The Pursuit of Italy

A History of a Land, Its Regions, and Their Peoples

Author: David Gilmour

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 1466801549

Category: History

Page: 480

View: 4045

One of The Economist's 2011 Books of the Year Did Garibaldi do Italy a disservice when he helped its disparate parts achieve unity? Was the goal of political unification a mistake? These questions are asked and answered in a number of ways in this engaging, original consideration of the many histories that contribute to the brilliance-and weakness-of Italy today. David Gilmour's wonderfully readable exploration of Italian life over the centuries is filled with provocative anecdotes as well as personal observations, and is peopled with the great figures of the Italian past-from Cicero and Virgil to Dante and the Medicis, from Garibaldi and Cavour to the controversial politicians of the twentieth century. Gilmour's wise account of the Risorgimento, the pivotal epoch in modern Italian history, debunks the nationalistic myths that surround it, though he paints a sympathetic portrait of Giuseppe Verdi, a beloved hero of the era. Gilmour shows that the glory of Italy has always lain in its regions, with their distinctive art, civic cultures, identities, and cuisines. Italy's inhabitants identified themselves not as Italians but as Tuscans and Venetians, Sicilians and Lombards, Neapolitans and Genoese. Italy's strength and culture still come from its regions rather than from its misconceived, mishandled notion of a unified nation. With The Pursuit of Italy, David Gilmour has provided a coherent, persuasive, and entertaining interpretation of the paradoxes of Italian life, past and present.
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The Pursuit of Italy

A History of a Land, Its Regions, and Their Peoples

Author: David Gilmour

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141043415

Category: Italy

Page: 447

View: 8214

David Gilmour's captivating history tells the story of Italy from Virgil to Verdi and on to today. Filled with colourful figures, vivid detail and personal observations based on a lifelong love of Italy, it also debunks many of the myths surrounding the country. Gilmour shows that Italy's glory comes not from a unified national identity, but from its regions, with their distinctive art, cuisine, civic cultures and traditions. 'The best one-volume history of Italy now available . . . has the same tonic, exhilarating impact as the thigh-slapping overture to a Verdi opera.' Jonathan Keates, Literary Review 'Lucid and elegant, clever and provocative . . . Tracing Italy's history from Romulus and Remus to the misdemeanours of Silvio Berlusconi, Gilmour develops his thesis with wit, style, and a great deal of learning.' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times 'Elegantly written, stimulating, up-to-date.' Tony Barber, Financial Times, Books of the Year 'Wonderful . . . riveting . . . no better history book was published this year.' Geoffrey Wheatcroft, Observer, Books of the Year 'A witty guide with an elegant prose style and a mind delightfully furnished with anecdotes and dictums, sensual impressions and conversations. Its prose smells of a convivial meal eaten below a pergola in the Pisan hills.' Lucy Hughes-Hallett, Sunday Telegraph
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The Pursuit of Italy

A History of a Land, Its Regions and Their Peoples

Author: David Gilmour

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 1846142512

Category: History

Page: 447

View: 3251

Visiting a villa built by Lorenzo dé Medici outside Pisa, David Gilmour fell into conversation about the unification of Italy with a distinguished former minister: '"You know, Davide," he said in a low conspiratorial voice, as if uttering a heresy, "Garibaldi did Italy a great disservice. If he had not invaded Sicily and Naples, we in the north would have the richest and most civilized state in Europe." After looking cautiously round the room he added in an even lower voice, "Of course to the south we would have a neighbour like Egypt."' Was the elderly Italian right? Was the unification of Italy a mistake? The Pursuit of Italy traces the whole history of the Italian peninsula in a wonderfully readable style, full of well-chosen stories and observations from personal experience, and peopled by many of the great figures of the Italian past, from Cicero and Virgil to Dante and the Medici, from Cavour and Verdi to the controversial political figures of the twentieth century. The book gives a clear-eyed view of the Risorgimento, the pivotal event in modern Italian history, debunking the influential myths which have grown up around it. Gilmour shows that the glory of Italy has always lain in its regions, with their distinctive art, civic cultures, identities and cuisine. The regions produced the medieval communes and the Renaissance, the Venetian Republic and the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, two of the most civilized states of European history. Their inhabitants identified themselves not as Italians, but as Tuscans and Venetians, Sicilians and Lombards, Neapolitans and Genoese. This is where the strength and culture of Italy still comes from, rather than from misconceived and mishandled concepts of nationalism and unity. This wise and enormously engaging book explains the course of Italian history in a manner and with a coherence which no one with an interest in the country could fail to enjoy.
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A Concise History of Italy

