- Hardcover: 9766 pages
- Publisher: MJF Books (June 1993)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1567310230
- ISBN-13: 978-1567310238
- Product Dimensions: 12 x 10 x 14.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 35.8 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #206,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Story of Civilization (11 Volume Set)
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Top Customer Reviews
The Story of Civilization is brought to life in eleven volumes: (1) Our Oriental Heritage; (2) The Life of Greece; (3) Caesar and Christ; (4) The Age of Faith; (5) The Renaissance; (6) The Reformation; (7) The Age of Reason Begins; (8) The Age of Louis XIV; (9) The Age of Voltaire; (10) Rousseau & Revolution; and (11) The Age of Napoleon.
It will take some time to read through this incredible recount of history, but it is worth it. I was fortunate to purchase the entire set at a chain national bookseller who was discounting the books by over 50%. When I opened the box I was surprised to find an additional bonus book or "twelfth" volume entitled "The Lessons of History."
For the student of history, instead of paying a fortune collecting piecemeal books that cover various historical events and eras, buy this set instead. It is the equivalent of one-stop shopping. This set is a fantastic collection and if you are looking to find an all encompassing treatise of world history, this where to start. You will not be disappointed.
Unprecedented and unparalleled! I rate it at five stars.
Will Durant began his intellectually adventurous life attempting to be a philosopher. He was good at it but he, Like myself, saw the intertwining of history and philosophy. I believe he saw that seeing the greatness of man's record (history) was more valuable and enriching than speculating on what man might be (philosophy). His books exude his philosophical inclinations and are far more enjoyable for optimistic view of man evolving towards greatness through the ages.
Durant paints each historical character has a real human being with the complexities of character we all have. While he doesn't make excuses villains of history he makes sure he humanizes each person mentioned. This is the main constant of the Story of Civilization: Durant sees civilization as a network of real people interacting. His work presents all of recorded history not as chronology and not as a sequence of events but as a progression of people.
The style of the books is conversational and peppered with puns and overall enjoyable to read. He is amazingly concise while still making his points. That being said, he does require that the reader do some work and remember people and events. However, I surmise that it wont require heavy note taking or anything because these books are a fun read.Read more ›
Durant's idea was to write what he called "Integral History," which is basically the history of everything important there is to know about any given era. He explains it early on in the first volume. He wanted to do this for the whole planet's history, and at that level, his view of the world was so clear, and his perspective was accurate enough, to predict more plainly than anyone else of his time that Japan would go to war with America. For that prediction alone, made in book form and available to anyone who would read him, Will Durant belongs among the great historians. Why didn't Washington say, Durant thinks the Japanese will fight us, we'd better staff the lookout better? Karl Popper tells us that the strength of a scientific theory is measured by its predictive power.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Lovely set of books. Arrived with dust jackets on most of them, but not all. Since I really want to READ them, not collect, I was fine. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Such thorough and understandable books written in a way that doesn't make the history seem dull. The hardcovers are beautiful as well and look great on the bookshelf!Published 1 month ago by Gagan Batra
Looking back a half century, I remember, very carefully and methodically, going through this set of Durant's classic description of "Civilization". Read morePublished 6 months ago by R. Oblek
excellent series easy to read; a barrier against the closing of our minds to once ordinary clutural informationPublished 6 months ago by lu32
I was very happy to receive the whole set and very good condition. Very good job.Published 9 months ago by SJF
The books were in wonderful condition! We were so happy with them and the price!Published 9 months ago by Mrs. Latricia Varney
I have long desired this set of books, but could never make room in my budget for the money. I finally was able to buy a used set for around 135 and I was beyond excited to receive... Read morePublished 13 months ago by M. Wilde