Category Books

Peter F. Hamilton's Pandora's Star

Peter F. Hamilton’s Pandora’s Star and Judas Unchained

Times flies! I did not realize how long it had been since my last post so I thought I would make some updates this weekend. On on the docket today is a review of Peter F. Hamilton’s two-part SciFi series: Pandora Star and Judas Unchained. If there is anything you should know about me, it is that […]

Clash of Civilizations

Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations

Originally published in 1996, years before the tragedies of 9/11, Huntington’s civilizational theory of international politics became quickly controversial for stark contrasts and incompatibilities he suggested between the West and the Islamic worlds. Before sharing my commentary on this theory, I should try to give a summary of Huntington’s theory. Written in the aftermath of […]

Isaiah Berlin's The Crooked Timber of Humanity

Isaiah Berlin’s The Crooked Timber of Humanity

Politics today, especially the American variant, is an extremely divisive topic for people to discuss. I think we’ve all heard it said that the best way to make new friends is to avoid discussing religion or politics. I think that’s generally a true statement — although some folks a eager to discuss politics as spectators […]

The Education of Henry Adams

Henry Adams’ The Education of Henry Adams

That’s an odd title for an autobiography, isn’t it? But it does say something both about the writer and the style in which it was written. Written entirely in the third person (more on that later), Henry Adams completed this book — a sort of mixture between memoir and theoretical historical musing — and distributed […]

Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs, and Steel

The racial explanation of civilization’s development has been the cause of a great deal of suffering in the world. Many see countries dealing with severe poverty or embroiled in continuous war between factions as evidence of some important racial differences. They use this world perspective to rationalize their biases (or flat out bigotry) and perpetuate hate. […]

Roger Osborne’s Civilization: A New History of the Western World

Next up on the menu is Roger Osborne’s Civilization: A New History of the Western World. Continuing the trend that most western historians are solipsistically (is that even a word?) ever only concerned with the west, Osborne charts the path  of western society from its pre-historic roots to the modern world. While no history can be comprehensive and […]