Author: Christopher Duggan

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 0521760399

Category: History

Page: 360

View: 2799

Comprehensively updated new edition of Christopher Duggan's acclaimed introduction to the history of Italy.
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The Risorgimento and the Unification of Italy

Author: Derek Beales,Eugenio F. Biagini

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317878566

Category: History

Page: 314

View: 320

This book introduces the reader to the relationship between the Italian national movement, achieved by the Risorgimento, and the Italian unification in 1860. These themes are discussed in detail and related to the broader European theatre. Covering the literary, cultural, religious and political history of the period, Beales and Biagini show Italy struggled towards nation state status on all fronts. The new edition has been thoroughly rewritten. It also contains a number of new documents. In addition, all the most up to date research of the last 20 years has been incorporated. The Risorgimento and the Unification of Italy remains the major text on nineteenth century Italy. The long introduction and useful footnotes will be of real assistance to those interested in Italian unification.
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Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo

Author: Tim Parks

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393348822

Category: Transportation

Page: 288

View: 7237

An Italian travelogue describes the trains that traverse the country, from the architecture of old train stations to the new high-speed railways, and portrays the author's memorable encounters along the way.
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The Force of Destiny

A History of Italy Since 1796

Author: Christopher Duggan

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 9780618353675

Category: History

Page: 652

View: 9199

A sweeping history of Italy describes the turbulent birth of a unified modern nation during the first half of the nineteenth century, its destructive role during World War I, the rise of Mussolini and authoritarianism in the 1920s and 1930s, its defeat during World War II, and the legacy of its tempestuous history for modern-day Italy.
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The Italians

Author: John Hooper

Publisher: Penguin Books

ISBN: 014312840X

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 1971

Explores the history, culture, and religion of the Italian people, shedding new light on many aspects of Italian life.
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Italy

A Short History

Author: Harry Hearder,Jonathan Morris

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521000727

Category: History

Page: 294

View: 2036

Presents a clear, concise account of Italian history from the Ice Age to the present.
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The Dark Heart of Italy

Author: Tobias Jones

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 9780865477247

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 2036

The author describes his shattering experience of moving to Italy only to find his visions of paradise crushed under the reality of a nation gripped by terrorism, political ineptitude, and cultural upheaval. Reprint.
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The Pursuit of Power

Europe 1815-1914

Author: Richard J. Evans

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0735221219

Category: History

Page: 848

View: 2686

An Economist Best Book of the Year “Sweeping . . . an ambitious synthesis . . . [Evans] writes with admirable narrative power and possesses a wonderful eye for local color . . . Fascinating.”—Stephen Schuker, The Wall Street Journal From the bestselling author of The Third Reich at War, a masterly account of Europe in the age of its global hegemony; the latest volume in the Penguin History of Europe series Richard J. Evans, bestselling historian of Nazi Germany, returns with a monumental new addition to the acclaimed Penguin History of Europe series, covering the period from the fall of Napoleon to the outbreak of World War I. Evans’s gripping narrative ranges across a century of social and national conflicts, from the revolutions of 1830 and 1848 to the unification of both Germany and Italy, from the Russo-Turkish wars to the Balkan upheavals that brought this era of relative peace and growing prosperity to an end. Among the great themes it discusses are the decline of religious belief and the rise of secular science and medicine, the journey of art, music, and literature from Romanticism to Modernism, the replacement of old-regime punishments by the modern prison, the end of aristocratic domination and the emergence of industrial society, and the dramatic struggle of feminists for women’s equality and emancipation. Uniting the era’s broad-ranging transformations was the pursuit of power in all segments of life, from the banker striving for economic power to the serf seeking to escape the power of his landlord, from the engineer asserting society’s power over the environment to the psychiatrist attempting to exert science’s power over human nature itself. The first single-volume history of the century, this comprehensive and sweeping account gives the reader a magnificently human picture of Europe in the age when it dominated the rest of the globe.
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The History of Italy

