New PDF release: A Man Of Contradictions: A Life Of A. L. Rowse

By Richard Ollard

ISBN-10: 0571302866

ISBN-13: 9780571302864

He proclaimed himself a genius and raged opposed to the slightest feedback from fellow students; he was once a Marxist who despised the 'Idiot People'; he might be beneficiant and affectionate but hurled insults at his pals; he inveighed opposed to Puritanism yet was once himself in lots of methods a Puritan: A. L. Rowse used to be a guy of many contradictions.

during this clear-sighted and soaking up biography, Richard Ollard examines the numerous facets of Rowse's Protean character to bare a guy who, no matter what he was once responding to - public affairs, the humanities, typical good looks or occasions in his own existence - did so with large strength and passion.

'An urbane research of the prestigious historian.' Antonia Fraser, Daily Mail

'Strikes an ideal stability among the Jekyll Rowse and the Hyde Rowse.' Bevis Hillier, Spectator

'Excellent.' Katherine Duncan-Jones, TLS

Show description

By Richard Ollard

ISBN-10: 0571302866

ISBN-13: 9780571302864

He proclaimed himself a genius and raged opposed to the slightest feedback from fellow students; he was once a Marxist who despised the 'Idiot People'; he might be beneficiant and affectionate but hurled insults at his pals; he inveighed opposed to Puritanism yet was once himself in lots of methods a Puritan: A. L. Rowse used to be a guy of many contradictions.

during this clear-sighted and soaking up biography, Richard Ollard examines the numerous facets of Rowse's Protean character to bare a guy who, no matter what he was once responding to - public affairs, the humanities, typical good looks or occasions in his own existence - did so with large strength and passion.

'An urbane research of the prestigious historian.' Antonia Fraser, Daily Mail

'Strikes an ideal stability among the Jekyll Rowse and the Hyde Rowse.' Bevis Hillier, Spectator

'Excellent.' Katherine Duncan-Jones, TLS

Show description

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Extra resources for A Man Of Contradictions: A Life Of A. L. Rowse

Sample text

This book is intended to explore a number of general propositions about history and historians, rather than provide a point of entry into any one field or specialism. But since I anticipate that most of my readers will be more familiar with British history than any other, I have relied for my illustrative material mostly on that field, with some additional examples from Africa, Europe and the United States. The book is meant to be read as a whole, but I have included a certain amount of cross-referencing in the text to assist the reader who wishes to pursue only one theme.

Less obviously but even more importantly, the difference is one of mentality: earlier generations had different values, priorities, fears and hopes from our own. We may take the beauties of nature for granted, but medieval men and women were terrified of forests and mountains and strayed from the beaten track as little as possible. 11 During the same period public hangings in London regularly drew crowds of 30,000 or more, both rich and poor, and usually more women than men. 12 More recent periods may not be so strange, but we still have to be alert to many evidences of difference.

Nation, race and culture are brought together as a unified constant. Other examples span the modern world from the Nazis in Germany to the ideology of black separatism in the United States. Essentialism or ‘immemorialism’ of this kind produces a powerful sense of exclusive identity, but it makes bad history. Not only is everything in the past that contradicts the required self-image suppressed; the interval between ‘then’ and ‘now’ is telescoped by the assertion of an unchanging identity, impervious to the play of historical circumstance.

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A Man Of Contradictions: A Life Of A. L. Rowse by Richard Ollard


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