File Name: after tamerlane the rise and fall of global empires .zip
All built empires they hoped would last forever: all were destined to fail. But, as John Darwin shows in his magnificent book, their empire building created the world we know today. For the latest books, recommendations, offers and more.
Search this site. After Tamerlane: The Rise and Fall of Global Empires, by John Darwin Synopsis: Tamerlane was the last of the 'world conquerors': his armies looted and killed from the shores of the Mediterranean to the frontier of China. Nomad horsemen from the Steppes had been the terror of Europe and Asia for centuries, but with Tamerlane's death in , an epoch of history came to an end.
Why did the nations of Western Europe rise through the 18th and 19th centuries to create empires which stretched around the world, how did they manage to subjugate ancient nations like China and Japan, to turn vast India into a colonial possession, to carve up Africa between them? How did white European cultures come to dominate not only the territories and peoples who they colonised, but to create the modern mindset — a vast mental framework which encompasses capitalist economics, science and technology and engineering, which dominates the world right down to the present day?
Why did the maritime states of Europe Britain, France, the Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese end up either settling from scratch the relatively empty places of the world America, Australia , or bringing all the other cultures of the world the Ottoman Empire, Hindu India, Confucian China and Shinto Japan under their domination? Some that it was something to do with the highly fragmented nature of Europe, full of squabbling nations vying to outdo each other, and that this rivalry spilled out into unceasing competition for trade, at first across the Atlantic, then along new routes to India and the Far East, eventually encompassing the entire globe.
Some credit the Scientific Revolution, with its proliferation of new technologies from compasses to cannons, an unprecedented explosion of discoveries and inventions. Some credit the slave trade and the enormous profits made from working to death millions and millions of African slaves which fuelled the industrial revolution and paid for the armies which subjugated India. Lenin thought it was the unique way European capitalism had first perfected techniques to exploit the proletariat in the home countries and then applied the same techniques to subjugate less advanced nations, and that the process would inevitably lead to a global capitalist war once the whole world was colonised.
BUT it does so in a way which feels wonderfully new, refreshing and exciting. This is a brilliant book. If you were only going to read one book about imperialism, this is probably The One. He is not himself oppressively politically correct, but he is on the right side of all the modern trends in historical thought i.
Darwin pays a lot more attention than is usual to all the other cultures which co-existed alongside Europe for so long Islam, the Ottoman Empire, the Mughal Empire, the Safavid Empire, the Chinese Empire, Japan, all are treated in fascinating detail and given almost as much space as Europe, more, in the earlier chapters so that reading this book you learn an immense amount about the history of these other cultures over the same period.
But [this book places] Europe and the West in a much larger context: amid the empire-, state- and culture-building projects of other parts of Eurasia. Tamerlane the Eurasian conqueror died in Darwin takes his death as marking the end of an epoch, an era inaugurated by the vast wave of conquest led across central Asia by Genghis Khan starting around , an era in which one ruler could, potentially, aspire to rule the entire Eurasian landmass. Domination of all of China, central Asia, northern India, the Middle East and Europe was, at least in theory, possible, had been achieved by Genghis Khan and his successors, and was the dream which had inspired Tamerlane.
Map of the Mongol Empire created by Genghis Khan. But by the death of Tamerlane the political situation across Eurasia had changed. For centuries nomadic tribes had ravaged through Eurasia before the Mongols it had been the Turks who emerged out of Asia to seize the Middle East and found the Ottoman Dynasty.
Now that era was ending. Empires are the oldest and most widespread form of government. Given this elementary fact about history, why do the west European empires come in for such fierce criticism these days? The imperial legacy is going to affect lots of people, in lots of post-colonial nations, for a long time to come, and they are not going to let us in the old European colonial countries forget it.
It sounds like reviewer hyperbole but there really is a burst of insights on every page of this book. Again and again on every page he unveils insight after insight. For example:. In the aftermath of the Seven Years War — 63 the British government had banned the colonists from migrating across the Appalachians into the Mississippi valley so as to protect the Native Americans and because policing this huge area would be ruinously expensive.
