William Woodruff - A Concise History Of The Modern World - Little, Brown Book Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds

A Concise History Of The Modern World

By William Woodruff

  • Paperback
  • £12.99

* A short history of the world from 1500 to the present.

This book investigates the major changes in world history and world economy during the past five hundred years and explains to what extent world forces have been responsible for shaping both past and present. Its underlying theme is the struggle for power in which, since the sixteenth century, the West has prevailed. Many of the problems of the contemporary world - including terrorism - are the legacy of the period of Western domination. Until the rise of the West, and its incomparable impact on every branch of human activity, the centre of the world has been in Asia. By the nineteenth century world power was firmly in the hands of the West. America's later rise to world status was prompted by the two world wars. The most prominent of the Western nations, the US is now blamed for all the excesses of an earlier colonial age.

Biographical Notes

From his birth in 1916 until he ran away to London, William Woodruff lived
in the heart of Blackburn's weaving community. He eventually went to Oxford
University and lived in Florida for over forty years. He died in 2008.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780349118376
  • Publication date: 17 Nov 2005
  • Page count: 544
  • Imprint: Abacus
Woodruff's writing is fresh, vivid, honest and intelligent — Sunday Times
Da Capo Press

A Christmas Far from Home

Stanley Weintraub
Authors:
Stanley Weintraub
Abacus

England, Arise

Juliet Barker
Authors:
Juliet Barker

The dramatic and shocking events of the Peasants' Revolt of 1381 are to be the backdrop to Juliet Barker's latest book: a snapshot of what everyday life was like for ordinary people living in the middle ages. The same highly successful techniques she deployed inAgincourt and Conquest will this time be brought to bear on civilian society, from the humblest serf forced to provide slave-labour for his master in the fields, to the prosperous country goodwife brewing, cooking and spinning her distaff and the ambitious burgess expanding his business and his mental horizons in the town.The book will explore how and why such a diverse and unlikely group of ordinary men and women from every corner of England united in armed rebellion against church and state to demand a radical political agenda which, had it been implemented, would have fundamentally transformed English society and anticipated the French Revolution by four hundred years. The book will not only provide an important reassessment of the revolt itself but will also be an illuminating and original study of English medieval life at the time.

Nation Books

The 51 Day War

Max Blumenthal
Authors:
Max Blumenthal

On July 8, 2014, Israel launched air strikes on Hamas-controlled Gaza, followed by a ground invasion. The ensuing fifty-one days of war left more than 2,200 people dead, the vast majority of whom were Palestinian civilians, including over 500 children. During the assault, at least 10,000 homes were destroyed and, according to the United Nations, nearly 300,000 Palestinians were displaced. Max Blumenthal was in Gaza and throughout Israel-Palestine during what he argues was an entirely avoidable catastrophe. In this explosive work of intimate reportage, Blumenthal reveals the harrowing conditions and cynical deceptions that led to the ruinous war,and tells the human stories.Blumenthal brings the battles in Gaza to life, detailing the ferocious clashes that took place when Israel's military invaded the besieged strip. He radically shifts the discussion around a number of highly contentious issues: the use of civilians as human shields by Israeli forces, the arbitrary targeting of Palestinian civilians, and the radicalization of Israeli public officials and top military personnel. Amid the rubble of Gaza's border regions, Blumenthal recorded the testimonies from scores of residents, documenting potential war crimes committed by the Israeli armed forces while carefully examining the military doctrine that led to them.More than a chronicle of war and devastation, The 51 Day War is an urgent warning that the aftermath of the conflict has made another military assault on Gaza almost inevitable. And while the people of Gaza will once again prove their resilience, the world can no longer just stand aside and watch.

Basic Books

Massacre

John Merriman
Authors:
John Merriman

The Paris Commune lasted for only 64 days in 1871, but during that short time it gave rise to some of the grandest political dreams of the nineteenth century-before culminating in horrific violence.Following the disastrous French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War, hungry and politically disenchanted Parisians took up arms against their government in the name of a more just society. They expelled loyalists and soldiers and erected barricades in the streets. In Massacre , John Merriman introduces a cast of inimitable Communards-from les pétroleuses (female incendiaries) to the painter Gustave Courbet-whose idealism fueled a revolution. And he vividly recreates the Commune's chaotic and bloody end when 30,000 troops stormed the city, burning half of Paris and executing captured Communards en masse.A stirring evocation of the spring when Paris was ablaze with cannon fire and its citizens were their own masters, Massacre reveals how the indomitable spirit of the Commune shook the very foundations of Europe.

Basic Books

All Eyes are Upon Us

Jason Sokol
Authors:
Jason Sokol
Da Capo Press

A Death in San Pietro

Tim Brady
Authors:
Tim Brady

By the time Mark Clark's Fifth Army reached the small village of San Pietro north of Naples in the first week of December 1943, a tough but rapid sweep through Sicily came to a muddy halt. On the slopes of a distant mountain, the death of a single platoon captain, Henry Waskow, epitomized the struggle. A Death in San Pietro chronicles the quietly heroic and beloved Captain Waskow and his company as they make their way into battle. Waskow's 36th (&ldquoTexas&rdquo) Division would ultimately succeed in driving the Germans off the mountains but not before eighty percent of Waskow's company is lost in action.For Americans back home, two of the war's most lasting artistic expression brought horrified focus to the battlefield, already dubbed"Purple Heart Valley&rdquo by the men of the 36th. Pulitzer Prize-winner Ernie Pyle's dispatch about Waskow's death and filmmaker John Huston's award-winning documentary of the battle rivets- and shocks- the nation, bringing, as if for the first time, the awful carnage of world war into living rooms across America.

