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1. European Culture Since 1848: From
2. Cultures in Conflict: Encounters
3. Indo-European Language and Culture:
4. The European Culture Area: A Systematic
5. Encyclopedia of Blacks in European
6. The Zenith of European Monarchy
7. The Culture of the Europeans:
8. Catholic Millenarianism: From
9. Millenarianism and Messianism
10. Heresy, Magic and Witchcraft in
11. Modernism as a Philosophical Problem:
12. Neo-Avantgarde and Culture Industry:
13. Postcolonial Approaches to the
14. Indian Culture and European Trade
15. European Culture in the Great
16. Classical Influences on European
17. The New European Cinema: Redrawing
18. Subjugated Animals: Animals And
19. Communicating Cultures: European
20. Trials of Europeanization: Turkish

1. European Culture Since 1848: From Modern to Postmodern and Beyond
by James A. Winders
Paperback: 304 Pages (2001-09-22)
list price: US$33.00 -- used & new: US$28.05
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Asin: 0312228732
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Emerging from the convergence of intellectual history, andEuropean Culture Since 1848 is the first book that meets the challenge of the new cultural history by offering a thematic survey of modern European culture that synthesizes new directions and interpretive debates. James Winders explores the themes in clear and accessible language and fills a longstanding need for a wide-ranging, thematic study of modern European cultural history, including popular culture, with long-overdue emphasis on the second half of the 20th century. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

3-0 out of 5 stars History of the "Happy Few"
The thing that most strikes me after having read this book is that most of the time the focus lies on France. I mean, is France so great a nation? 80% of the "trendsetters" listed are French: from Sartre, to Debussy. There are a few occassional references to Germans, Britishmen and Italians. As for the others like the Dutch and the Danish: the book seems to say that they were somewhere else.

Another backdraw would be that this book outlines the newsmaking events in European history. You will come across important musicians who set new styles, and likewise painters and writers especially. But what about trends in history? World War? Creation of nations? It is not possible to realize the present without accounting for these events. New styles and new trends will not make a seafull of a difference. So this book must be a misnomer: it is not really history as we think of it.

That is why it can be called "history of the happy few."

Lastly, the final chapters about postmodernism and photography are not very interesting. This would make a good book for passing time. As if we all have chunks of it. ... Read more

2. Cultures in Conflict: Encounters Between European and Non-European Cultures, 1492-1800
by Urs Bitterli
Paperback: 216 Pages (1993-06-01)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$21.00
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Asin: 0804721769
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Focusing on the cultural encounters between European explorers and non-European peoples, the author reconstructs the experiences of both sides in case studies that span five continents. ... Read more

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5-0 out of 5 stars Tells important stories from the perspective of the "losers"
William Penn's dream of a safe haven for religious tolerance vs. the perspective of the Native Americans already in Pennsylvania, who were always "looking east."

What really happened to James Cook at Kealakekua Bay, and why.
... Read more

3. Indo-European Language and Culture: An Introduction (Blackwell Textbooks in Linguistics)
by Benjamin W. Fortson
Paperback: 568 Pages (2009-09-01)
list price: US$57.95 -- used & new: US$53.35
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Asin: 1405188960
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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This revised and expanded edition provides a comprehensive overview of comparative Indo-European linguistics and the branches of the Indo-European language family, covering both linguistic and cultural material. Now offering even greater coverage than the first edition, it is the definitive introduction to the field.

  • Updated, corrected, and expanded edition, containing new illustrations of selected texts and inscriptions, and text samples with translations and etymological commentary
  • Extensively covers individual histories of both ancient and modern languages of the Indo-European family
  • Provides an overview of Proto-Indo-European culture, society, and language
  • Designed for use in courses, with exercises and suggestions for further reading included in each chapter
  • Includes maps, a glossary, a bibliography, and comprehensive word and subject indexes
... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Book About Indo-European
There is simply not another book currently available that is a more comprehensive or better introduction to Indo-European linguistics.It is the book I wish I had when I was studying Indo-European comparative grammar at Hunter College many years ago.I am currently using it as the main text in a special studies program I am teaching.

5-0 out of 5 stars Valuable Introduction for the Curious
This book comes in two parts, an overview of Proto-Indo-European (including cultural as well as linguistic considerations), and a survey of each branch of the family. The first part serves its purpose fairly well as an introduction, although I'm not sure how much sense the discussion of (say) the verbal system makes without experience in at least one old IE language. Still, the discussions of IE grammar are relatively clear and accessible. If you want a more elegant view of this material, I recommend James Clackson's Indo-European Linguistics: An Introduction (Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics), which covers much the same material in a crystal clear style, and navigates the controversies of reconstruction a bit more masterfully (unsurprising, since Clackson's book is explicitly designed to cover the controversial aspects of the field for a relative beginner). I highly recommend using these two books together (especially since Clackson has no survey of the branches as Fortson does).

The second half is where Fortson really shines. Each chapter covers one particular branch, and they can easily be read independently of each other in any order. If some reviewers aren't interested in all the branches, or in some of the more recent languages which Fortson discusses, then they can just skip those sections; Fortson makes it easy. Each chapter contains sections on history and culture, outlines the main characteristics of each branch, and then discusses the grammatical features each sub-family within the branch. These are hardly complete grammars, of course, but Fortson generally does an excellent job of capturing some of the most striking features of each family, and whetting your appetite for more. The text samples for you to work through are very nice features.

Fortson ends each chapter with a Further Reading section, which often contains some important reference grammars, dictionaries, and articles for the family. The main lack is that Fortson generally does not suggest pedagogical grammars, which is a shame since the book introduces languages so well that I (at least) often want to follow up study with a good, reliable teaching resource. It would save a great deal of uncertainty and searching if Fortson had offered some recommendations to begin with (though I can appreciate the difficulty this would have created for the author, since recommending pedagogical grammars is so often a matter of explaining the pros and cons of a number of imperfect resources).

