World History in Brief: Major Patterns of Change and Continuity, Volume 1 (To 1450) / Edition 7

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With its brief, global (rather than West-centered) approach, World History in Brief, Seventh Edition, shows how different civilizations developed in a global context.

Rather than overwhelm students with minutia, the primary goal of World History in Brief is to present the big picture by highlighting the major developments in world history. The text emphasizes the global interactions among major civilizations, enabling students to compare and assess changes in the patterns of interaction and the impact of global forces, such as migration and technological exchange. The compact size of this text allows instructors to take advantage of supplementary readings in their courses.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205709748
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 10/15/2009
  • Series: MyHistoryLab Series
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 7
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter N. Stearns is Provost and Professor of History at George Mason University. He has taught previously at Harvard, the University of Chicago, Rutgers, and Carnegie Mellon; he was educated at Harvard University. He has published widely in modern social history, including the history of emotions, and in world history. Representative works in world history include World History: A Survey, The Industrial Revolution in World History, Gender in World History, Consumerism in

World History, and Growing Up: The History of Childhood in Global Context. His publications in social history include Old Age in Preindustrial Society, Anxious Parents: A History of Modern American Childrearing, American Cool: Developing the Twentieth-Century Emotional Style, Fat History: Bodies and Beauty in Western Society, American Fear: The Causes and Consequences of High Anxiety, Revolutions in Sorrow: A History of American Experiences and Policies Toward Death in Global Context, From Alienation to Addiction: Modern American Work in Global Historical Perspective, and Educating Global Citizens in Colleges and Universities: Challenges and Opportunities. While under Dr. Stearns’s leadership, George Mason University was awarded the 2006 Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education. He has also edited encyclopedias of world and social history, and since 1967 has served as editor-in-chief of The Journal of Social History.

In most of his research and writing, Dr. Stearns pursues three main goals. As a social historian he is eager to explore aspects of the human experience that are not generally thought of in historical terms, and with attention to ordinary people as well as elites. Second, he seeks to use an understanding of historical change and continuity to explore patterns of behavior and social issues. Finally he is concerned with connecting new historical research with wider audiences, including of course classrooms. Dr. Stearns is also eager to promote comparative analysis and the assessment of modern global forces—for their own sake and as they illuminate the American experience and impact.

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Table of Contents

Part I Early World History: From Origins to Agriculture and New Forms of Human Organization

Chapter 1 From Human Prehistory to the Rise of Agriculture

Getting Started Is Always Hard

Human Development and Change

Solving Problems: Dealing with Death

The Neolithic Revolution

History Debate: People in the Americas

The Nature of Agricultural Societies

Agriculture and Change

Paths to the Present

Chapter 2 Early Civilizations 3500 – 1000 B.C.E.


Solving Problems The Use of Culture

Egypt and Mesopotamia Compared

History Debate: Women in Patriarchal Societies

Transitions: The End of the River Valley Period

The Heritage of the River Valley Civilizations

New States and Peoples Around 1000 B.C.E.

Paths to the Present

Chapter 3 Nomadic Societies

Early Nomadic Societies

Nomadic Society and Culture

Nomads and Civilizations

History Debate: The Contributions of Nomads

Nomads and Global Patterns

Paths to the Present

Part I Retrospective The Rise of Agriculture and Agricultural Civilizations

Part II The Classical Period, 1000 B.C.E.– 500 C.E.

Chapter 4 Classical Civilization: China

Patterns in Classical China

Political Institutions

History Debate: War

Religion and Culture

World Profiles: Confucius, or Kong Fuzi (c. 551–479 B.C.E.)

Economy and Society

World Profiles: Ban Zhao (c. 48–117 C.E.)

How Chinese Civilization Fit Together

Paths to the Present

Chapter 5 Classical Civilization: India

The Framework for Indian History: Geography and a Formative Period

Patterns in Classical India

Political Institutions

History Debate: Interpreting Civilization, Round Two

Religion and Culture

Economy and Society

Solving Problems: Dealing with Inequality

Indian Influence

China and India

Paths to the Present

Chapter 6 Classical Civilization in the Mediterranean and Middle East: Persia, Greece, and Rome

The Persian Tradition

Patterns of Greek and Roman History

Greek and Roman Political Institutions

World Profiles: Julius Caesar (100–44 B.C.E.)

Solving Problems: Cultural Encounters

Religion and Culture

Economy and Society in the Mediterranean

History Debate: Mediterranean Civilization and “Western” Civilization

Toward the Fall of Rome

Paths to the Present

Chapter 7 The Classical Period: Directions, Diversities, and Declines by 500 C.E.

Decline in China and India

Decline and Fall in Rome

The New Religious Map

History Debate: What Caused Decline and Fall?

World Profiles: Saint Paul (Paul of Tarsus)

The World Around 500 C.E.

Paths to the Present

Part II Retrospective The Classical Period, 1000 B.C.E.–500 C.E.

Part III The Postclassical Period, 500–1450 C.E.

Chapter 8 The Rise of Islam: Civilization in the Middle East

The Advent of Islam

World Profiles: Muhammad (570–632 C.E.)

Patterns of Islamic History

Islamic Political Institutions

History Debate: Political Implications of Islam

Islam and Middle Eastern Culture

World Profiles Omar Khayyam (c. 11th–12th Centuries)

Solving Problems: Religion and Trade

Economy and Society in the Middle East

The Decline of Middle Eastern Civilization

Paths to the Present

Chapter 9 India and Southeast Asia Under the Impact of Islam

The Development of Indian Culture

History Debate: The Caste System

The Muslim Challenge in India

Southeast Asia

Paths to the Present

Chapter 10 Africa and Islam

Sub-Saharan Africa and the World Network

Solving Problems: Technology and Trade

The Great Kingdoms

World Profiles: Sundiata

History Debate: Handles for African History

Features of African Civilization

Paths to the Present

Chapter 11 East European Civilization: Byzantium and Russia

The Byzantine Phase

World Profiles: The Emperor Justinian (527–565 C.E.)

The Early Russian Phase: Kievan Rus’

History Debate: A Russian Civilization?

East European Political Institutions

East European Religion and Culture

East European Economy and Society

East European Civilization in Eclipse

Paths to the Present

Chapter 12 Western Civilization: The Middle Ages

Early Patterns in Western Civilization

Medieval Political Institutions

History Debate: Homosexuality and Religion

Medieval Religion and Culture

Economy and Society

Solving Problems: Population Growth

Women and Family Life

Tensions in the Later Middle Ages

Paths to the Present

Chapter 13 China’s Impact and the Spread of East Asian Civilization

Political and Cultural Developments in China

World Profiles: Taizong (626–649 C.E.)

Economy and Society in China

Civilization in Korea, Vietnam, and Japan

History Debate: East Asian Civilization?

Culture, Society, and Economy in Japan

World Profiles: Mugai Nyodai

East Asian Self-Confidence

Paths to the Present

Chapter 14 Centers of Civilization in the Americas

The Mayas and Aztecs

History Debate: What Happened to the Mayas?

The Issue of Isolation

Paths to the Present

Chapter 15 The Mongol Interlude and the End of the Postclassical Period

Mongol Empires

World Profiles: Chabi Khan

China and the West as New World Powers

History Debate: Causes of Global Change by 1450

The End of Transition: Postclassical to Early Modern

Paths to the Present

Part III Retrospective The Postclassical Period, 500–1450 C.E.

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