In this illuminating and thoughtful book, Will and Ariel Durant have succeeded in distilling for the reader the accumulated store of knowledge and experience from their four decades of work on the ten monumental volumes of The Story of Civilization. The result is a survey of human history, full of dazzling insights into the nature of human experience, the evolution of civilization, the culture of man. With the completion of their life's work they look back and ask what history has to say about the nature, the ...
In this illuminating and thoughtful book, Will and Ariel Durant have succeeded in distilling for the reader the accumulated store of knowledge and experience from their four decades of work on the ten monumental volumes of The Story of Civilization. The result is a survey of human history, full of dazzling insights into the nature of human experience, the evolution of civilization, the culture of man. With the completion of their life's work they look back and ask what history has to say about the nature, the conduct and the prospects of man, seeking in the great lives, the great ideas, the great events of the past for the meaning of man's long journey through war, conquest and creation -- and for the great themes that can help us to understand our own era.
To the Durants, history is "not merely a warning reminder of man's follies and crimes, but also an encouraging remembrance of generative souls...a spacious country of the mind, wherein a thousand saints, statesmen, inventors, scientists, poets, artists, musicians, lovers, and philosophers still live and speak, teach and carve and sing...."
Designed to accompany the ten-volume set of The Story of Civilization, The Lessons of History is, in its own right, a profound and original work of history and philosophy.
This series of 13 essays on the themes and underlying lessons of history was originally written as part of the authors' 11-volume The Story of Civilization 1935-75. The Durants begin by summarizing periods and trends in history. They examine morals and draw conclusions by looking into changes in economics, politics, military customs, and even geographic location. Russ Holcomb reads these essays in a clear, pleasant voice, bringing life and interest to this brief overview of 5000 years of history. For general collections.-Miriam Kahn, Columbus, Ohio
From the Publisher
"The Durants' masterpiece belongs in any home library and occupies a shelf in many."
—Dana D. Kelley, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
The late Pulitzer Prize-winning historians Will and Ariel Durant (The Story of Civilization) first published this exploration into the history of humankind and civilization in 1968. In this expanded audio edition (accompanied by an S. & S. paperback reissue), chapters are interspersed with archival recordings of the husband and wife further explaining their vast findings, many of which remain relevant today. Actor/director/narrator Grover Gardner (grovergardner.blogspot.com) presents this often dense material in a distinct, accessible manner. As the Durants examine history from a range of perspectives—including race, character, and religion—Lessons verges into political incorrectness at times, but this is understandable, considering its publication date. This expanded edition, winner of Publishers Weekly's Listen Up Award, is recommended for listeners with a serious interest in history and philosophy. It is especially valuable for its incorporation of commentary from the authors, who both died in 1981.—Risa Getman, Hendrick Hudson Free Lib., Montrose, NY
Will Durant (1885–1981) was awarded the Pulitzer Prize (1968) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1977). He spent more than fifty years writing his critically acclaimed eleven-volume series, The Story of Civilization (the later volumes written in conjunction with his wife, Ariel). A champion of human rights issues, such as the brotherhood of man and social reform, long before such issues were popular, Durant’s writing still educates and entertains readers around the world.
Will and Ariel Durant, after spending over fifty years completing the critically acclaimed series The Story of Civilization, were awarded the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction in 1968. In 1977, the Durants were presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Champions of human rights and social reform, the Durants continue to educate and entertain readers the world over. For more information on their work, visit www.willdurant.com.
II. History and the Earth
III. Biology and History
IV. Race and History
V. Character and History
VI. Morals and History
VII. Religion and History
VIII. Economics and History
IX. Socialism and History
X. Government and History
XI. History and War
XII. Growth and Decay
XIII. Is Progress Real?