I'm giving this book five stars since I feel that it's intended audience--interested students or dilettantes--will find this an amazingly valuable introduction which really does contain a wealth of information. Read this in conjunction with Clackson, and you will get an excellent overview of Proto-Indo-European, as well as nice introductions to each of the sub-families (which are usually fascinating even internally, regardless of their value for PIE reconstruction). There's a lot more to IE linguistics than can possibly be covered in these two books, but they provide very solid foundations for further language study or reading about the field.

4-0 out of 5 stars Useful introduction to linguistic elements, but cultural elements are underdeveloped
This is a useful introduction to Indo-European linguistics, and it provides the barest of introductions to the cutural aspects.These are hardly on the same level:the linguistic introduction is solid and well-developed, while the cutural aspects are barely outlined and largely undeveloped.

The book provides a reasonably comprehensive but introductory survey to each of the Indo-European language branches, as well as brief surveys within the branches.Each of these surveys looks at phonological, morphological, and syntactic changes.

This book is designed to take an absolute beginner from no knowledge in comparative linguistics to a point of having a good foundation of the comparative and historical linguistics of the Indo-European language family.While I am not entirely sure this book hits the mark there (it starts out assuming no knowledge but moves forward EXTREMELY FAST), it certainly is close.

I would recommend this work subject to the caveat that the promise of an introduction to Indo-European cultural studies is entirely unfulfilled.

1-0 out of 5 stars The very foundation of Indo European linguistics has evaporated
"Therefore, something must be wrong with the Germanic Consonant Shift. That wrong thing cannot possibly be sought at the Germanic end because the phonetic equation (Lat `pater'= Goth. Fadar, Lat tria=Goth prija, Lat. Card=Goth hairt etc. etc.) that led to the conception of Grimm's Law in the first place are unimpeachable. We have to conduct our investigation at the Proto-Aryan (P-A) end (Gessman 1990, p. 6)."

"It can be safely assumed that these migrating tribes did not represent large armies who overwhelmed the original inhabitants by the sheer force of their numbers but were smallish bands who conquered their new homes by their superiority in battle. Those original inhabitants--undoubtedly greatly superior in numbers--saw themselves forced to learn the respective languages (or still dialects of the Aryan conquerors. It is difficult to see how one can doubt that these substrata modified the newly acquired languages, and it stands to reason to assume that influences from vastly different substrata were one of the main causes for the conspicuous differentiation of the Aryan languages in even their most ancient known forms (Gessman 1990, p. 10)."

"Whichever the development may have been, we can see one thing clearly. Grimm's Law, the `Germanic Consonant Shift," has evaporated. The Proto-Aryan basis on which it had been predicated has vanished (Gessman 1990, p.12)."

Gessman, A. M. (1990). Grimm's law: fact of myth. Language Quarterly, 28:3-4, pp. 2-16.

"We (Caflisch) can agree with G (Gessman 1990) that the aspirated segments cannot be found in other branches, but that Dravidian languages even today in central and southern India have them; and some of these, e.g. Kannada, have retroflexed T-series [t, d, n], etc. After all, perhaps the vaunted romanticism of the Leipzig linguists should have included retroflex ion in their scheme for the I.E. segment inventory, but they did not. Connected with G's eight point (6) is the discussion relevant to possible vs. impossible phonological paradigmata.
The ninth point suggests a * P. I.E. (= G's "Proto-Aryan") pharyngeal series in the segment matrix; however I (Caflisch) claim a glottal zed series proposed also by other scholars such as A. R. Bomhard (1977), P. Hopper (1977), T. V. Gamkreldize (1975), and L. Hammerich (1967). One reason for glottalization is rather simple: it can apply only to voiceless segments which will mean that we can conveniently ||p|| on both physiological and typological grounds.
Also assumed under the rubric of this ninth point is G's long-held opinion that the substratum contamination (I prefer to call it cross-contamination or bilateral contamination) between *P. I.E. and *P. S. (Proto-Semitic) was most assuredly in force. In this connection Levin (1971) ought to be consulted and taken seriously. Could Hittite have been a quasi "buffer" culture between *I.E. (Hittite, despite G's claims about its amalgam status, continues to be recognized as *I.E. in structure.) and Semitic? After, all, Slavs were used by the Roman empire as a buffer culture (a "shock strip") between the latter and the threatening eastern nomadic tribes (Caflisch 1990, p. 19)."
"I (Caflisch) agree with G that, most assuredly. Languages are very easily contaminated through contacts, and even half-hearted acculturation (a kind of "passive acculturation" where speakers lack full motivation to assimilate within a cultural base) within G's substratum and superstratum complexes allows for it to lesser degree (Caflisch 1990, p.21)."
"In summarizing Gessman's article, I (Caflisch) point to several ideas which are indeed crucial to his arguments. Fist G, makes the bold claim against the interpretation of any cycle in Grimm's Law, without dismissing the actual linear changes that have occurred. G's longstanding theory of superstrata, adstrata, and substrata in language contacts and their subsequent tendencies toward contamination phenomena is indeed well taken here (Caflisch 1990, p. 24)."

Caflisch, J., Sr. (1990). Grimm's law revisited: a case for natural, typological phonology. Language Quarterly, 28 (3-4), pp. 17-28).