PublicAffairs

Front Burner

Kirk Lippold
Authors:
Kirk Lippold

On October 12, 2000, eleven months before the 9/11 attacks, the USS Cole docked in the port of Aden in Yemen for a routine fuelling stop. At 1118, on a hot, sunny morning, the 8,400-ton destroyer was rocked by an enormous explosion. The ship's commander, Kirk Lippold, felt the ship violently thrust up and to the right, as everything not bolted down seemed to float in midair. Tiles tumbled from the ceiling, and the ship was plunged into darkness, beginning to sink. In a matter of moments Lippold knew that the Cole had been attacked. What he didn't know was how much the world was changing around him. The bombing of the Cole was al Qaeda's first direct assault against the United States and expanded their brazen and deadly string of terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East. In this gripping first-person narrative, Lippold reveals the details of this harrowing experience leading his crew of valiant sailors through the attack and its aftermath. Seventeen sailors died in the explosion and thirty-seven were wounded- but thanks to the valor of the crew in the perilous days that followed, the ship was saved. Yet even with al Qaeda's intentions made clear in an unmistakable act of war, the United States government delayed retaliating. Bureaucrats and politicians sought to shift and pin blame as they ignored the danger signaled by the attack, shirking responsibility until the event was ultimately overshadowed by 9/11. Front Burner captures a critical moment in America's battle against al Qaeda, telling a vital story that has- until now- been lost in the fog of the war on terror.

Da Capo Press

Pearl Harbor Christmas

Stanley Weintraub
Authors:
Stanley Weintraub

Christmas 1941 came little more than two weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The shock- in some cases overseas, elation- was worldwide. While Americans attempted to go about celebrating as usual, the reality of the just-declared war was on everybody's mind. United States troops on Wake Island were battling a Japanese landing force and, in the Philippines, losing the fight to save Luzon. In Japan, the Pearl Harbor strike force returned to Hiroshima Bay and toasted its sweeping success. Across the Atlantic, much of Europe was frozen in grim Nazi occupation. Just three days before Christmas, Churchill surprised Roosevelt with an unprecedented trip to Washington, where they jointly lit the White House Christmas tree. As the two Allied leaders met to map out a winning wartime strategy, the most remarkable Christmas of the century played out across the globe. Pearl Harbor Christmas is a deeply moving and inspiring story about what it was like to live through a holiday season few would ever forget.

Basic Books

Pearl Harbor

Steven M. Gillon
Authors:
Steven M. Gillon

Franklin D. Roosevelt famously called December 7, 1941, a date which will live in infamy." History would prove him correct the events of that day,when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor,ended the Great Depression, changed the course of FDR's presidency, and swept America into World War II. In Pearl Harbor , acclaimed historian Steven M. Gillon provides a vivid, minute-by-minute account of Roosevelt's skillful leadership in the wake of the most devastating military assault in American history. FDR proved both decisive and deceptive, inspiring the nation while keeping the real facts of the attack a secret from congressional leaders and the public. Pearl Harbor explores the anxious and emotional events surrounding the attack on Pearl Harbor, showing how the president and the American public responded in the pivotal twenty-four hours that followed, a period in which America burst from precarious peace into total war.

Da Capo Press

Grant's Final Victory

Charles Bracelen Flood
Authors:
Charles Bracelen Flood

Shortly after losing all of his wealth in a terrible 1884 swindle, Ulysses S. Grant learned he had terminal throat and mouth cancer. Destitute and dying, Grant began to write his memoirs to save his family from permanent financial ruin. As Grant continued his work, suffering increasing pain, the American public became aware of this race between Grant's writing and his fatal illness. Twenty years after his respectful and magnanimous demeanor toward Robert E. Lee at Appomattox, people in both the North and the South came to know Grant as the brave, honest man he was, now using his famous determination in this final effort. Grant finished Memoirs just four days before he died in July 1885. Published after his death by his friend Mark Twain, Grant's Memoirs became an instant bestseller, restoring his family's financial health and, more importantly, helping to cure the nation of bitter discord. More than any other American before or since, Grant, in his last year, was able to heal this,the country's greatest wound.