The colonists simply wanted to overthrow these restrictions and, as soon as the War of Independence was over i. India Victorian apologists claimed the British were able to colonise huge India relatively easily because of the superiority of British organisation and energy compared with Oriental sloth and backwardness.
In actual fact, Darwin explains it was in part the opposite: it was because the Indians had a relatively advanced agrarian economy, with good routes of communication, business hubs and merchants — an open and well-organised economy, which the British just barged their way into p.
The Spanish just installed themselves at the top of a well-ordered and effective administrative system. Against genuinely backward people, like the tribes who lived in the arid Arizona desert or the swamps of Florida or hid in the impenetrable Amazon jungle, the Spanish were helpless, because there was no one emperor to take hostage, or huge administrative bureaucracy to take over — which explains why those areas remained uncolonised for centuries.
Cultural conservatism Until about there was still a theoretical possibility that a resurgent Ottoman or Persian empire, China or Japan, might have reorganised and repelled European colonisers. But a decisive factor which in the end prevented them was the intrinsic conservatism of these cultures.
For example, both Chinese and Muslim culture venerated wisdom set down by a wise man Mohammed, Confucius at least a millennium earlier, and teachers, professors, civil servants were promoted insofar as they endorsed and parroted these conservative values. At key moments, when they could have adopted more forward-looking ideologies of change , all the other Eurasian cultures plumped for conservatism and sticking to the Old.
The Western concept of Time Darwin has a fascinating passage about how the Europeans developed a completely new theory of Time p.
It was the exploration of America which did this p. This led European intellectuals to reflect that maybe these people came from an earlier phase of historical development, to develop the new notion that maybe societies evolve and develop and change. Once you have created mental models like this, it is easy to categorise all the other cultures you encounter Ottomans, Hindus, China, Japan, Siam, Annamite etc as somewhere lower or backward on these paths or stages of development.
Darwin explains why: in the eighteenth century there were still multiple European players in the imperial game: France was the strongest power on the continent, but she was balanced out by Prussia, Austria and also Spain and Portugal and the Dutch. Britain emerged from the Napoleonic Wars as the new top dog, with a navy which could beat all-comers, which had hammered the French at the Battle of the Nile and Trafalgar, and which now ruled the waves.
I take the point that his book is focused on Eurasia and the Eurasian empires and I did learn a huge amount about Persia, the Moghul empire, China and Japan and that all sub-Saharan Africa was cut off from Eurasia by the Sahara, but still… it feels like an omission. Russia If Africa is disappointingly absent, an unexpected emphasis is placed in each chapter on the imperial growth of Russia.
I knew next to nothing about this. So it was thrilling to read Darwin give what amounts to a sustained account and explanation of the growth of the Kingdom of Muscovy from the s onwards, describing how it expanded west against Poland, the Baltic states, Sweden , south towards the Black Sea, south-west into the Balkans — but most of all how Russian power was steadily expanded East across the vast inhospitable tundra of Siberia until Russian power reached the Pacific. Can you name any of the many native tribes the Russians fought and conquered?
Are there any books about the Settling of the East as there are thousands and thousands about the conquest of the American West?
It is a historical black hole. It is also fascinating because of the role Russian expansion played again and again in the game of Eurasian Risk which his book describes. At key moments Russian pressure from the North distracted the attention of the Ottoman Empire from making more offensive thrusts into Europe the Ottomans famously encroached right up to the walls of Vienna in and then again in For centuries the Black Sea had been an Ottoman lake and a cheaply defensible frontier.
Now, at a stroke, it became a massive vulnerability which needed costly defence p. And suddenly, seeing it all from the Russian perspective, this sheds new light on the timeworn story of the decline of the Ottoman Empire which I only know about from the later 19th century and from the British perspective.
Darwin likes making numbered lists. They rarely go higher than three. Here are some examples to give a flavour of his careful, forensic and yet thrillingly insightful way of explaining things. The 18th century geopolitical equilibrium The geopolitical revolution which ended the long equilibrium of the 18th century had three major effects:. Very broadly speaking there was peace between the European powers between the s and s. But all these were contained by the system, were mostly of short duration and never threatened to unravel into the kind of general conflict which ravaged Europe under Napoleon.
