A History of the World

Tracing the evolution of global society from prehistoric times to the present, this innovative six-volume history of an interconnected world offers an exciting challenge to traditional understandings of familiar events and eras. Eschewing the customary encyclopedic approach of myriad short entries, each volume offers substantive interpretive essays by prominent historians who systematically explore developments and trends within a global historical framework. This integrated history is a joint publication of Harvard University Press and C. H. Beck.

Below is a list of in-print works in this collection, presented in series order or publication order as applicable.

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1.Cover: Making Civilizations: The World before 600

Making Civilizations: The World before 600

Gehrke, Hans-Joachim

From the series A History of the World, Making Civilizations traces the origins of large-scale organized human societies. Led by archaeologist Hans-Joachim Gehrke, a distinguished group of scholars lays out latest findings about Neanderthals, the Agrarian Revolution, the founding of imperial China, the world of Western classical antiquity, and more.

3.Cover: Empires and Encounters: 1350–1750

Empires and Encounters: 1350–1750

Reinhard, Wolfgang

Between 1350 and 1750 the world reached a tipping point of global connectedness. In this volume of the acclaimed series A History of the World, noted international scholars examine five critical geographical areas where exploration and empire building led to expanding interaction—early signals on every continent of a shrinking globe.

4.Cover: An Emerging Modern World: 1750–1870

An Emerging Modern World: 1750–1870

Conrad, Sebastian
Osterhammel, Jürgen

For most of human history, states and regions were connected by long-distance commerce and war, yet they developed essentially separately. The century after 1750 marked a major shift. An Emerging Modern World, fourth in the six-volume series A History of the World, charts this transformative period outside the West.

5.Cover: A World Connecting: 1870–1945

A World Connecting: 1870–1945

Rosenberg, Emily S.

Between 1870 and 1945, advances in communication and transportation simultaneously expanded and shrank the world. In five interpretive essays, A World Connecting goes beyond nations, empires, and world wars to capture the era’s defining feature: the profound and disruptive shift toward an ever more rapidly integrating world.

6.Cover: Global Interdependence: The World after 1945

Global Interdependence: The World after 1945

Iriye, Akira

Global Interdependence provides a new account of world history from the end of WWII to the present, an era when transnational communities challenged the long domination of the nation-state. Leading scholars elucidate the political, economic, cultural, and environmental forces that have shaped the planet in the past sixty years.

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Neutron Stars: The Quest to Understand the Zombies of the Cosmos, by Katia Moskvitch, from Harvard University Press

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Jacket: Atomic Doctors: Conscience and Complicity at the Dawn of the Nuclear Age, by James L. Nolan, Jr., from Harvard University Press

Remembering Hiroshima

On this day 75 years ago, the United States dropped the world’s first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. James L. Nolan Jr.’s grandfather was a doctor who participated in the Manhattan Project, and he writes about him in Atomic Doctors: Conscience and Complicity at the Dawn of the Nuclear Age, an unflinching examination of the moral and professional dilemmas faced by physicians who took part in the project. Below, please find the introduction to Nolan’s book. On the morning of June 17, 1945, Captain James F. Nolan, MD, boarded a plane