Brilliantly conceived and majestically written, this monumental work of European history recasts the five-hundred-year history of Germany.
With Germany in the World, award-winning historian David Blackbourn radically revises conventional narratives of German history, demonstrating the existence of a distinctly German presence in the world centuries before its unification—and revealing a national identity far more complicated than previously imagined. Blackbourn traces Germany’s evolution from the loosely bound Holy Roman Empire of 1500 to a sprawling colonial power to a twenty-first-century beacon of democracy. Viewed through a global lens, familiar landmarks of German history—the Reformation, the Revolution of 1848, the Nazi regime—are transformed, while others are unearthed and explored, as Blackbourn reveals Germany’s leading role in creating modern universities and its sinister involvement in slave-trade economies. A global history for a global age, Germany in the World is a bold and original account that upends the idea that a nation’s history should be written as though it took place entirely within that nation’s borders.
About the Author
David Blackbourn is the Cornelius Vanderbilt Distinguished Chair of History Emeritus at Vanderbilt University. The author of seven books, including Marpingen: Apparitions of the Virgin Mary and The Conquest of Nature: Water, Landscape, and the Making of Modern Germany, he lives in Nashville, Tennessee.
A rich and full-throated account of the past 500 years . . . From the intellectual giants who enriched the west to the descent into dictatorship and war, the story of Germany’s global impact – up to its modern rebirth – is told with real verve. — Neal Ascherson - The Guardian
[An] all-embracing history of Germany's relationship with the outside world . . . readers of this book will never see Germany in quite the same way again. — The Economist
Ambitious . . . there’s no getting around Germany’s pivotal place in the world, and Blackbourn ably demonstrates how and why that position has been maintained, for better and worse. A compelling exploration of ‘German history viewed through a global lens.' — Kirkus Reviews
Blackbourn’s elegant writing and intriguing insights make for an insightful and stimulating take on German history. — Publishers Weekly