Emigration Emigration from Europe to the New World was a trickle in the s but had become a flood by the s. Between and over eight million people left Europe, mostly for America. Gold rushes This sense of leaping, hurtling speed was turbo-charged by literal gold rushes, whether in the American West in the s or in South Africa where it was first gold then diamonds. Suddenly tens of thousands of white men turned up, quickly followed by townships full of traders and artisans, then the railway, the telegraph, the sheriffs with their guns — all far faster than any native American or South African cultures could hope to match or even understand.
Shallow And this leads onto another massive idea which reverberates through the rest of the book and which really changed my understanding. This is that, as the spread of empire became faster and faster, reaching a kind of hysterical speed in the so-called Scramble For Africa in the s the phrase was, apparently, coined by the London Times in it meant that there was something increasingly shallow about its rule, especially in Africa.
The Scramble took place with almost no conflict between the European powers — in fact they agreed to partitions and drew up lines in a very equable way at the Congress of Berlin in Africa was undermanned or underpeopled.
Hence the poverty and the lack of resistance which most of the conquerors encountered in most of Africa. For example, in the mids a huge swathe of West Africa between the desert and the forest was seized by a buccaneering group of French marine officers under Commandant Louis Archinard, and their black rank and file. The government back in Paris felt compelled to back them up which meant sending out more troops, police and so on, which would cost money.
Modern-day liberals often forget that imperialism was wildly popular. Darwin on every page, describes and explains the deep economic, trade and financial structures which the West put in place during the nineteenth century and which eventually underpinned an unstoppable steamroller of annexation, protectorates, short colonial wars and long-term occupation.
The Congress of Berlin helped to formalise the carving up of Africa, and so it has come to be thought of as evil and iniquitous, particularly by BAME and woke historians. If only Bismarck had been around in to suggest that instead of rapidly mobilising to confront each other, the powers of Europe had once again been invited for tea and cake at the Reichstag to discuss their differences like gentlemen and come to an equable agreement.
Seen from this perspective, the Berlin Congress is not so much an evil colonialist conspiracy, but an extremely successful event which avoided any wars between the European powers for nearly thirty years. Africa was going to be colonised anyway because human events have a logic of their own: the success was in doing so without sparking a European conflagration.
Why not? This is an absolutely brilliant book. And of course it all leads up to where we are today: a resurgent Russia flexing its muscles in Ukraine and Crimea; China wielding its vast economic power and brutally oppressing its colonial subjects in Tibet and Xinkiang, while buying land, resources and influence in Africa. And Turkey, keen as its rulers of all colours have been since the Ottoman days, to keep the Kurds down.
And Iran, as its rulers have done for a thousand years, continually seeking new ways to extend its influence around the Gulf, across Syria and to the Mediterranean, in eternal rivalry with the Arab world which, in our time, means Saudi Arabia, against whom Iran is fighting a proxy war in the Yemen.
Darwin stands up for intelligence and insight, for careful analysis and, above all, for a realistic grasp of human nature and human society — deeply, profoundly flawed and sometimes pitiful and wretched though both routinely are. He takes an adult view. It is absolutely thrilling and a privilege to be at his side as he explains and analysis this enormous history, with such confidence, and with so many brilliant ideas and insights.
I have come to this review from your later series of essays on Marlowe. Those have been compelling; this one on Darwin has seen me once again getting out my credit card and ordering the book. I believe Niall Ferguson has said that empires are the natural mature form of human society, and the evidence is their continual blossoming from the Bronze Age. Adam Smith says that capitalism leads inexorably to monopoly, that this is their natural fruition, unless hindered by governments; if empire is the natural fruition of the amoral forces of human political hunger or velocity or perhaps evolution, what can hinder it?
Empire will not stop empire, and the UN is an example of exactly that. Perhaps there is nothing that can stop empires and that nothing should stop them. But every empire ends. The empire has eaten the world. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account.