Author: Francesco Guicciardini

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Italy

Page: N.A

View: 4578

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The British in India

Three Centuries of Ambition and Experience

Author: David Gilmour

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0241004535

Category: History

Page: 640

View: 4744

The British in this book lived in India from shortly a er the reign of Elizabeth I until well into the reign of Elizabeth II. Who were they? What drove these men and women to risk their lives on long voyages down the Atlantic and across the Indian Ocean or later via the Suez Canal? And when they got to India, what did they do and how did they live? This book explores the lives of the many different sorts of Briton who went to India: viceroys and offcials, soldiers and missionaries, planters and foresters, merchants, engineers, teachers and doctors. It evokes the three and a half centuries of their ambitions and experiences, together with the lives of their families, recording the diversity of their work and their leisure, and the complexity of their relationships with the peoples of India. It also describes the lives of many who did not t in with the usual image of the Raj: the tramps and rascals, the men who 'went native', the women who scorned the role of the traditional memsahib. David Gilmour has spent decades researching in archives, studying the papers of many people who have never been written about before, to create a magni cent tapestry of British life in India. is exceptional work of scholarly recovery portrays individuals with understanding and humour, and makes an original and engaging contribution to a long and important period of British and Indian history.
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Garibaldi and His Enemies

The Clash of Arms and Personalities in the Making of Italy

Author: Christopher Hibbert

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Italy

Page: 423

View: 7605

Story of the people and events associated with Garibaldi's career, and his personal leadership during the invasion of conquest of Sicily and southern Italy.
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The Ruling Caste

Imperial Lives in the Victorian Raj

Author: David Gilmour

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 1466830018

Category: History

Page: 416

View: 6227

A sparkling, provocative history of the English in South Asia during Queen Victoria's reign Between 1837 and 1901, less than 100,000 Britons at any one time managed an empire of 300 million people spread over the vast area that now includes India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Burma. How was this possible, and what were these people like? The British administration in India took pride in its efficiency and broad-mindedness, its devotion to duty and its sense of imperial grandeur, but it has become fashionable to deprecate it for its arrogance and ignorance. In this balanced, witty, and multi-faceted history, David Gilmour goes far to explain the paradoxes of the "Anglo-Indians," showing us what they hoped to achieve and what sort of society they thought they were helping to build. The Ruling Caste principally concerns the officers of the legendary India Civil Service--each of whom to perform as magistrate, settlement officer, sanitation inspector, public-health officer, and more for the million or so people in his charge. Gilmour extends his study to every level of the administration and to the officers' women and children, so often ignored in previous works. The Ruling Caste is the best book yet on the real trials and triumphs of an imperial ruling class; on the dangerous temptations that an empire's power encourages; on relations between governor and governed, between European and Asian. No one interested in politics and social history can afford to miss this book.
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Modern Italy

A Political History

Author: Denis Mack Smith

Publisher: University of Michigan Press

ISBN: 9780472108954

Category: History

Page: 534

View: 7341

A new edition of the classic historical text on Italy
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Garibaldi

Author: Lucy Riall

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300176511

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 496

View: 2339

Giuseppe Garibaldi, the Italian revolutionary leader and popular hero, was among the best-known figures of the nineteenth century. This book seeks to examine his life and the making of his cult, to assess its impact, and understand its surprising success. For thirty years Garibaldi was involved in every combative event in Italy. His greatest moment came in 1860, when he defended a revolution in Sicily and provoked the collapse of the Bourbon monarchy, the overthrow of papal power in central Italy, and the creation of the Italian nation state. It made him a global icon, representing strength, bravery, manliness, saintliness, and a spirit of adventure. Handsome, flamboyant, and sexually attractive, he was worshiped in life and became a cult figure after his death in 1882. Lucy Riall shows that the emerging cult of Garibaldi was initially conceived by revolutionaries intent on overthrowing the status quo, that it was also the result of a collaborative effort involving writers, artists, actors, and publishers, and that it became genuinely and enduringly popular among a broad public. The book demonstrates that Garibaldi played an integral part in fashioning and promoting himself as a new kind of “charismatic” political hero. It analyzes the way the Garibaldi myth has been harnessed both to legitimize and to challenge national political structures. And it identifies elements of Garibaldi’s political style appropriated by political leaders around the world, including Mussolini and Che Guevara.
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La Bella Figura