4-0 out of 5 stars Indo-European language & culture
I have been studying both linguistics and languages for years. I am particularly interested in historical linguistics. I would consider Forston's book to be a good, updated primer on the subject,especially for those interested and intrigued by Indo-European studies. ... Read more

4. The European Culture Area: A Systematic Geography, Fifth Edition
by Alexander B. Murphy, Terry G. Jordan-Bychkov, Bella Bychkova Jordan
Paperback: 442 Pages (2008-08-28)
list price: US$69.95 -- used & new: US$48.58
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Asin: 0742556727
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Now in a fully updated fifth edition, this premier text has been thoroughly revised to reflect the sweeping changes the past decade has brought to Europe. Long hailed for its creativity and intellectual depth, the book is now further enriched by the expertise of a new lead author, noted geographer Alexander B. Murphy. In this edition, he has focused on Europe's role in the wider world and incorporated new research and teaching approaches in regional geography. The topical organization_including environment, ethnicity, religion, language, demography, politics, industry, and urban and rural life_offers students a holistic understanding of the diverse European culture area. ... Read more

5. Encyclopedia of Blacks in European History and Culture [2 volumes]
by Eric Martone
Hardcover: 712 Pages (2008-12-08)
list price: US$199.95 -- used & new: US$133.97
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Asin: 0313344485
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Blacks have played a significant part in European civilization since ancient times. This encyclopedia illuminates blacks in European history, literature, and popular culture. It emphasizes the considerable scope of black influence in, and contributions to, European culture. The first blacks arrived in Europe as slaves and later as laborers and soldiers, and black immigrants today along with others are transforming Europe into multicultural states. This indispensable set expands our knowledge of blacks in Western civilization.

More than 350 essay entries introduce students and other readers to the white European response to blacks in their countries, the black experiences and impact there, and the major interactions between Europe and Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States that resulted in the settling of blacks in Europe. The range of information presented is impressive, with entries on noted European political, literary, and cultural figures of black descent from ancient times to the present, major literary works that had a substantial impact on European perceptions of blacks, black holidays and festivals, the struggle for civil equality for blacks, the role and influence of blacks in contemporary European popular culture, black immigration to Europe, black European identity, and much more. Offered as well are entries on organizations that contributed to the development of black political and social rights in Europe, representations of blacks in European art and cultural symbols, and European intellectual and scientific theories on blacks. Individual entries on Britain, Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Russia, Central Europe, Scandinavia, and Eastern Europe include historical overviews of the presence and contributions of blacks and discussion of country's role in the African slave trade and abolition and its colonies in Africa and the Caribbean. Suggestions for further reading accompany each entry. A chronology, resource guide, and photos complement the text.

... Read more

6. The Zenith of European Monarchy and its Elites: The Politics of Culture, 1650-1750 (European History in Perspective)
by Nicholas Henshall
Paperback: 304 Pages (2010-03-15)
list price: US$31.00 -- used & new: US$27.00
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Asin: 0333613910
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By the mid-sevententh century several European monarchies were collapsing. Focusing on a key elite bonding strategy, this new survey shows how monarchs resolved to work with, rather than against, their elites. Nicholas Henshall's synthesis offers an argument for the coherence of the period - as the height of European monarchy and its elites.
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7. The Culture of the Europeans: From 1800 to the Present
by Donald Sassoon
Hardcover: 1656 Pages (2006-09-04)
list price: US$54.95 -- used & new: US$29.95
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Asin: 0002558793
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Compelling, wide-ranging, and hugely ambitious, this book offers an integrated history of the culture produced and consumed by Europeans since 1800, and follows its transformation from an elite activity to a mass market—from lending libraries to the internet, from the first public concerts to music downloads. In itself a cultural tour de force, the book covers high and low culture, readers and writers, audiences and prima donnas, Rossini and hip hop, Verdi and the Beatles, Zola and Tintin, Walter Scott and Jules Verne, the serialized novel of the 19th century as well as Dallas and Coronation Street. Included in its vast scope are fairy tales, best-sellers, crime and sci-fi, non-fiction, magazines, newspapers, comic strips, plays, opera, musicals, pop music, sound recording, films, documentaries, radio, and television. A continent-wide survey, this majestic work includes discussions of rock music under communism, Polish and Danish bestsellers, French melodramas and German cabarets, fascist and Soviet cinema. It examines the ways culture travels—how it is produced, transformed, adapted, absorbed, sold, and consumed; how it is shaped by audiences and politics, and controlled by laws and conventional morality; and why some countries excel in particular genres. It examines the anxiety and attraction felt by Europeans towards American culture, and asks to what extent European culture has become Americanized. Stylishly written, devoid of jargon, this is global non-fiction narrative at its best.
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars A masterful,brilliant book !
As no-one has reviewed this book and I have just finished reading it I thought I would try to encourage others to buy this masterful book.
Let's not beat about the bush,this is a long book. A very long book. It has nearly 1400 pages of text without a single picture or illustration to hurry you along. As an aside, the hardbook edition falls into that uncomfortably too heavy to hold variety and I ended up reading this book propped up on the dining room table.
And I'm glad I did, because I found the book fascinating. This fascination was greatly facilitated by Sassoon's easy and fluent style. I won't say the pages flew by, it's not that kind of book, but it was never a book where three quarters of the way down the page I struggled to recall what I'd just been reading about. I think we all know those books.
So why read it ? Well if you have just a fleeting interest in the development of the European novel,newspapers,magazines,cinema,television, radio,clasical music and popular music then it is hard to conceive of a better place to start than this book. The detail is quite stunning. The major players in this narrative are initially the French and British with the shadow of the USA looming large over more or less the whole of the twentieth century. Along the way developments in Germany,Italy, Spain and Russia in particular are frequently aired. I didn't check but I'd imagine that most,if not all, European countries pop into the flow somewhere, but if you have a specialist interest in say the modern Latvian novel then obviously this is not the book for you. There had to be limits to what Sassoon could reasonably cover ! A great strength of the book is that all the time you come up against the fact that although some great artists transcend borders ( think Hugo, Beethoven, Agatha Christie ! etc ) there are always distinct national preferences at play and what makes it big in England doesn't necessarily do well in Italy. And, of course, vice versa. Sadly one of the recurrent themes of the book is how insular the English speaking countries are to the written cultures of other languages. This continues to this day where the UK and USA translate a minute amount of literature compared to other countries and similarily pop groups all over the world have had to sing in English if they want to gain international recognition.
I found Mr.Sassoon to be a very sympathetic and even-handed guide. There is no ranking of writers or composers here, but an attempt to explain what and who was popular in its day. Many of the names were unknown to me, which obviously makes you ponder as to the longevity of today's superstars. If they follow the pattern of so many examples in this book they will be consigned to the dustbin of history, to be resurrected no doubt someday by a twenty second century Sassoon-alike. I daresay we all have our favourites that we would willingly shove into the proverbial bin this very second !
The book finishes, as it should, with a consideration of the impact of modern technology.Here for instance,I was stunned to read that the computer game Grand Theft Auto grossed in the UK more than the latest Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings films in 2004.As someone who has hardly ever played computer games I found this statistic incredible. Thankfully develoments on the net are too recent for Sassoon to stun us with similar data, but he does ponder the likely influence it might have in the future on our culture. So obviously the book deserves a review employing this most modern means of communication. And yes he does mention the influence of Amazon's home reviewers ! So I just hope Mr.Sassoon has a peek to see if his book has been reviewd and that if he does he enjoys this review. ... Read more

