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A Political History of the World

Three Thousand Years of War and Peace
Narrated by: Roy McMillan
Length: 15 hrs and 5 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (20 ratings)
Regular price: £23.99
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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of A Political History of the World by Jonathan Holslag, read by Roy McMillan. 

In 3,000 years of history, China has spent at least 11 centuries at war. The Roman Empire was in conflict during at least 50 percent of its lifetime. Since 1776, the United States has spent over 100 years at war. The dream of peace has been universal in the history of humanity. So why have we so rarely been able to achieve it? 

In A Political History of the World, Jonathan Holslag has produced a sweeping history of the world, from the Iron Age to the present, that investigates the causes of conflict between empires, nations and peoples and the attempts at diplomacy and cosmopolitanism. A bird's-eye view of 3,000 years of history, the book illuminates the forces shaping world politics from ancient Egypt to the Han Dynasty, the Pax Romana to the rise of Islam, the Peace of Westphalia to the creation of the United Nations.

This truly global approach enables Holslag to search for patterns across different eras and regions and explore larger questions about war, diplomacy, and power. Has trade fostered peace? What are the limits of diplomacy? How does environmental change affect stability? Is war a universal sin of power? At a time when the threat of nuclear war looms again, this is a much-needed history intended for students of international politics and anyone looking for a background on current events.

©2018 Jonathan Holslag (P)2018 Penguin Books Ltd

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Concise summary of war and peace throughout history

A great deal of information packed into this audiobook, and we learn about many conflicts and how they came about. But the author never considers the decline of war and violence, as documented by Steven Pinker.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic

Does exactly what it says on the tin. If like me, you had a patchy knowledge of how current geo-politics came to pass, then this will fill a lot of gaps.

Prepare to be left with the feeling that we humans are hard wired for power hierarchy, bloodshed and folly.

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Sorta

left wanting after finishing this, lots of wee bits of info throughout but could be longer for sure.