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A Little History of the World

A Little History of the World

A Little History of the World

作    者
E. H. Gombrich; Clifford Harper;  
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所属分类
出版社
Yale University Press
ISBN-13
9780300143324
ISBN-10
030014332X
出版日期
2008-10
页数
284
单位
尺寸
3.4 * 21.2 * 13.8
装帧
Paperback
版本

Product Description

In 1935, with a doctorate in art history and no prospect of a job, the 26-year-old Ernst Gombrich was invited to attempt a history of the world for younger readers. Amazingly, he completed the task in an intense six weeks, and "Eine kurze Weltgeschichte fur junge Leser" was published in Vienna to immediate success, and is now available in twenty-five languages across the world. In forty concise chapters, Gombrich tells the story of man from the stone age to the atomic bomb. In between emerges a colourful picture of wars and conquests, grand works of art, and the spread and limitations of science. This is a text dominated not by dates and facts, but by the sweep of mankind's experience across the centuries, a guide to humanity's achievements and an acute witness to its frailties.The product of a generous and humane sensibility, this timeless account makes intelligible the full span of human history.

About the Author

Among E. H. Gombrich's many writings are the international bestsellers The Story of Art and Art and Illusion. He was director of the Warburg Institute of the University of London from 1959 to 1976.

Review

"A remarkable book, written in an amiable, conversational style, effortlessly explaining, without condescension, difficult matters like the achievements of Charlemagne, the monetary system of medieval Europe and the ideas of the Enlightenment. . . . This resurrected history deserves reading for all its delights."—Edward Rothstein, New York Times
(Edward Rothstein New York Times 20051125)

"In simple, vivid prose, Gombrich surveys the human past from pre-history to his own time. . . . Lucky children will have this book read to them. Intelligent adults will read it for themselves and regain contact with the spirit of European humanism at its best."—Anthony Grafton, Wall Street Journal
(Anthony Grafton Wall Street Journal 20051212)

"A masterpiece of nonfiction writing for children. It is a wry and charming book, perfectly suited to the capacities of a 10-year-old, but also remarkably free of condescension. An adult can read it with pleasure. And, indeed, with instruction."—Scott McLemee, Newsday
 

(Scott McLemee Newsday 20060310)

"A brilliant piece of narrative, splendidly organised, told with an energy and confidence that are enormously attractive, and suffused with all the humanity and generosity of spirit that Gombrich''s thousands of admirers came to cherish during his long and richly productive life. It''s a wonderful surprise: irresistible, in fact."—Philip Pullman
(Philip Pullman 20081001)

"[A] lively and involving history. . . . Superbly designed and freshly illustrated, this is a book to be savored and collected. . . . This is a text dominated not by dates and facts, but by the sweep of mankind’s experience across the centuries, a guide to humanity’s achievements and an acute witness to its frailties. The product of a generous and humane sensibility, this timeless account makes intelligible the full span of human history."—Artdaily


(Artdaily 20081001)

"A timeless and engaging narrative of the human race."—Choice
(Choice 20081023)

“The true fairy tale of the evolution of mankind.”—Die Zeit

(Die Zeit 20100117)

"... the main body of the book retains an irresistible, boyish energy and enthusiasm... Here, in this little book, are answers to many of the questions you never dared to ask."—Margaret Drabble, New Statesman
(Margaret Drabble New Statesman )

“Though written for kids, this is a book the whole family will love.”—Christy Karras, Salt Lake Tribune (Best Books of 2005)
(Christy Karras Salt Lake Tribune )

"... ostensibly a book for children, designed to present a chronology of world history, but it''s a delight for all ages. The pages sparkle with the learned author''s wit and wisdom - and reading them, one feels as if Gombrich, one of the greatest ever art historians, is guiding one through time with a grandfatherly gleam in his eye."---Ben Schott, The Observer
(Ben Schott The Observer )

''...an enduring joy... We have no shortage of historians eager to tell us what was important in the past and why; but few of them dare speak straight to the imagination of young people, to open their minds and to enrich their vision in the manner that Gombrich achieves so effortlessly here.'' - Peter Furtado, Times Higher Education Supplement
(Peter Furtado Times Higher Education Supplement )

"A charming read that extends from prehistory to nuclear warfare and can be enjoyed also by adults in search of an instructive overview of the human drama."—First Things
(First Things )

"Gombrich accomplishes what many university-level Western Civilization classes cannot—a riveting account of events that shaped the world from the Stone Age to the 1930s, illustrating the relevance of history to current events. Teachers and schools should add this to their reading lists."—Claire Martin, The Denver Post
 
(Claire Martin The Denver Post )

"It is history to read aloud, on a cold evening, preferably by a fire."—Susan Salter Reynolds, Los Angeles Times
(Susan Salter Reynolds Los Angeles Times )

"A beautifully concise volume [that] will remind readers of any age that the past 5,000 years have been one big slugfest between darkness and enlightenment, unreason and reason."—Mary Ann Gwinn, Seattle Times
(Mary Ann Gwinn Seattle Times )

"Magical, transporting. . . . A children''s history that adults will want to sneak off with and read on the sly."—VeryShortList.com
(VeryShortList.com )

