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Power : A Political History of the 20th Century

The political history of the 20th century has been marked by a number of central themes: the growth of the superpowers, the evolution of a single world community, in which every dispute and issue impinges on people across the globe, and, above all, the escalation in violence and horror which has brought death and destruction on a scale unimaginable when the century began.

Power, the second volume in Harrap’s Illustrated History of the 20th Century, traces these themes through the complex political history of the world right up the present day. Breaking the century down into six periods, the authors pinpoint the developments crucial to the central power-political struggle, and present the background to stories that were to explode on the world stage at a later date.

Inevitably, a political history of the world in the 20th century gives centre-stage to the great powers and, since 1945, to the superpowers. Their machinations are clearly presented against the broad backcloth of political movements of the time - both domestic and international – whilst their global ambitions are linked to events in countries all over the world.

Arresting photographs and attractive, original maps amplify the text, highlighting key points of the argument and illustrating important developments. Individual chapters are supplemented by boxed features analysing related themes, such as the ideologies - whether communism and fascism, apartheid or ecology – that provide a background to the events of the period. Twelve special feature spreads support this analysis, identifying issues that have spanned the century and drawing together themes in human history from all over the globe.

Further reference is provided in easily accessible data-files and the book contains six chronological tables for quick reference, plus biographies of more than 150 of the world’s leading political figures.

Harrap, 1990, 256 pages, illustrated
Oxford University Press, New York, 1990, 256 pages, illustrated
Also printed in Japanese

Contributors: Sir Julian Bullard, Peter Carey, Christine Collette, Malcolm Cooper, Michael Geyer, Robert Gildea, Anthony Glees, Roger Griffin, Matthew Jones, Paul Kennedy, Wolfgang Krieger, Dermot MacCann, Roger Morgan, A.J. Nicholls, Gowher Rizvi, Harry Shukman, Stanley Trapido, Paul Wilkinson, Roger Zetter


American Print


Japanese translation