Antiquity: From the Birth of Sumerian Civilization to the Fall of the Roman Empire

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Harper Collins, Sep 14, 2004 - History - 272 pages
2 Reviews

Bestselling author Norman Cantor delivers this compact but magisterial survey of the ancient world -- from the birth of Sumerian civilization around 3500 B.C. in the Tigris-Euphrates valley (present-day Iraq) to the fall of the Roman Empire in A.D. 476. In Antiquity, Cantor covers such subjects as Classical Greece, Judaism, the founding of Christianity, and the triumph and decline of Rome.

In this fascinating and comprehensive analysis, the author explores social and cultural history, as well as the political and economic aspects of his narrative. He explains leading themes in religion and philosophy and discusses the environment, population, and public health. With his signature authority and insight, Cantor highlights the great books and ideas of antiquity that continue to influence culture today.

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Cantor wrote a suitable book for the common knowledge we all gained in history class over the years. This book did help refresh my mind on Judaism/Christian religion and the Greeks. He seemed to spend more time and effort on certain areas of history, while glossing over others. Although his ideas were well indexed, it felt as if the book jumped from idea to idea not really keeping a clear timeline.
I feel as if this book was too cluttered with information. Although I believe Cantor had a good idea at the time, trying to condense the beginning of civilization, it felt poorly executed. It feels as if he mixed some of his general findings in with his thoughts and judgments, making it somewhat hard to differentiate between the two. I believe he just took on too big of a challenge; I would have much rather if he would have focused more on the ancient cities and their justifiable hold on culture today.
 

Review: Antiquity

User Review  - Chakara - Goodreads

I gave this book three stars because it had great information. However the writing style was confusing and long winded. The book should not take the reader long and should be able to be read cover to cover, I found myself using the textbook method throughout over half the book . Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Norman F. Cantor was Emeritus Professor of History, Sociology, and Comparative Literature at New York University. His many books include In the Wake of the Plague, Inventing the Middle Ages, and The Civilization of the Middle Ages, the most widely read narrative of the Middle Ages in the English language. He died in 2004.

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