European history, doing a much better job of covering Asia, Africa, South America, and Oceania. The other atlases are more Eurocentric in their focus. Next to the DK, the Hammond atlas provides the best coverage in this regard.
6. The last atlas I wanted to discuss is the Times Atlas of World History. Although now a little dated, having come out almost 10 years ago in 1993, it still counts as one of the mostly scholarly, well-written, and well-illustrated of these works, and it's also intermediate in terms of price. I read somewhere that the more recent Hammond atlas is actually this one updated, but they don't state specifically that the Time atlas was its predecessor, so I can't verify this.
Hope my little "Consumer Reports" comparison guide helps. Good luck and happy atlas shopping, buying, and reading!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


73 of 73 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars An Illustrated History, NOT an Atlas, August 6, 2001
By 
Thomas M. Martin (San Francisco, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
I teach world history and own several world history atlases. Of all the world history atlases that I own, the National Geographic Atlas of World History is the most Eurocentric and least useful. Surprisingly, this is an atlas with many beautiful photographs, but relatively few maps. It reads more like a beautifully illustrated world history text for a middle school or high school student than a serious world history atlas.
If you are shopping for a world history atlas, I would recommend the DK World Atlas, Oxford (Philip's) Atlas of World History, or the paperback Hammond (Times) Concise Atlas of World History. For what it's worth, the now dated 1993 Times Atlas of World History remains the standard by which all one volume world history atlases are judged.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Low on detail; few maps, December 11, 2001
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
I had to get this book, as I love National Geographic feature maps. Once I acquired it, however, I was shocked to discover how few maps are provided by this book. Furthermore, I am usually disappointed by this book when looking for specific events, dates, and locations. Help me recover my dignity as a consumer and buy something else!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine history tome but not really an atlas...., February 20, 2003
By A Customer
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
I give this book four stars because, while it is really not an atlas, it is a wonderful overview of history.
The book features the superb photography/illustrations that folks expect from National Geographic. These graphics are used to good effect, showing the progression from early history to the late 1990's. I find it a most enjoyable "refresher course" in world history. There is a timeline at the top of each page indicating significant events for the given period.
If you wish to have a succinct world history summary/review with great aesthetics, you can't go wrong with this. However, it offers relatively few maps (around 60 or so), so don't depend on it as a true atlas.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful History journey, April 4, 2000
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
The way that one's goes travelling throuh the history with this book is nothing less than outrageous!
The combination of maps and history is so well done that the 1 millon years travel seems a second!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 43 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Historical information in this book was manipulated, November 10, 2004
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
In this book, unfortunately due to powerful anti-Iranian (Persian) activities and the typical incompetence of the Islamic Republic that occupies Iran, the southern states of the Persian Gulf who have only come to existence thanks to foreign powers, have slowly become more brazen. As a result the National Geographic Society has printed at least three major erroneous statements in its Atlas of the World 2005 (Eighth Edition, ISBN: 0-7922-7543-8 & ISBN: 0-7922-7542-x) regarding Iran and the Persian Gulf.

Considering the fact that the National, Geographic is the biggest non-profit educational and scientific institution, it is hard for us to fathom how they made reference to the Persian Gulf with an unrecognized name. The United Nations, in addition to historical records and facts that date back more than thousands of years, have made it abundantly clear that the body of water in question is recognized as the Persian Gulf.

The atlas also falsely claims that several Persian Gulf Islands belong to the newly created United Arab Emirates. It would appear that the National Geographic Society has joined hands with the enemies of Iran, and is now openly helping those who seek to compromise Iran's territorial integrity. Perhaps the National Geographic Society should look back on it's own maps to see that 33 years ago no entity by the name of United Arab Emirates existed, however Iran did. Furthermore, the National Geographic itself had previously always used the formal, and legitimate name, the Persian Gulf to reference the body of water in question. The National Geographic's stance encourages conflict in an area which has experiences relative calm with the use of the official and internationally recognized name of the Persian Gulf for centuries. Iran (Persia) has existed for more then seven thousand years, and to now have a publication attempt to strip it of its historical territory will not be tolerated.

The Atlas goes further to claim that the Persian Gulf Islands are being occupied by Iran. If anything is being occupied, it would be various parts of Iran (Persia) that have been taken from us through illegal means starting 33 years ago.

We condemn the policies of the National Geographic that have made it possible for such illegitimate maps to be published. We look to hear from the National Geographic regarding the blunders they have made on their 2005 Atlas, and urge them to correct these errors, and to apologize to the nation of Iran (Persia) for damaging our national culture and heritage in addition to our territorial integrity.

The enemies of Iran should know, so long as there is one Iranian (Persian) alive with blood pumping through his or her heart, even the thought of taking one grain of Iranian (Persian) soil, will strongly be opposed and defeated.

As a result, the historical information in this book was manipulated.

D. Javidan
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 38 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrible mistake in regards to PERSIAN GOLF ****************, November 21, 2004
By 
This review is from: National Geographic Atlas Of World History (Hardcover)
What the hell is going on... I wonder wich rich royal family in the mid-east has funded this unbeleivable mistake!!!

For your info, The Persian golf has existed for thousands of years up until your 2004 Edition.

What happened ??? Are you taking advantage of the last moments in mullah history before they are overthrown to clinch a deal with the Arabs ?????

I am really disapointed, and did not think that a non-for profit organisation like yours would do such a mistake.

RECALLL All Copies or Face Legal Actions.

Sam

Vancouver Canada
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

National Geographic Atlas Of World History
National Geographic Atlas Of World History by Noel Grove (Hardcover - August 1, 1998)
Used & New from: $0.44
Add to wishlist See buying options
Search these reviews only
Rate and Discover Movies
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.