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Western Civilization, Comprehensive Volume (with InfoTrac) (Chapters 1-29) Hardcover – January 1, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0534600068 ISBN-10: 0534600069 Edition: 5th

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 960 pages
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning; 5 edition (January 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0534600069
  • ISBN-13: 978-0534600068
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 8.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #153,691 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The faculty who adopted Spielvogel ... did so because the text read clearly and told a coherent story of historical change and development. Students comment that the text is well written, clearly organized, and interesting. Chapter titles and major headings mark chronological and thematic connections but place greatest emphasis on the conceptual development. ... National histories are mentioned but do not dominate; and art, literature, and music are not ignored. ... The special features are one of the greatest strengths of Spielvogel."

"The chronologies, timelines, and boxed documents all add greatly to the overall quality of the text. My students would be lost without them. ... I like this text and expect to continue to use it for the next several years."

"The Spielvogel text does a good job of communicating with students. The vocabulary ... is not too difficult, and the literary style is almost conversational."

"Dr. Spielvogel's lucid prose, apt illustrations, and excellent maps make his a text for which I find it difficult to imagine finding a close rival. ... The coherence resulting from its being a single-author text is valuable in a general education course. ... It is a very impressive textbook and the author and publisher alike ought to take great pride in their work. ... I would not only consider adopting Jackson J. Spielvogel's WESTERN CIVILIZATION text, but would, furthermore, actively lobby for its adoption for use at our university. A wealth of information in keeping with the scholarship at our disposal is presented in an appealing format. Never sacrificing well-written content, the text appeals to a generation reared on media in living color."

About the Author

Jackson J. Spielvogel is associate professor emeritus of history at The Pennsylvania State University. He received his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University, where he specialized in Reformation history under Harold J. Grimm. His articles and reviews have appeared in journals such as MOREANA, JOURNAL OF GENERAL EDUCATION, CATHOLIC HISTORICAL REVIEW, ARCHIV FÜR REFORMATIONSGESCHICHTE, and AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW. He also has contributed chapters or articles to THE SOCIAL HISTORY OF REFORMATION, THE HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE: A DICTIONARY HANDBOOK, SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER ANNUAL OF HOLOCAUST STUDIES, and UTOPIAN STUDIES. His work has been supported by fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation and the Foundation for Reformation Research. At Penn State he helped inaugurate the Western Civilization course, as well as a popular course on Nazi Germany. His book HITLER AND NAZI GERMANY was published in 1987 (Sixth Edition, 2010). He is the author of WESTERN CIVILIZATION, first published in 1991 (Eighth Edition, 2012) and is the co-author (with William Duiker) of WORLD HISTORY, first published in January 1994 (Seventh Edition, 2013). Professor Spielvogel has won five major university-wide teaching awards. During the year 1988-1989, he held the Penn State Teaching Fellowship, the university's most prestigious teaching award. In 1996, he won the Dean Arthur Ray Warnock Award for Outstanding Faculty member, and in 2000 received the Schreyer Honors College Excellence in Teaching Award.

Customer Reviews

The copy we purchased is in great shape.
laurie
I highly recommend this book for both CLEP exams (West Civ 1 and 2) and for an overall good study guide to Western Civilization as a whole.
Dwight
On the down side, the book is a very thick and heavy book, but history is massive.
Barbara

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

63 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Janice Campbell on June 2, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I purchased my first copy of this text several years from a college bookstore, not for a class, but because I picked it up, began browsing, and couldn't bear to put it down. Although textbooks are not usually written for pleasure reading, I've found Spielvogel's book to be truly well-written and efficiently designed. Maps, chronologies (timelines), and numerous illustrations and sidebars make the text inviting and accessible.

One of my favorite features is the inclusion of excerpts from original source documents. It's fascinating to read the writings of a medieval merchant of Paris on the subject of marriage, or excerpts from the court record of the trial of Joan of Arc. It provides a vivid, memorable glimpse of life in a different place and time.

I used this textbook to prepare for the Western Civilization CLEP, and I passed with no difficulty at all, earning 6 credits toward my bachelor's degree. Western Civ is a huge topic, and Dr. Spielvogel has done a terrific job of making it not only accessible, but enjoyable. I recommend this book!
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By G. Mccaskey on February 8, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Professor Emeritus Spielvogel has a unique teaching style that makes history interesting and captivating. This style is mirrored in this book. The text is enhanced by many diagrams, maps and charts. An annotated suggested reading list at the end of each chapter provides its readers with a strong base from which one can begin further research. "Western Civilization" is a very flexible book; it can be used on either the High School or College level and can easily be divided into different themes. If your purposes lead you to non-western areas of history, then try Spielvogel's "World History", co-author by Professor Emeritus William J. Duiker.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I have 3rd edition set, and took Western Civ II with Dr. Spielvogel at Penn State. His teaching and his book are by far the best history instruction (or any instruction) I've ever had. A brilliant educator and writer, this text is definately the one you want for any course on Western Civ. Spielvogel includes "Day in the Life" sidebars, as well as the opposing point of view (e.g. the Crusaders in Muslim Eyes, an account of a Muslim's viewpoint).
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Hugh Roth on March 27, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Book is well designed; choice of content is good. Historical selections are given a tan background which is dark enough to make the text more difficult to read than it might be. This also could be 'old' eyes. Book seems well copy-edited for textual errors. The long lists of primary and secondary sources seems to be a 'feature' of history texts these days. Rather intimidating, particularly for the beginning history student. A shorter list might be more helpful and appropriate. Problems:
If you cannot pronounce a word, you cannot learn it. Some of this may be due to my 'studying at home', but even the student who attends a regular class will be left at a loss on how to pronounce many, many words. More help is needed.
The ancilliary materials, Map Workbook and Original Document Workbook, are not up to the level of the main text. The Map Workbook uses muddy, black and white versions of the colored text maps, and answer some of their own questions, while some of the cities which the student is asked to identify are 'off the map'. The Original Document workbook is a joke. Few selections, 18pt type, lots of white space, typos, layout poor at times. Junk.
There are numerous instances in the main text of clumsy English. One example will have to do:
P.160 "Although the cultural and social developments of the Early Empire were similar to those of the last century of the Republic, there were also significant changes as a result of the new imperial order."
Are they similar or are they different? 'Developments' is the wrong word. 'Also' is a junk word. 'There were significant changes' is weak (intransitive). Better:
"Although some cultural and social features of the Early Empire were similar to those of the last century of the Republic, the new imperial order brought significant changes." Good transition sentence. -17% word count from original.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. Amaro on September 27, 2008
Format: Paperback
This was a great buy. I don't know if it was the wording or what it is but, I find this book really easy to understand and retain information.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sappho on March 28, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book has made history my favorite subject among all my classes. It's always the work that I get done first because I know that working through the material will be so pleasurable that I'll do it quickly. I'm very fortunate that my history teacher chose this as our textbook.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 5, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is the best book for Western Civ Study. It is ideal for AP European History classes as well as College Western Civ classes. I highly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Patrick E. Vestal on March 29, 2007
Format: Paperback
Western Civilization: Required text for a Central Texas College course. Book is small text and takes some time to read, but the author does an interesting job of presenting the information. I am now in the second week of class and have only read the first 3 chapters, but was worth the purchase.

Recommendation: Worth buying if you'd like a good introduction to Western Civilization.
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More About the Author

Jackson J. Spielvogel is associate professor emeritus of history at The Pennsylvania State University. He received his Ph.D. in 2005. He is the co-author (with William Duiker) of WORLD HISTORY, first published in January 1994 (Sixth Edition, 2010).

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