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The Western Heritage, Vol. 2: Since 1648, Eighth Edition Paperback – June 30, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0131828612 ISBN-10: 0131828614 Edition: 8th

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 784 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall; 8 edition (June 30, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131828614
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131828612
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1.1 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,837,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

DONLAD KAGAN is Sterling Professor of History and Classics at Yale University, where he has taught once 1969. He received the A.B. degree in history from Brooklyn College, the M.A. in classics from Brown University, and the Ph.D. in history from Ohio State University. During 1958-1959 he studied at the American School of Classical Studies as a Fulbright Scholar. He has received three awards for undergraduate teaching at Cornell and Yale. He is the author of a history of Greek political thought, The Great Dialogue (1965); a four-volume history of the Peloponnesian war, The Origins of the Peloponnesian War (1969); The Archidamian War (1974); The Peace of Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition (1981); The Fall of the Athenian Empire (1987); and a biography of Pericles, Pericles of Athens and the Birth of Democracy (1991 ); On the Origins of War (1995), and The Peloponnesian War (2003). He is coauthor, with Frederick W. Kagan, of While America Sleeps (2000). With Brian Tierney and L. Pearce Williams, he is the editor of Great Issues in Western Civilization, a collection of readings. He was awarded the National Humanities Medal for 2002.

STEVEN OZMENT is McLean Professor of Ancient and Modern History at Harvard University. He has taught Western Civilization at Yale, Stanford, and Harvard. He is the author of nine books. The Age of Reform, 1250-1550 (1980) won the Schaff Prize and was nominated for the 1981 National Book Award. Five of his books have been selections of the History Book Club: Magdalena and Balthasar: An Intimate Portrait of Life in Sixteenth Century Europe (1986), Three Behaim Boys: Growing Up in Early Modern Germany (1990), Protestants: The Birth of a Revolution (1992), The Burgermeister's Daughter: Scandal in a Sixteenth Century German Town (1999), and Flesh and Spirit: Private Life in Early Modern Germany (1999). His most recent book is Ancestors: The Loving Family of Old Europe (2001 ). A history of Germany, A Mighty Fortress: A New History of the German People, will be published in January 2004.

FRANK M. TURNER is John Hay Whitney Professor of History at Yale University, where he served as University Provost from 1988 to 1992. He received his B.A. degree at the College of William and Mary and his Ph.D. from Yale. He has received the Yale College Award for Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching. He has directed a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute. His scholarly research has received the support of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Guggenheim Foundation and the Woodrow Wilson Center. He is the author of Between Science and Religion: The Reaction to Scientific Naturalism in Late Victorian England (1974), The Greek Heritage in Victorian Britain (1981), which received the British Council Prize of the Conference on British Studies and the Yale Press Governors Award, Contesting Cultural Authority: Essays in Victorian Intellectual Life (1993), and John Henry Newman: The Challenge to Evangelical Religion (2002). He has also contributed numerous articles to journals and has served on the editorial advisory boards of The Journal of Modern History, Isis, and Victorian Studies. He edited The Idea of a University, by John Henry Newman (1996). Since 1996 he has served as a Trustee of Connecticut College.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

The heritage of Western civilization is a major point of departure for understanding the twenty-first century. The unprecedented globalization of daily life that is a hallmark of our era has occurred in large measure through the spread of Western technological, economic, and political influences. From the sixteenth century onwards, the West has exerted vast influences throughout the globe for both good and ill, and today's global citizens live in the wake of that impact. It is the goal of this book to introduce its readers to the Western heritage, so that they may be better informed and more culturally sensitive citizens of the emerging global age.

The attacks upon the mainland of the United States on September 11, 2001 and the events that have succeeded those attacks have concentrated the attention of teachers, students, and informed citizens upon the heritage and future of Western civilization as have no other events since the end of World War II. Whereas previously commentary about global civilization involved analysis of the spread of Western economic, technological, and political influences, such commentary now requires us to explain how the West has defined itself over many centuries and to think about how the West will articulate its core values as it confronts new and daunting challenges.

Twenty years ago, the West defined itself mainly in terms of the East-West tensions associated with the Cold War. The West is now in the process of defining itself in terms of global rivalries arising from conflict with political groups that are not identical with nation states and that define themselves in terms of opposition to what they understand the West to be. We have thus entered a new era in which citizens of the West need to understand how their culture, values, economy, and political outlooks have emerged. They cannot leave it to those who would attack the West to define Western civilization or to articulate its values.

Since The Western Heritage first appeared, we have sought to provide our readers with a work that does justice to the richness and variety of Western civilization. We hope that such an understanding of the West will foster lively debate about its character, values, institutions, and global influence. Indeed, we believe such a critical outlook on their own culture has characterized the peoples of the West since its earliest history. Through such debates we define ourselves and the values of our culture. Consequently, we welcome the debate and hope that The Western Heritage, eighth edition, can help foster a genuinely informed discussion through its overview of Western civilization, the West's strengths and weaknesses, and the controversies surrounding Western history.