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interpretations of the rise and fall of empires and argues against the exaggerated importance given to Europe. Such an ambitious book, vast in its.
Why did the nations of Western Europe rise through the 18th and 19th centuries to create empires which stretched around the world, how did they manage to subjugate ancient nations like China and Japan, to turn vast India into a colonial possession, to carve up Africa between them? How did white European cultures come to dominate not only the territories and peoples who they colonised, but to create the modern mindset — a vast mental framework which encompasses capitalist economics, science and technology and engineering, which dominates the world right down to the present day? Why did the maritime states of Europe Britain, France, the Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese end up either settling from scratch the relatively empty places of the world America, Australia , or bringing all the other cultures of the world the Ottoman Empire, Hindu India, Confucian China and Shinto Japan under their domination? Some that it was something to do with the highly fragmented nature of Europe, full of squabbling nations vying to outdo each other, and that this rivalry spilled out into unceasing competition for trade, at first across the Atlantic, then along new routes to India and the Far East, eventually encompassing the entire globe.
An empire is a sovereign state consisting of several territories and peoples subject to a single ruling authority, often an emperor. States can be empires either by narrow definition through having an emperor and being named as such, or by broad definition as stated above in being an aggregated realm under the rule of a supreme authority. An empire can be made solely of contiguous territories, such as the Austro-Hungarian Empire or the Russian Empire , or include territories which are far remote from the 'home' country of the empire, such as a colonial empire.
The world in which we live is largely the product of the rise, competition, and fall of empires. This chapter examines European, and principally British, ideologies of imperialism during the last two hundred years. The chapter starts by distinguishing between imperial imaginaries, ideologies, and theories, before dissecting elements of the western imperial imaginary, focusing in particular on notions of civilizational hierarchy.
In the autumn of , Tamerlane embarked on what would be his last campaign. Just a few months earlier he had returned to Samarkand flush with spoils from his recent sack of Delhi. Now - while the elephants he had brought from India were put to work hauling stone for a spectacular new mosque - he marched southwest to fight the Ottoman sultan.
Бринкерхофф подошел к кабинету. Голоса показались ему знакомыми. Он толкнул дверь. Комната оказалась пуста. Пуст был и вращающийся стул Мидж.
Выслушай меня, Мидж. Направь мне официальный запрос. В понедельник я проверю твою машину. А пока сваливай-ка ты отсюда домой. Сегодня же суббота.
У нас чрезвычайная ситуация, и мне нужен этот список. Бринкерхофф положил руки ей на плечи. - Мидж, ну пожалуйста, успокойся. Ты знаешь, что я не могу… Она фыркнула и снова повернулась к клавиатуре.
Она кивнула, и из ее глаз потекли слезы. - Договорились. - Агент Смит! - позвал Фонтейн.
Моя любовь без воска. Это было его местью. Она посвятила Дэвида в некоторые секреты криптографии и, желая держать его в состоянии полной готовности к неожиданностям, посылала ему записки, зашифрованные не слишком сложным образом. Список необходимых покупок, любовные признания - все приходило к нему в зашифрованном виде. Это была игра, и со временем Дэвид стал неплохим шифровальщиком.
- Вечером в субботу. - Нет, - сказала Мидж. - Насколько я знаю Стратмора, это его дела.
На ВР туча из черных нитей все глубже вгрызалась в оставшиеся щиты. Дэвид сидел в мини-автобусе, тихо наблюдая за драмой, разыгрывавшейся перед ним на мониторе. - Сьюзан! - позвал. - Меня осенило.
The End of the British Empire: The Historical Debate. After Tamerlane. The Rise and Fall of Global Empires, HN DARWIN. BLOOMSBURY PRESS.Paciente U. 13.06.2021 at 07:48
After Tamerlane: The Rise and Fall of Global Empires, - Kindle edition by Darwin, John. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC.Christine S. 14.06.2021 at 14:41
From the death of Tamerlane in , to America's rise to world "hyperpower," to the resurgence of China and India as global economic powers, After Tamerlane is.