Good reading material - books on global history

From: matthew gream (
Date: Thu Oct 12 2000 - 02:51:11 MDT

[ Non-member submission ]

Perhaps I can appeal to the collective brains trust of readers on this list
for suggestions of good reading material covering 'where the world has come
to, and possibly where it is going', especially by authors and intellectuals
that have a broader view of history, and not too much technological myopia.
Personally I am trying to escape my technological parochialism and get a
clearer picture of where technology fits into the direction of society (my
professional concerns are with a general picture of technology and society).

So far I have read the following:

1. Manuel Castells - The Information Age ... magnum opus from a long time
scholar which a more socialist perspective on globalisation, who develops
important concepts and perspectives on the way that peoples and cultures are
being organised globally, and particular pressure points and issues that may
continue to shape future events, based on years of pragmatic research and

2. Thomas Friedman - The Lexus and the Olive Tree ... pulitzer prize winning
author writes something of a pop book on globalisation by appealing to
popularist notions of McDonalds and well known global brands and products,
generally centered around the power of the financial markets and the
economic dimension of globalisation as it impacts on the way people live.

3. J.M. Roberts - The Penguin History of the Twentieth Century ... well
known and accomplisted historian writes on the twentieth century as a
cronological tale of major structures and forces prevelant around the world
prior to 1901, and then the developments across the globe as events shaped
and developed across the century with a strong sense of concepts and

What I have not read so far (but intend to) is:

4. Jacques Barzun - From Dawn to Decadence : 500 years of Western Cultural
Life, 1500 to the Present
5. David Reynolds - One World Divisible : A Global History Since 1945

This is amidst a mix of other things, including sci fi, pop futurism, and so

Further suggestions ? Comments ? Hopefully any suggestions will be for the
wider benefit of readers, not just myself.

Best regards,
Sir Matthew the Wanker.
Year 2000 Sabbatical
Roma, Italia.

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