8. Catholic Millenarianism: From Savonarola to the Abbé Grégoire (Millenarianism and Messianism in Early Modern European Culture, Vol. 2; International Archives of the History of Ideas, Vol. 174)
Hardcover: 144 Pages (2001-07-31)
list price: US$129.00 -- used & new: US$90.00
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Asin: 0792368495
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Over three hundred years ago, the paramount modern Catholicexegete, Cornelius a Lapide, S.J., wrote that the 25th of March, 2000,was the most likely date for the world to end. CatholicMillenarianism does not let the day pass without comment. Catholic Millenarianism offers an authoritative overview ofCatholic apocalyptic thought combined with detailed presentations byspecialists on nine major Catholic authors, such as Savonarola, Luisde Leon, and Antonio Vieira. With its companion volumes,Catholic Millenarianism illustrates a hold apocalyptic concernshad on intellectual life, particularly between 1500 and 1900, rivalingand influencing rationalism and skepticism.

Catholics do not ordinarily expect a messianic reign by earthly means.Catholic Millenarianism shows instead what is common to Catholicauthors: their preoccupation with the relationship between linguisticprophecies and the events they foretell. This makes the perspectivesoffered as surprisingly diverse as their particular times, and thebook itself interesting and worth repeated reading. ... Read more

9. Millenarianism and Messianism in Early Modern European Culture Volume III: The Millenarian Turn: Millenarian Contexts of Science, Politics and Everyday ... internationales d'histoire des idées)
Paperback: 224 Pages (2010-11-02)
list price: US$139.00 -- used & new: US$139.00
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Asin: 9048156645
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The influence of millenarian thinking upon Cromwell's England is well-known. The cultural and intellectual conceptions of the role of millenarian ideas in the `long' 18th century when, so the `official' story goes, the religious sceptics and deists of Enlightened England effectively tarred such religious radicalism as `enthusiasm' has been less well examined. This volume endeavors to revise this `official' story and to trace the influence of millenarian ideas in the science, politics, and everyday life of England and America in the 17th and 18th centuries.

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10. Heresy, Magic and Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe (European Culture and Society)
by Gary K. Waite
Paperback: 272 Pages (2003-09-06)
list price: US$38.00 -- used & new: US$18.95
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Asin: 0333754344
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Bringing together the fields of Reformation and witchcraft studies, Gary K. Waite reveals how the early-modern period's religious conflicts led to widespread confusion and uncertainty, against which alleged diabolical conspiracies served to reaffirm orthodoxy. As with the vicious persecution of Anabaptists, witch-hunting was a means of restoring belief in the veracity of official teachings about the supernatural realm. Waite argues that it was only when the authorities came to terms with religious pluralism that there was a corresponding decline in witch panics.
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Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Stimulating Work
The goal of this book is an ambitious one. Gary Waite seeks to explain the connections between the wrenching spiritual changes experienced by Christians during the Reformation and the growing intensity of witch-hunting at the same time. To do so, he tells us, is to enter into a contentious historical debate. Various scholars emphasize different factors in generating the "witch-craze" of the 16th and 17th centuries; what Waite does in this book is to strike a balance, recognizing the importance of social conflict and gender roles, but at the same time foregrounding the religious anxieties of the period.

Waite begins by exploring attitudes towards religious non-conformity and magic in the late Middle Ages. By the 13th century he notes that there was already deep concern among religious and secular authorities about the development of unorthodox sects; the Inquisition was formed and empowered to torture suspected heretics. But over the following centuries such practices failed to eradicate dissent or erase self-doubt among some orthodox Christians. For instance, the persistence of Judaism vexed some believers profoundly. Magic - the exercise of "preternatural" control over nature - remained popular not only among common folk, but among some members of the clergy as well. Heretics and Jews had long been attacked as the allies of Satan, but by the 15th century there was growing concern that magical practices also had diabolical implications. To make matters worse, many clergy detected a simultaneous rise in religious scepticism. Waite also notes that by this time witchcraft was increasingly associated with women. Even though it had often been male clerics who dabbled in such practices, women were believed to be mentally and physically more inclined to succumb to the devil's temptations.