‘What was the bestselling title this Christmas at Foyles in London? Hilary Mantel’s Man Booker Prize-winning Wolf Hall? Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo? Cormac McCarthy’s The Road? Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol? No. It was EH Gombrich’s A Little History of the World.’
(Mark Sanderson The Sunday Telegraph )

From AudioFile

First published in 1935 and revised before its re-release and translation in 2005, this charming survey of world history was originally written with older children in mind. But curious adults looking to brush up on the subject will find much to admire in its simplified narrative of Western Civilization's main plot line, from prehistory through WWII. British narrator Ralph Cosham is a perfect choice for this material. His tone and rhythm render Gombrich's clear, humane text in a warm and compelling reading. Translated from German, A LITTLE HISTORY OF THE WORLD offers a largely Euro-centric view of history, but it's a useful and entertaining overview, and Cosham's presentation compounds the pleasure. M.G. © AudioFile 2006, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. This is an unusual work for Yale: a children's history originally published 70 years ago. But it is a work one can quickly come to love. Gombrich, later known as an art historian, wrote this primer in 1935, when he was a young man in Vienna (it was soon banned by the Nazis as too "pacifist"). Rewritten (and updated) in English mainly by Gombrich himself (who died in 2001, age 92, while working on it), the book is still aimed at children, as the language makes clear: "Then, slowly the clouds parted to reveal the starry night of the Middle Ages." But while he addresses his readers directly at times, Gombrich never talks down to them. Using vivid imagery, storytelling and sly humor, he brings history to life in a way that adults as well as children can appreciate.The book displays a breadth of knowledge, as Gombrich begins with prehistoric man and ends with the close of WWII. In the final, newly added chapter, Gombrich's tone sadly darkens as he relates the rise of Hitler and his own escape from the Holocaust—children, he writes, "must learn from history how easy it is for human beings to be transformed into inhuman beings"—and ends on a note of cautious optimism about humanity's future. (Oct. 13)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

This is the first English translation of a book written in 1935 in German and translated into 18 languages. Thirty years later, a second German edition was published with a new final chapter. In 40 brief chapters, Gombrich relates the history of humankind from the Stone Age through World War II. In between are historic accounts of such topics as cave people and their inventions (including speech), ancient life along the Nile and in Mesopotamia and Greece, the growth of religion, the Dark Ages, the age of chivalry, the New World, and the Thirty Years' War. Much of this history is told through concise sketches of such figures as Confucius, Alexander the Great, Hannibal, Jesus Christ, Charlemagne, Leonardo da Vinci, Napoleon, and Columbus. Gombrich was asked to write a history geared to younger readers, so the book is filled with innumerable dates and facts, yet it is one to be read by adults. With 41 black-and-white woodcut illustrations and nine maps, it is a timeless and engaging narrative of the human race. George Cohen
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Publisher

The international bestseller available in English for the first time...

A Remembrance from Leonie Gombrich:

My grandfather Ernst Gombrich did not usually write for children. Nor did he study history at university: art history was his subject. He was therefore delighted and astonished in almost equal degree that his very first book, Eine kurze Weltgeschichte für junge Leser, should have endured so long and found so many friends all over the world.

He wrote it as a young man and in a considerable rush, and later considered that both these factors contributed to its long lived appeal. For this little book would never have been written at all were it not for the unusual circumstances that presented themselves in Vienna in 1935.

When the book came out, in 1936, it was very well received, reviewers assuming that my grandfather must be an experienced teacher. Though publication was stopped by the Nazis—because they considered the outlook "too pacifist "—it was reissued thirty years later. My grandfather added a new final chapter—and was once again delighted by the book’s success, and the many translations that have followed.

"I want to stress," he wrote, in his preface to the Turkish edition a few years ago, "that this book is not, and never was, intended to replace any textbooks of history that may serve a very different purpose at school. I would like my readers to relax, and to follow the story without having to take notes or to memorise names and dates. In fact, I promise that I shall not examine them on what they have read." --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Author

A Remembrance from Leonie Gombrich:

My grandfather Ernst Gombrich did not usually write for children. Nor did he study history at university: art history was his subject. He was therefore delighted and astonished in almost equal degree that his very first book, Eine kurze Weltgeschichte für junge Leser, should have endured so long and found so many friends all over the world.

He wrote it as a young man and in a considerable rush, and later considered that both these factors contributed to its long lived appeal. For this little book would never have been written at all were it not for the unusual circumstances that presented themselves in Vienna in 1935.

When the book came out, in 1936, it was very well received, reviewers assuming that my grandfather must be an experienced teacher. Though publication was stopped by the Nazis—because they considered the outlook "too pacifist"—it was reissued thirty years later. My grandfather added a new final chapter—and was once again delighted by the book’s success, and the many translations that have followed.

"I want to stress," he wrote, in his preface to the Turkish edition a few years ago, "that this book is not, and never was, intended to replace any textbooks of history that may serve a very different purpose at school. I would like my readers to relax, and to follow the story without having to take notes or to memorise names and dates. In fact, I promise that I shall not examine them on what they have read." --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.