A History of Civilizations by Fernand Braudel

By Fernand Braudel

Refreshingly broad-brush in its approach...this historical past presents the large picture."—The Christian technology display screen. Written from a consciously anti-enthnocentric method, this attention-grabbing paintings is a survey of the civilizations of the trendy global when it comes to the vast sweep and continuities of historical past, instead of the "event-based" means of so much different texts.

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One can hope Your curriculum First, mediate The is to understand offers three such it better first a variety of means. methods. the present can partly be understood past. In this brief by by reference to the look backwards, history has an easy im- task. part of your course, therefore, covers the dramatic and often brutal days and years that the world has experienced since the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914, and continuing to the present time. These upheavals have shaken and shaped the twentieth century, and in countless ways they affect our lives still.

This early history part of the course. background To — long-distance history — forms study the great civilizations to the present means stepping aside as the second an explanatory from the headlong Introduction: History and the Present Day xxxvii rush of history since 1914. It invites us to reflect on history with a slower pulse-rate, history in the longer term. Civilizations are extraordinary creatures, whose longevity passes all understanding. Fabulously ancient, they live on in each of us; and they will still on after we have passed away.

Such . it societies in have managed to various forms of establish within much machines - and much greater we have societies that work like disorder, much less entropv. in relations between For . imbalance which they use to produce both order - Lcvi-Strauss, egalitarian . were, expressed primitive relations cultures are the fruit of between groups are settled and remain constant, whereas civilizations are societies, once and for then, where greater people. all based on hierarchical societies with wide gaps between groups and hence shifting tensions, social conflicts, political struggles, and continual evolution.

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