In a climate of religious doubt and change, it was useful to deflect criticism of the established church by calling for greater vigilance against heretics, Jews, and witches. Waite contends, however, that witch-trials did not reach their peak until after the Protestant Reformation got fully underway, some time after this array of beliefs had taken shape. Why? Because the challenge of Reformers such as Luther and Calvin meant that more than ever, established beliefs were disputed. The religious fidelities of Europeans were up for grabs; Protestant leaders sought to win support, and the Catholic Church responded with a counter-offensive. In an atmosphere of intense religious conflict, many believed the final judgement must be at hand, which meant that religious communities had to be purified.

Carefully dissecting the complex religious mentalities of the Reformation, Waite notes that both Protestants and Catholics persecuted those who would not conform, be they skeptics, Jews, or sects such as the Anabaptists, linking all of them to diabolical conspiracy. But even after persecution of these groups had begun to run its course, the drive to extirpate Satan's minions endured. Projecting fears about heretics onto beliefs about the widespread practice of diabolical magic, witch-hunting intensified. Individual panics were often fuelled by social conflicts rooted in local communities, but within a framework of regimenting belief systems. Where the contest of beliefs and the desire to stamp out heretics was strong, such as in the south-western Holy Roman Empire, Switzerland, and France, so too was the proclivity for witch-hunting. By the same token, where religious conformity was more firmly established, or where confessional conflict was declining, there tended to be fewer witchcraft trials.

Waite's carefully constructed interpretation of the rise and fall of witch-hunting is characterized by vigor and clarity. The author provides rich quotations to allow readers to immerse themselves in a mental world which he views as "both comfortably familiar and fantastically strange." He also reminds us of the human cost of religious fanaticism, noting the desperation and bewilderment of those accused of witchcraft and forced to confess under torture. This book deserves to be widely read.

5-0 out of 5 stars A valuable contribution to Anabaptist history
In the context of the apocalyptic fervour that marked the sixteenth century, both witches and religious heretics such as Anabaptists were seen as members of diabolical conspiracies.Growing incertitude of such complicated doctrines as transubstantiation made it necessary for religious authorities to demonstrate the validity of their cosmological interpretation.What better proof than the pursuit of campaigns against these agents of the Devil?Gary Waite, known to scholars of Anabaptist history for his valuable work on David Joris, offers in this book an interesting explanation of religious persecution in early modern Europe.

Readers may ask if it is reasonable to posit a connection between heresy and witchcraft persecutions when the numbers for each are so radically different in scale.Waite cites William Monter, who has counted some 3000 executions for heresy.This number is a far cry from the 30-60 000 executions for witchcraft recently found by Brian Levack.Waite explains that Monter does not include figures for the Council of Blood or St. Bartholomew's Day massacres in his tally.The inclusion of these events, and Waite's rejection of higher numbers for witch executions as polemical inflation, brings the two persecutions more into line in terms of scale.

Waite traces understandings of the Devil, magic, heresy and witchcraft from the late middle ages through the Reformation to the early seventeenth century development of religious pluralism.Tremendous doubts about Catholic tenets existed among the populace well before the Protestant Reformation.Occasional miracles of bleeding Hosts were useful in bolstering religious belief.Persecution of Jews (and later, witches) for desecration of the Host and ritual murder of Christian children served to establish the reality of a diabolical realm operating within the human world.Authorities' use of language about the Devil was literal rather than metaphorical.Declining belief in the Devil's physical presence, together with the existence of Nicodemism and spiritualism, motivated persecutory efforts by both Catholics and Protestants to "counteract the expression of skepticism toward the approved understanding of the supernatural realm" (150).

Waite demonstrates that the "widespread preoccupation among members of all confessions and social levels with the nearness of apocalyptical judgment" strongly influenced secular and religious authorities' efforts to "persecute dissenters as agents of the Devil's final, apocalyptical assault on Christendom" (86).The increasing diversity of religious beliefs led to conflict just as dangerous as the more obvious violence of the Peasants' War and the Anabaptist kingdom of Münster.The emergence of Nicodemism further contributed to notions of diabolical conspiracy.Orthodoxy could only be preserved by rooting out these conspirators and consigning them to the flames.

With the successful suppression of heresy, this "demonizing rhetoric" was applied to other ostensible dissenters such as unruly women--witches.Anabaptism inadvertently was partially responsible for this persecutional shift.By acting as visionaries, prophets and informal house-church leaders, by divorcing non-Anabaptist husbands, abandoning families, participating in the polygamy and armed defense of Münster and running naked through the streets proclaiming apocalyptical judgment, Anabaptist women gained considerable notoriety as breakers of traditional gender roles and as examples of the effects of loosening the strictures limiting female behavior (117).The independence of Anabaptist women thus fed into later witch hunts.

Not all regions pursued witches with the same fervour.Waite gives careful attention to geographic differences.Witch hunts were most extensive in those regions experiencing the greatest religious conflict and which had held the most heresy trials.No serious witch hunts occurred in Mediterranean regions where Inquisitions were most active, however, because there was no longer major competition for the state church.Similarly, in regions like the Dutch Republic where there was no state church, there was also no perceived need for witch hunts.Waite provides some interesting comments on Anabaptist beliefs about witches.A number of Dutch Mennonites wrote against the witch hunts, arguing that the Devil had "an extremely limited role" in the world, a belief shared by the Dutch Collegiants.Both Anabaptists and Quakers "identified the Devil with their persecutors or spiritualized him altogether, in the process suppressing fear of witchcraft among their members" (193).