A Field Guide to the Italian Mind

Author: Beppe Severgnini

Publisher: Broadway Books

ISBN: 0307486877

Category: Travel

Page: 240

View: 4827

Join the bestselling author of Ciao, America! on a lively tour of modern Italy that takes you behind the seductive face it puts on for visitors—la bella figura—and highlights its maddening, paradoxical true self You won’t need luggage for this hypothetical and hilarious trip into the hearts and minds of Beppe Severgnini’s fellow Italians. In fact, Beppe would prefer if you left behind the baggage his crafty and elegant countrymen have smuggled into your subconscious. To get to his Italia, you’ll need to forget about your idealized notions of Italy. Although La Bella Figura will take you to legendary cities and scenic regions, your real destinations are the places where Italians are at their best, worst, and most authentic: The highway: in America, a red light has only one possible interpretation—Stop! An Italian red light doesn’t warn or order you as much as provide an invitation for reflection. The airport: where Italians prove that one of their virtues (an appreciation for beauty) is really a vice. Who cares if the beautiful girls hawking cell phones in airport kiosks stick you with an outdated model? That’s the price of gazing upon perfection. The small town: which demonstrates the Italian genius for pleasant living: “a congenial barber . . . a well-stocked newsstand . . . professionally made coffee and a proper pizza; bell towers we can recognize in the distance, and people with a kind word and a smile for everyone.” The chaos of the roads, the anarchy of the office, the theatrical spirit of the hypermarkets, and garrulous train journeys; the sensory reassurance of a church and the importance of the beach; the solitude of the soccer stadium and the crowded Italian bedroom; the vertical fixations of the apartment building and the horizontal democracy of the eat-in kitchen. As you venture to these and many other locations rooted in the Italian psyche, you realize that Beppe has become your Dante and shown you a country that “has too much style to be hell” but is “too disorderly to be heaven.” Ten days, thirty places. From north to south. From food to politics. From saintliness to sexuality. This ironic, methodical, and sentimental examination will help you understand why Italy—as Beppe says—“can have you fuming and then purring in the space of a hundred meters or ten minutes.”
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The Land Where Lemons Grow

The Story of Italy and its Citrus Fruit

Author: Helena Attlee

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141967862

Category: Travel

Page: 272

View: 9051

Travellers have always been thrilled by the sight of citrus in Italy, where dark leaves and bright fruit seem to charge the landscape, making the trees symbols of a sun-soaked, poetic vision of the country. Citrus also holds a special place in the Italian imagination, and in The Land Where Lemons Grow, Helena Attlee sets out to explore its curious past and its enduring resonance in Italian culture. Building on a life of travel and work in Italy, she undertakes a journey encompassing the sticky streets of Ivrea during the Battle of Oranges, the comfortable gardens of Tuscany's villas and a magic triangle of land in Sicily, where the best blood oranges in the world grow in the shadow of a volcano. She maps the citron's long migration from the foothills of the Himalayas to the shores of southern Italy, traces the bitter juice of Seville oranges through ancient Roman and Renaissance cookery books, exposes early manifestations of the Mafia during the nineteenth-century citrus boom, and laments the loss of landscapes shaped by citrus cultivation. The book is a celebration of the unique qualities of Italy's citrus fruit, from bergamot that will thrive only on a short stretch of coastline, to Calabria's Diamante citrons, vital to Jews all over the world during the celebration of Sukkoth. The Land Where Lemons Grow is a heady mixture of travel writing, history, horticulture and art; a unique journey through Italy's cultural, culinary and political past. Helena Attlee is the author of four books about Italian gardens, and others on the cultural history of gardens around the world. Helena is a Fellow of the Royal Literary Fund and has worked in Italy for nearly 30 years.
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A History of Italy

Author: Claudia Baldoli

Publisher: Macmillan International Higher Education

ISBN: 1137013664

Category: History

Page: 256

View: 496

Until the beginning of the eighteenth century, to be 'Italian' meant to identify with a number of collective memories, rather than a national memory. Yet there are elements of continuity that have shaped Italian identity over the past 1,500 years. Religion, food, art and architecture, a literary language, as well as a particular relationship between cities and countryside, between family and civil society have all contributed to present day Italian culture and politics. Baldoli explores the history of Italy as a country, rather than as a nation, in order to trace its fascinating cultural and political development. Offering a way into each period of Italian history, the book brings Italy's past to life with extracts from poetry, novels and music. Drawing on the latest research published in English and Italian, this is the ideal introduction for all those interested in Italy's cultural and social past and its significance for the country's present.
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