|Chapter I||History's Battleground||3|
|Chapter II||The Culture of Sanity||20|
|Chapter III||The Marxist Irruption: How and Why||34|
|Chapter IV||The Nation: Hope and Hysteria (Nationality, Nationalism, Fascism, National Socialism)||57|
|Chapter V||Totalitarian Party--Totalitarian State||73|
|Chapter VI||Into the Soviet Morass||85|
|Chapter VII||The Great Error: Soviet Myths and Western Minds||115|
|Chapter VIII||Launching the Cold War||150|
|Chapter IX||Missiles and Mind-sets: The Cold War Continues||166|
Reflections on a Ravaged Century / Edition 1by Robert Conquest
Pub. Date: 03/28/2001
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
In the philosophical tradition of George Orwell and Isaiah Berlin, Robert Conquest presents a brilliant work of history and meditation, one that examines the political ideologies that have corrupted the twentieth century and, in the process, sent millions to the slaughterhouse. The main responsibility for our century's cataclysms, Conquest maintains, lies not in impersonal economic or social forces--like revolutionary Marxism or German National Socialism--but in the distortions that polluted human minds with the detritus of absolutist ideas. Conquest finds the failure to understand these phenomena as epidemic in Western civic culture, which has so far--barely--prevailed. Whether discussing Kierkegaard or Koestler or the disasters posed by the new European Economic Union, Conquest has a remarkable ability to fuse literature and history, philosophy and prognostication, and presents here a grand synthesis of our century, seen through its most deeply flawed ideologies.
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A sophisticated narrative that whilst comprehensive is never verbose. Conquest has the foresight that predicted the final collapse of the Soviet Union as a function of its philosophical contradictions and for the same his appeal at suggesting the next likely steps that could unfold make for compelling reading. Whilst his critics before were certainly vocal then they seem to have misunderstood the clear essence of his hypothesis that is so calmly based on the underlying philosophical tenets. And it is with that appreciation that one can see how easily a future alignment between the US, UK, Australia. Canada and New Zealand (Anglosphere) can take place as we recently bore witness to as Saddam's regime was removed from power as a function of US, UK and Australian forces. Some may critique this, but as a brave historian who got it right before Conquest cannot be dismissed so easily. I look forward to more of the same.