Why the ultimate acceptance of religious pluralism?Waite explains that witch persecutions ironically increased skepticism, and were largely abandoned at the same time as attempts to maintain confessional conformity.People came to realize that their sectarian neighbours presented no challenge to local order.Merchants began to appreciate that religious tolerance was necessary for trade.Authorities eventually acknowledged that doubt and dissidence were not necessarily threats to the existence of the state.Spiritualism and humanism spread from the Dutch Republic, promoting religious tolerance and resisting confessional conformity.

Waite has produced a highly readable book.The use of subtitles within chapters is often a sign of an inability to develop a coherent argument, but not in this case.The copy editing is remarkably clean; it is rare to find a book with virtually no typographical errors such as this one.A useful introductory chapter outlines the historiography of witchcraft for the neophyte, particularly of its intersection with the Reformation, and an extensive annotated bibliography provides greater detail.Throughout the work, Waite gives equal attention to elite convictions and popular beliefs.The remarkable cover artwork leaves the reviewer wishing that illustrations could have been included inside.Students wanting to understand Anabaptism within a wider historical context are recommended to read Waite's book.

1-0 out of 5 stars A poor synthesis
In Heresy, Magic, and Witchcraft in Early Modern Europe, Gary K. Waite attempts to tie together the various persecutions that took place in Early Modern Europe.Whether persecution was aimed against Christian heretics, witches, or Jews, its purpose was always the same: reinforcing current orthodoxy against growing doubt.Thus, Waite claims that the more pluralistic the society, the less fringe groups were persecuted.
This book is flawed.Waite argues his thesis tendentiously, citing portions of scholarship on Early Modern Europe that support his claims and ignoring scholarship that would question them.The book is a brief synthesis of other scholars' works, and Waite's contribution consists of mere assertions that lack supporting evidence.Waite does not engage the sources of Early Modern Europe; instead he trusts others to do the work of research for him.When he quotes a primary source, his citation is always from some secondary literature.This form of "researching" may be fine for a survey of the historiography, but Waite is attempting to argue a thesis.
Not only is his methodology wanting, but also his thesis is much too simplistic.Waite argues as societies become more pluralistic, persecution of the "Other" lessens.He cites example after example of how the reigning orthodoxy persecuted the "Other" in order to strengthen its position in society.Places like the Netherlands and Maria Theresa's Austria, however, did not persecute irrationally because of tolerance for a multiplicity of ideas.This formulation is inadequate.Waite fails to grapple with the religious situation in Spain in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.Spain was the most ethnically and religiously diverse region in Europe, and its variegated population managed a high level of cooperation for centuries.Instead of peaceful toleration, however, this region led to some of the most intense persecution of the "Other."
Waite's explanation of the Jewish situation in Early Modern Europe also has many problems.He asserts, "Jews ... were officially tolerated in the Christian west because they proved an extremely useful, if unwitting, ally in the campaign to expel religious doubt from the hearts of Christian believers" (19).As a causal claim, this statement is ludicrous.Waite implies a conspiracy by the Church to use Jews to quench Christian doubt.The evidence does not support this assertion.(His reasons for the persecution of women during the witch-hunts similarly lack evidentiary substantiation.)
Not only are Waite's methods and assertions suspect, but he lacks a fundamental understanding of the subject that he is trying to address.In the book's introduction, Waite writes, "Religion is always nonrational, for its tenets cannot be proven by empirical testing" (3).This statement belies a misunderstanding of rationalism, religion, or both.As a system of knowledge, rationalism is not dependent on evidence or empirical testing.Rationalism relies on human reason.Just as religion cannot be empirically tested, neither can mathematics.Rationalism and empiricism are competing systems of knowledge.Waite's conflation of the two demonstrates a positivist bent, and positivism is self-referentially absurd.Thus, Waite founds his philosophical approach to this subject upon a defective meta-narrative, and readers should be skeptical of his claims. ... Read more

11. Modernism as a Philosophical Problem: On theDissatisfactions of European High Culture
by Robert B. Pippin
Hardcover: 256 Pages (1999-11-01)
list price: US$104.95 -- used & new: US$92.20
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Asin: 0631214135
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Modernism as a Philosophical Problem,Second Edition presents an interpretation of the negative and critical self-understanding characteristic of culture since romanticism and especially since Nietzsche, and answers the question of why the issue of modernity became a philosophical problem in European tradition. Pippin defends an original re-narration of the development of modern philosophy, substantially different from that common in orthodox, postmodernist and critical theory discussions, and one much more sensitive to the radicality of the most complete expression and defense of a modernist self-understanding - the classical German Idealist tradition, especially the position defended by Hegel. This interpretation is the basis for the claim that no paradigm shift, ideology critique, or new way of thinking can dispense with or overcome such modernist aspirations. In fact, the author argues, one can still detect the persistence of such aspirations and commitments in some of the harshest modernity critics, in Nietzsche and in Heidegger especially. This unique and engaging view of modernity is an essential read for students, academics, and researchers studying Modernism, 20th Century Philosophy, Social Theory, and Hegel and German Idealism. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Rehabilitating Philosophical Modernity
If memory serves, Professor Pippin was awarded a MacArthur grant in 2001: $1.5 million over 3 years.Imagine: getting paid half a mil a year to write on things like the problem of human finitude and the possibility of self-determining and self-grounding spontaneous subjectivity (see p.13)!