Human beings make, experience, and record their history. In this edition as in past editions, our goal has been to present Western civilization fairly, accurately, and in a way that does justice to its great variety of human enterprise. History has many facets, no one of which alone can account for the others. Any attempt to tell the story of the West from a single overarching perspective, no matter how timely, is bound to neglect or suppress some important parts of that story. Like all authors of introductory texts, we have had to make choices, but we have attempted to provide the broadest possible introduction to Western civilization. To that end we hope that the many documents included in this book will allow the widest possible spectrum of people to give personal voice to their experiences over the centuries and will enable our readers to share that experience.

We also believe that any book addressing the experience of the West must also look beyond its historical European borders. Students reading this book come from a wide variety of cultures and experiences. They live in a world of highly interconnected economies and instant communication between cultures. In this emerging multicultural society it seems both appropriate and necessary to recognize how Western civilization has throughout its history interacted with other cultures, both influencing and being influenced by them. Examples of this two-way interaction, such as that with Islam, appear throughout the text. To further highlight the theme of cultural interaction, The Western Heritage includes a series of comparative essays, The West & the World. (For a fuller description, see below.)

Goals of the Text

Our primary goal has been to present a strong, clear, narrative account of the central developments in Western history. We have also sought to call attention to certain critical themes:

  • The capacity of Western civilization from the time of the Greeks to the present to transform itself through self-criticism.
  • The development in the West of political freedom, constitutional government, and concern for the rule of law and individual rights.
  • The shifting relations among religion, society, and the state.
  • The development of science and technology and their expanding impact on Western thought, social institutions, and everyday life.
  • The major religious and intellectual currents that have shaped Western culture.

We believe that these themes have been fundamental in Western civilization, shaping the past and exerting a continuing influence on the present.

Flexible Presentation. The Western Heritage, eighth edition, is designed to accommodate a variety of approaches to a course in Western civilization, allowing teachers to stress what is most important to them. Some teachers will ask students to read all the chapters. Others will select among them to reinforce assigned readings and lectures.

Integrated Social, Cultural, and Political History. The Western Heritage provides one of the richest accounts of the social history of the West available today, with strong coverage of family life, the changing roles of women, and the place of the family in relation to broader economic, political, and social developments. This coverage reflects the explosive growth in social historical research in the past three decades, which has enriched virtually all areas of historical study. In this edition we have again expanded both the breadth and depth of our coverage of social history through revisions of existing chapters, the addition of major new material and a new feature, Encountering the Past (see following), and the inclusion of new documents.

While strongly believing in the study of the social experience of the West, we also share the conviction that internal and external political events have shaped the Western experience in fundamental and powerful ways. The experiences of Europeans in the twentieth century under fascism, national socialism, and communism demonstrate that influence, as has, more recently, the collapse of communism in the former Soviet Union and eastern Europe. We have also been told repeatedly by teachers that no matter what their own historical specialization, they believe that a political narrative gives students an effective tool to begin to understand the past. Consequently, we have sought to integrate the political with the social, cultural, and intellectual.

No other survey text presents so full an account of the religious and intellectual development of the West. People may be political and social beings, but they are also reasoning and spiritual beings. What they think and believe are among the most important things we can know about them. Their ideas about God, society, law, gender, human nature, and the physical world have changed over the centuries and continue to change. We cannot fully grasp our own approach to the world without understanding the intellectual currents of the past and how they influenced our thoughts and conceptual categories.

Clarity and Accessibility. Good narrative history requires clear, vigorous prose. As in earlier editions, we have paid careful attention to our writing, subjecting every paragraph to critical scrutiny. Our goal was to make the history of the West accessible to students without compromising vocabulary or conceptual level. We hope this effort will benefit both teachers and students.

The Eighth Edition

Encountering the Past. As an important new feature of the eighth edition, each chapter now includes an essay on a significant issue of everyday life or popular culture. These essays explore a variety of subjects from ancient athletics and religious festivals to medieval games and diets to attitudes toward bathing and smoking in early modern Europe to the politics of rock music in the late twentieth century. These thirty-one essays, each of which includes an illustration and study questions, expand The Western Heritage's rich coverage of social history. (See p. xxiii for a complete list of the Encountering the Past essays.)

Art & The West. In every chapter we highlight a work of art or architecture and discuss how it illuminates and reflects the artistic heritage of the West and the period in which the work was created. In Chapter 5, for example, a portrait of a young woman on the wall of a house in Pompeii and the accompanying essay provide a glimpse into the life of well-to-do women in the Roman Empire (p. 185/. In Chapter 11, the discussion of Lucas Cranach's wedding portraits of Martin Luther and his wife Katherine von Bora sheds light on a remarkable marriage in the age of the Reformation (p. 387/. In Chapter 16, paintings by Jean Baptiste Chardin and Elizabeth Vig…e-Lebrun illustrate domestic life and gender roles in eighteenth- century France (p. 548). In Chapters 30 and 31, paintings by the Soviet realist Tatjiana Yablonskaya and Jackson Pollock (pp. 1082-1083) and contemporary works by the British sculptor Rachel Whiteread /p. 1114) offer starkly contrasting comments on twentieth-century culture. Each essay includes questions for study and discussion. (See p. xxiv for a complete list of Art & The West essays.)

The West & The Wo...

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Carmen F. Zaccardi on July 8, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This text provides a comprehensive and fairly detailed examination of Western civilization and culture from 1648 to the end of the 20th century. A useful tool for the general student interested in a general overview.
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