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ANOTHER WONDERFUL WORK BY DURANT
Posted by D. Blankenship on 1/15/2006
Durant's popularization of history, which he continues with this wonderful volume, has been and indeed, still is poo-pooed by many an academic. I first learned of this years ago while taking a never ending series of history courses in college. Almost to the man and woman, they, the professors, would gave collective fits if a student brought the name of Durant to class and heaven help the student who used a "popular history writer" to class in the form of a reference on a paper. I knew then that I had to own and read these books. I did and do now and have not regretted it one bit. Popular history, i.e. history that most of us can actually read and learn from is a wonderful thing. Few of us grow up to be academics and works such as these open many windows for us, the common person. I have been reading and rereading this series for years and have not regretted it one bit. This particular volume of course examines the French Revolution, it's results and those involved. Durant's style continues to come through and I promise you, you will learn much in a very enjoyable fashion. Recommend highly.
Posted by Anonymous on 10/17/1999
I remember seeing these sets of books in my University Bookstore in College--never read them, but picked up the whole set for .25 each at a garage sale. Little did I know what I'd been missing. I also just started teaching history in Calgary--a colleague agreed with me that they are fabulous, but said the snobby professors looked down on the Durants as "popularizers." I can't think of a higher compliment. Excellent footnotes, with quotes from primary resources, all the marks of a hallmark historian. I reading these books like steamy romance novels--and they are a lot more fun. Durrant is not afraid to comment on the sexual mores/and morality of the times. His judgments are pithy and well, history is riveting. I would have paid full price for these if I'd known how good they were!