This book is, quite simply, one of the best of its kind in the English language.Pippin seeks to provide a defense of the philosophical project of modernity, especially against the criticisms of Nietzsche, Heidegger, and their epigones.Pippin's project is thereby very similar to that of Habermas in The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity, but whereas Habermas seeks to accelerate modernity, as it were, Pippin seeks to return to what he considers its high point, the period dominated by German Idealism and, in particular, by Hegel.He states baldly in the Introduction to the 2nd edition that "the central practical issue at stake in debates about philosophy of the subject or of consciousness or of will, freedom and the possibility of a free life, has not been well posed and so has hardly been deconstructed, archeologically exposed, or destroyed" (xv).Needless to say, this thesis will be anathema to some and controversial to many.

I believe that Pippin delineates the terms of the basic philosophical problem quite well.For the sake of brevity, I will sketch that problem somewhat differently than Pippin himself does.It will lead us, however, to Pippin's argument.Lurking at the bottom of all philosophical disputes is the question of what it means to give an account of something.What are the relevant criteria (the epistemological Q)?But also, what are the necessary conditions for account giving to be possible (the transcendental Q)?And how can that question be answered in such a way that the answer presupposes nothing but itself?The very framing of the last question already sounds Hegelian.

The slight shifts in the framing of problem, from the epistemological to the transcendental to what I can only call the Hegelian question, coincides with the names Pippin uses to mark off the history of philosophy: Descartes, Kant, Hegel.According to Pippin, Kant initiates a profound change within the self-conception of philosophy.What Kant initiates Hegel completes in a more satisfactory manner than Kant himself does.Hegel's superiority to Kant is decided by his historicizing the transcendental unity of apperception.Hegel reconciles the two arguments of Kant's Third Antinomy, as it were.

It is just at this point that I find Pippin most unpersuasive.Pippin in effect sacrifices the Science of Logic upon the altar of history when he says that narrative must replace logic (Pippin's word is "rules")(p.68).But that disagreement cannot blind me to the quality of this book.Pippin writes in a mercifully accessible style, something much to be praised in a student of post-Kantian European philosophy.He is alive to the importance of the issues at stake.He is right to say that the philosophical project of modernity is practical in orientation.He is much too reserved to say in addition that the very possibility of philosophy, and of human wisdom, is at stake.

In short, this book is quite exceptional.For a counterpoint, I would recommend Stanley Rosen's Hermeneutics as Politics.Both Pippin and his teacher Rosen agree that Kant is the decisive figure of modern philosophy.They disagree as to whether Kant's revolution is boon or bane. ... Read more

12. Neo-Avantgarde and Culture Industry: Essays on European and American Art from 1955 to 1975 (October Books)
by Benjamin H. D. Buchloh
Paperback: 628 Pages (2003-04-01)
list price: US$41.95 -- used & new: US$27.58
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Asin: 0262523477
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Some critics view the postwar avant-garde as the empty recycling of forms and strategies from the first two decades of the twentieth century. Others view it, more positively, as a new articulation of the specific conditions of cultural production in the postwar period. Benjamin Buchloh, one of the most insightful art critics and theoreticians of recent decades, argues for a dialectical approach to these positions.This collection contains eighteen essays written by Buchloh over the last twenty years. Each looks at a single artist within the framework of specific theoretical and historical questions. The art movements covered include Nouveau R顬isme in France (Arman, Yves Klein, Jacques de la Villegl马 art in postwar Germany (Joseph Beuys, Sigmar Polke, Gerhard Richter), American Fluxus and pop art (Robert Watts and Andy Warhol), minimalism and postminimal art (Michael Asher and Richard Serra), and European and American conceptual art (Daniel Buren, Dan Graham). Buchloh addresses some artists in terms of their oppositional approaches to language and painting, for example, Nancy Spero and Lawrence Weiner. About others, he asks more general questions concerning the development of models of institutional critique (Hans Haacke) and the theorization of the museum (Marcel Broodthaers); or he addresses the formation of historical memory in postconceptual art (James Coleman).One of the book's strengths is its systematic, interconnected account of the key issues of American and European artistic practice during two decades of postwar art. Another is Buchlohs method, which integrates formalist and socio-historical approaches specific to each subject. ... Read more

13. Postcolonial Approaches to the European Middle Ages: Translating Cultures (Cambridge Studies in Medieval Literature)
Paperback: 314 Pages (2010-09-09)
list price: US$39.99 -- used & new: US$35.17
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Asin: 0521172276
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Ranging across a variety of academic disciplines, including art history, cartography, and Anglo-Saxon and Arabic studies, this volume highlights the connections between medieval and postcolonial studies through the exploration of a common theme: translation in its broadest sense as a mechanism of, and metaphor for, cultures in contact, confrontation and competition. The essays form a set of case studies of translation as the transfer of language, culture, and power. ... Read more

14. Indian Culture and European Trade Goods: The Archeology of the Historic Period in the Western Great Lakes Region
by George Irving Quimby
 Paperback: 232 Pages (1970-02-15)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$23.10
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Asin: 0299040747
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In an absorbing account of the archaeology and culture of Indian tribes in the Great Lakes region from 1600 to 1820, George Quimby recounts the results of decades of careful study of archaeological sites in this 1966 classic. ... Read more

15. European Culture in the Great War: The Arts, Entertainment and Propaganda, 1914-1918 (Studies in the Social and Cultural History of Modern Warfare)
Paperback: 442 Pages (2002-03-25)
list price: US$40.99 -- used & new: US$15.00
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Asin: 0521013240
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The First World War is commonly referred to as an historical watershed, and the nature of that great cataclysm's impact upon European society and culture remains a hotly debated topic. This book is a comparative study, with a broad coverage, enhanced by its interactive treatment of high culture, popular culture, and propaganda. ... Read more

