- Paperback: 640 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press; New Ed edition (December 10, 1987)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0195050800
- ISBN-13: 978-0195050806
- Product Dimensions: 8 x 1.2 x 5.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 50 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #402,151 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Study of History, Vol. 1: Abridgement of Volumes I-VI New Ed Edition
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"Of all the books published so far in this century, the one most assured of being read a hundred years from now is A Study of History."--Clifton Fadiman
"Somervell has performed his chosen task--a labor of love--extremely well....A remarkable achievement."--The New York Times Book Review
"Somervell's abridgement is an amazingly accurate version of the original."--New York Herald Tribune
"If...[you] have time for only one book during this year--and the next and the next--Somervell's abridgement of Toynbee's Study of History should be that book."--The Nation
"A veritable masterpiece of erudition and one of the most suggestive, stimulating and inspiring studies of this age."--Los Angeles Times
From the Back Cover
Of Somervell's work, Toynbee wrote, 'The reader now has at his command a uniform abridgement of the whole book, made by a clear mind that has not only mastered the contents but has entered into the writer's outlook and purpose.'
Top customer reviews
The work itself is brilliant. This book has stimulated me more than any I've read in months (and I read about a book a week). I know that Toynbee's theories are deprecated by modern historians, but they make sense to me. Anyway, I wonder how much of that prejudice is due to political and ideological leanings in most university social science departments, at least here in the US. Toynbee was unashamedly Christian and had some extremely disparaging things to say about Karl Marx. In my experience, that is enough to get you blackballed in some academic circles.
The real reason to read Toynbee, though, is not his impact (or lack thereof) on the historical discipline. His real contribution has been on six decades of fiction, particularly speculative fiction. It is hard to overstate how much he influenced Isac Asimov, Arther C. Clarke, Pohl Anderson, and hundreds of others up to the present day. Now that I have just read Toynbee and received the ideas from the source, it gives me a new depth of appreciation for these authors.