I really enjoy a good audio book, -mostly lectures, mostly History. I enjoy the philology, archeology as well.
Because of the Professors skillful delivery I'll definitely be giving this title another listen. This lectures series will round out your timeline with useful details that make it easier to parse the bigger picture.
Highly recommend this title to anyone who loves History.
I will be listening to this one again! It's hard to soak up all that information in one listening. and it was fun to listen to so it wouldn't be painful to do it again,
Professor Robert Garland's did a great job keeping me interested.
This listen is packed with information, it is not just a one time around listen. Disadvantage is Robert Garland himself, who just can't see to relax and speak normally - sometimes I thought he was out of breath and other times searching for his place in the text. Either way it doesn't matter but it does interrupt the flow. Many of the things you will hear you probably have heard before but overall it is very interesting. I especially loved his connection to art, both very old and newer, to enrich descriptions. I am glad I tried it and will listen to another Great Course series again soon.
24 hours of lecture blew by as Professor Garland, with his lovely English accent and consistent enthusiasm, takes us through the daily lives of the ancients. There is nothing stuffy or stilted about the content for the thousands of years of travel we do (actually millions). He describes every day objects, clothing, hairstyles, family life and then places them into a larger sociopolitical context. He does this equally well across Egyptian, Greek, and Roman cultures. I didn't think I'd have the attention span to finish, but I might just listen to it all again because it was so rich with interesting information. It's a great partner on long runs, commuting, or doing household tasks.
My "a-hah" moment was his discussion of how the Dark Ages came about. If you are at that point in your life where you want to make sense of the long view of time, you will love this book. It dovetails nicely with Zealot by Rasa Aslan- lots of overlapping information about early Jewish and Roman culture. Thanks for a wonderful course, Dr. Garland.
I was excited to find this book, but I was eventually disappointed in that selection. Don't get me wrong. I thought it was a good series. It just wasn't what I surmised from the title. I have taught introductory courses about the ancient world. I know about ancient cultural practice: religion, class, labor, concepts of the world, gender roles, etc. What I was hoping for was a clear picture of daily life. Where did these people sleep? What did they do when they got up in the morning? What did they do during the day? At night? How exactly, really, specifically, did the daily life of a king differ from that of a laborer, for example? I wanted to be able to see individual people living their lives.
His voice was pleasant, easy to listen to.
Say something about yourself!
A different reader. I have two issues with Robert Garland's presentation. First, he has a fairly noticeable lisp. I don't think this would bother me if it didn't somehow compound his far bigger shortcoming. He reads one. word. at. a. time. With great emphasis on each word in a way that if I was just learning the language I would love. He doesn't do it in the part that you can hear in the sample and on other occasions he is clearly speaking off the cuff and sounds perfectly fine. The other 90% are very difficult to listen to. If the subject were just slightly less interesting, I could easily delete the whole thing.
Not even a little.
These were well constructed lectures that presented an interesting selection of topics on ancient life, primarily in western Europe. Don't expect to find out anything about life in Central Asia or the Indus Valley or Peru. However, you will get a lot of good information about Egypt, Greece, Rome, and Britain in particular. I have some background in all of these cultures, so I was particularly interested in the lectures on topics that I hadn't read about, such as life for refugees in Greece or life for people with disabilities.
As mentioned above, the chapters on refugees and life as a disabled person were topics that I'd never encountered before in any of my readings about the ancient world.
He has a very lively speaking voice, and his occasional personal anecdotes add to the lectures. There are not so many such anecdotes that the content of the talks is diluted, though.
Dr. Garland's description of life in a Roman garret was exceptionally vivid. It sounded quite sad and dismal.
The overall construction of the lecture series is very well thought-out, including references back from one lecture to previous lectures in which similar topics had been mentioned in different cultures and a summary lecture that skillfully reiterated the major topics.
How excited Professor Robert Garland was to share all the fascinating information about what it meant to live as an ordinary person in a time when most of what we know has to do with the extraordinary names of history.
That it offered information and perspective into what the style of life throughout the history of humanity would have meant for someone like myself.
His enthusiasm. It's always more interesting to listen to someone who cares about what they're talking about.
Any moment that spoke of the depraved things humans did in a time where there was no condemnation to such acts. There were moments where it was very difficult to hear, for the truth of the words was overwhelming to consider.
Even though it is a history lesson, with hints of Social Anthropology, it is great for those of us who are nerds and love this type of book.
For anyone this makes ancient history more palatable and a great deal more enjoyable.
Egyptian life was very interesting.
Definitely not. This is not that type of book but I certainly wanted to finish the epochs.
Garland does a good job in the professed 'otherside' but much comes from well known histories of the well to do. Much of the 'stuff' is anecdotical, a big problem is Garland tends to merge generations. For example he'll mention A and B but A and B did not occur at the same time, but rather a 100 years apart. He does have a hard job of covering a million years in the allotted time.I'm an armature expect in ancient Greeks and Romans. Garland did not add additional information that I did not already know. He actually muddied the water as many events were as I said 100 years apart. Again he deals with social impacts but not a linear history.He missed the Byzantine empire totally. But knowing the Byzantine empire well it was interesting to hear what backwater Brittany was doing. He also missed the Francs in their glory. He was good at adding a discussion of religion.In all, I'd recommend the lecture as a intro to social structure in history, which is his main goal. It ( the lectures) are not to be used as a history lecture in any sense. Worth a listen on a long drive, but finding out how the poor man lived is the same as the poor man lives today is not much fun.