16. Classical Influences on European Culture A.D. 500-1500
by R. R. Bolgar
Paperback: 352 Pages (2009-08-06)
list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$38.31
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Asin: 0521118131
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This volume consists of original papers first read at Kings College, Cambridge, in 1969 at the International Conference on Classical Influences. The contributors are distinguished in a wide range of academic disciplines but all are concerned in one way or another with the spread and influence of classical, particularly Roman, civilisation through a number of European cultures from AD 500 to 1500. The book begins with the manuscript tradition - the contents, location and history of the literary remains that provide the basic evidence on which all research in this subject must to some extent rely. This leads naturally to a discussion of what classical texts were actually read and studied, when, where and by whom. The majority of contributors go on to examine the Roman tradition as a positive cultural on language, literature, philosophy and art. Classical civilisation is shown to be a live historical force whose survival consists rather in the creative responses and developments it has inspired than in the mere preservation of its physical relics. ... Read more

17. The New European Cinema: Redrawing the Map (Film and Culture Series)
by Rosalind Galt PhD
Paperback: 352 Pages (2006-02-22)
list price: US$27.50 -- used & new: US$19.75
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Asin: 0231137176
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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New European Cinema offers a compelling response to the changing cultural shapes of Europe, charting political, aesthetic, and historical developments through innovative readings of some of the most popular and influential European films of the 1990s. Made around the time of the revolutions of 1989 but set in post-World War II Europe, these films grapple with the reunification of Germany, the disintegration of the Balkans, and a growing sense of historical loss and disenchantment felt across the continent. They represent a period in which national borders became blurred and the events of the mid-twentieth-century began to be reinterpreted from a multinational European perspective.

Featuring in-depth case studies of films from Italy, Germany, eastern Europe, and Scandinavia, Rosalind Galt reassesses the role that nostalgia, melodrama, and spectacle play in staging history. She analyzes Giuseppe Tornatore'sCinema Paradiso, Michael Radford'sIl Postino, Gabriele Salvatores'sMediterraneo, Emir Kusturica'sUnderground, and Lars von Trier'sZentropa, and contrasts them with films of the immediate postwar era, including the neorealist films of Roberto Rossellini and Vittorio De Sica, socialist realist cinema in Yugoslavia, Billy Wilder'sA Foreign Affair, and Carol Reed'sThe Third Man. Going beyond the conventional focus on national cinemas and heritage, Galt's transnational approach provides an account of how post-Berlin Wall European cinema inventively rethought the identities, ideologies, image, and popular memory of the continent. By connecting these films to political and philosophical debates on the future of Europe, as well as to contemporary critical and cultural theories, Galt redraws the map of European cinema.

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Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Interesting perspective on European Cinema
An interesting and intelligent read, aimed at academia but with much to offer the informed layman, Galt's book addresses an area of film theory that so far seems to have merited little discussion. While focusing on films of the 90s, the book's ideas remain topical, and will have you looking at some old favourites with a fresh and newly-informed perspective.

4-0 out of 5 stars a double perspective
Galt gives us a strange double perspective in her analysis of European films. These were mostly made around 1990, as communism collapsed in eastern Europe. And they were mostly made by people in those countries. But the settings of the films tended to be in World War 2 or in the immediate aftermath. The doubleness of the analysis is given by her book being written presumably shortly before the book was published in 2006. This 15 year lapse gives another temporal distance, that aids in the objectivity of the analysis.

What we see in the movies is that they were made in a time that was consciously aware of its historic significance. As a transition between eras. Between the Cold War and whatever would come after it. Hence, Galt choose to look at the movies set at the end of World War 2. She reads in them a subtext that just as those were at the end of another era, so too was this used as a thematic vehicle for the hopes (and fears) of 1990. ... Read more

18. Subjugated Animals: Animals And Anthropocentrism in Early Modern European Culture
by Nathaniel Wolloch
Paperback: 280 Pages (2006-11-01)
list price: US$39.00 -- used & new: US$2.99
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Asin: 1591024943
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This book is a study of attitudes toward animals in early modern Western culture. Emphasizing the influence of anthropocentrism on attitudes toward animals, historian Nathaniel Wolloch traces the various ways in which animals were viewed, from predominantly anti-animal thinking to increasingly pro-animal sentiments and viewpoints.
Wolloch devotes a chapter each to six major themes: early modern philosophical perspectives on animals till the end of the seventeenth century, pro-animal opinions in the eighteenth-century, the connection between attitudes toward animals and the early modern debate about the existence of extraterrestrial life, scientific modes of discussing animals, the role of animals in early modern anthropomorphic literature, and depictions of animals in seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish painting.

He concludes his broad, interdisciplinary study by linking these historical trends to the modern discussion of animal rights and ecological issues. ... Read more

19. Communicating Cultures: European Studeis in Culture and Policy (European Studies in Culture and Policy)
by Ullrich Kockel, Mairead Craith
Paperback: 304 Pages (2005-08-01)
list price: US$39.95 -- used & new: US$39.95
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Asin: 3825866432
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20. Trials of Europeanization: Turkish Political Culture and the European Union
by Ioannis N. Grigoriadis
Paperback: 256 Pages (2010-10-26)
list price: US$30.00 -- used & new: US$20.25
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Asin: 0230104975
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This book examines the impact of improving EU-Turkey relations on Turkish political culture since Turkey became a candidate for EU membership in 1999. While a multi-party political system was introduced in Turkey in 1946, political liberalism was the missing part of Turkey’s democratic consolidation. Turkish political culture valued submissiveness toward state authority and did not favor citizen participation. This study evaluates the impact that Turkey’s EU-motivated political reform had on civil society, state-society relations, the role of religion in politics and national identity. This leads to an assessment of whether Turkish political culture has become more participant and democratic.

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