Abacus

The Road To Nab End

William Woodruff
Authors:
William Woodruff

William Woodruff had the sort of childhood satirised in the famous Monty Python Yorkshireman sketch. The son of a weaver, he was born on a pallet of straw at the back of the mill and two days later his mother was back at work. Life was extrememly tough for the family in 1920's Blackburn -- a treat was sheep's head or cow heel soup -- and got worse when his father lost his job when the cotton industry started its terminal decline. Woodruff had to find his childhood fun in the little free time he had available between his delivery job and school, but he never writes self-pityingly, leaving the reader to shed the tears on his behalf. At ten his mother takes him on his one and only holiday -- to Blackpool. He never wonders where they get the money to do so, only where she disappears to with strange men in the afternoons, before taking him to the funfair, pockets jingling an hour or two later. NAB END is certainly not all grime and gloom however, there's a cast of great minor characters from an unfrocked vicar to William's indomitable grandmother Bridget who lend some colour and humour -- and all against the strongly rendered social backdrop of the 1920s and 1930s.

Basic Books

America, Empire of Liberty

David Reynolds
Authors:
David Reynolds
PublicAffairs

Libby Prison Breakout

Joseph Wheelan
Authors:
Joseph Wheelan

During the winter of 1863-1864, 1,200 Union officers lived in squalor and semi-starvation in Richmond's Libby Prison, known as "The Bastille of the South." On February 9, 109 of those officers wriggled through a fifty-five-foot tunnel to freedom. After an all-out Rebel manhunt, survivors reached Washington, and their testimony spurred far-reaching investigations into the treatment of Union prisoners. Libby Prison Breakout tells the largely unknown story of the most important escape of the Civil War from a Confederate prison, one that ultimately increased the North's and South's willingness to use prisoners in waging "total war."

Piatkus

Pistols At Dawn

Richard Hopton
Authors:
Richard Hopton

After the gross and unjustifiable insults you have offered me both as a soldier and a gentleman, I conclude you must be prepared to give me that satisfaction I am entitled to. I am therefore to request that you will name a place and hour of meeting.'So runs a typical challenge to a duel from the early 19th century; formal, polite - and potentially fatal. Duelling is deeply imbedded in our collective consciousness, through numerous films and novels; it evokes a golden past, of gentlemen defending their honour (or that of their wives) in the early morning light of a wooded glade; of frockcoats, rapiers and pistols.From the duel's roots in medieval chivalric tournaments, to the unforgiving code of honour in which death was preferable to shame, this fascinating history recounts - with the aid of numerous vivid eye-witness accounts - all the drama and sheer terror of the duel.

PublicAffairs

Voices from the Grave

Ed Moloney
Authors:
Ed Moloney

The dawning of peace in Northern Ireland has not brought with it much truth about what happened during'the long war'. Very few of the paramilitary leaders on either side have ever spoken candidly about their role in that bloody conflict. But here, in a dramatic break with the unwritten laws of paramilitary omertà, two leading figures from opposing sides reveal their involvement in bombings, shootings and killings and speak frankly about how differently their wars came to an end. Brendan Hughes was a legend in the Republican movement. An'operator', a gun-runner and mastermind of some of the most savage IRA violence of the Troubles, he was a friend and close ally of Gerry Adams and was by his side during the most brutal years of the conflict. David Ervine was the most substantial political figure to emerge from the world of Loyalist paramilitaries. A former Ulster Volunteer Force bomber and confidante of its long-time leader Gusty Spence, Ervine helped steer Loyalism's gunmen towards peace, persuading the UVF's leaders to target IRA and Sinn Fein activists and push them down the road to a ceasefire. In extensive interviews given to researchers from Boston College on condition that their stories be kept secret until after their deaths, these men spoke with astonishing openness about their turbulent, violent lives. Now their stories have been woven into a vivid narrative which provides compelling insight into a secret world and events long hidden from history. Voices from the Grave is the inaugural publication. of the Boston College IRA/UVF Oral History Project of which Professor Thomas E. Hachey and Dr Robert O'Neill are the General Editors.

Basic Books

The Sun and the Moon

Matthew Goodman
Authors:
Matthew Goodman
Da Capo Press

Escape from the Deep

Alex Kershaw
Authors:
Alex Kershaw
Nation Books

Before the Storm

Rick Perlstein
Authors:
Rick Perlstein
Hachette Australia

Defying the Odds

Michele Cunningham
Authors:
Michele Cunningham

Sandakan is one of the least known - and least commemorated - of WWII wartime atrocities. The officers were separated from their men in October 1943 in order to lessen their influence over them, after a radio and intelligence network was uncovered in the camp. Uniquely, they were the only officers who were required by the Japanese to undertake heavy manual labour along with the other ranks over an extended period of time (twelve months). This is not a story of atrocities, although torture, beatings and abuse did occur. It is, rather, a story of the struggle to survive with ever diminishing resources and the determination to maintain morale through reading, studying and the unearthing of musical and acting talents.

Civitas Books

April 4, 1968

Michael Eric Dyson
Authors:
Michael Eric Dyson

On April 4, 1968, at 6:01 p.m., while he was standing on a balcony at a Memphis hotel, Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and fatally wounded. Only hours earlier King ended his final speech with the words, I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight, that we as a people will get to the Promised Land." Acclaimed public intellectual and best-selling author Michael Eric Dyson examines how King fought, and faced, his own death, and how America can draw on his legacy in the twenty-first century. April 4, 1968 celebrates the leadership of Dr. King, and challenges America to renew its commitment to his vision.