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The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History Lecture

The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History

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Publisher's Summary

History is made and defined by landmark events - moments that irrevocably changed the course of human civilization. They have given us

  • spiritual and political ideas;
  • catastrophic battles and wars;
  • scientific and technological advances;
  • world leaders both influential and monstrous; and
  • cultural works of unparalleled beauty.

Now a series of 36 captivating lectures explores some of the most important and definitive events in the history of the world - events after which our world would never be the same.

Taught by a remarkably gifted teacher with more than 25 teaching awards to his credit, these lectures form an intriguing and engaging tour of thousands of years of human history, from the creation of the Code of Hammurabi to the Battle of Lexington to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech and beyond. It's a chance for you to gain new insights about world history from a truly riveting historian.

Using his expert knowledge and impressive ability to draw out invaluable lessons from the past, Professor Fears has chosen the events he discusses based on three criteria: how the event in itself fundamentally changed history, how the aftermath of the event changed history, and how the event and its impact still resonate with us today.

The result is a comprehensive and authoritative selection of subjects, each of which played a crucial role in transforming human civilization. Whether the event is an obvious or not-so-obvious choice, Professor Fears takes great care to tie each to the 21st century, pointing out just how influential these and other moments were in shaping who we are and how we live.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2010 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2010 The Great Courses

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (293 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mudir Soroor Planet Earth 11-05-16
    Mudir Soroor Planet Earth 11-05-16 Member Since 2013

    Mudir

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    "A Western Perspective and Biased"

    Most of the events presented dealt with the western hemisphere and/or were relevant mostly to the western interests!

    Although he tried to give Islam and its civilization some attention, he was unable to be fair enough and give it the proportion of attention it deserves!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gleb 10-28-16
    Gleb 10-28-16 Member Since 2014
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    Story
    "It could be acceptable for a grade 5 class room"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I think some kids loving fairy tales could enjoy it. For sure it should be targeted to kids and listed as a "funny stories" rather than a lecture.


    What could The Great Courses have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Maybe provide a target audience in the book description. Author is good story teller but not a historian. And please how one can say anything like "American language is the main language in the world" (something close to it). It is English language.


    What about Professor J. Rufus Fears’s performance did you like?

    He was entertaining and enthusiastic enough and some people could like it.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History?

    Almost everything since it is not history.


    Any additional comments?

    I do not recommend it as a historian book. If you want to listen some "funny stories" based on historical events mixed with words how great are United States it is for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ONTTO 10-18-16
    ONTTO 10-18-16
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    "Mistitled Book"

    This book should have been titled: "America was never the same: Events that changed American History " This book which proports to be about world history takes an American slant on all events. It's not what I expected from the title of the book. This is the worst Great Courses book that I have read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    earl r. cook 06-24-16
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    "The world was never the same:Events that changed history."

    Professor J. Rufus Fears was one of the best lecturers I have ever heard. He is remarkably candid and always gets the point across. He makes studies very easy to comprehend with a sense of humor. A fantastic professor!!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jayme Hayes 06-08-16
    Jayme Hayes 06-08-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Disappointing; very religion-centric"

    I found this book very disappointing. There was little history, and that was well salted by myths, fables, and speculation presented as fact. Large sections of the first three hours were simply credulous readings out of the bible, or Torah, recounted as if they were uncontested histories. If I had known this was a "history of the world as told by important events in religious books" I would never have purchased it. First great course I have not finished. I honestly wanted my money back.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dianne Cape May, NJ, United States 04-09-16
    Dianne Cape May, NJ, United States 04-09-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Captivating history"

    I would have loved to have a professor like Professor Fears when I was in college. If I had, I might have decided to change my major to history. He brings to life with great reality, color, and sometimes humor, 36 events and people who impacted world history forever. I have listened with enjoyment and new insight to his lectures several times, and they will be a permanent audible on my iPod.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Texas USA 03-29-16
    Amazon Customer Texas USA 03-29-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Serious errors of fact"

    Robert E. Lee did own slaves and property in Virginia. Arlington plantation, in fact. Christopher Columbus did not discover a new world. There were people here before him, including some Europeans. Also, if I choose a history title, I do not want to be preached to about any religion. Not recommended.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Upper Montclair, New Jersey, USA 01-14-16
    Amazon Customer Upper Montclair, New Jersey, USA 01-14-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Untrustworthy"
    What disappointed you about The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History?

    As a cheerleader for the Great Courses, it pains me to say: Stay Away!

    Announcing that there is nothing implausible about the stories of Abraham and Joseph, and a pointed refusal to question even the literal parting of the Red Sea, should be a huge red flag. Professor Fears goes on to tell us that Sparta was a democracy, that Caessar didn't want power for ambition's sake but only to serve Rome better, and that Robert E. Lee owned no slaves. Neglecting to add that this last is true only by the hairsplitting legality of the slaves belonging to Mary Custis amounts to deliberate deception.

    Alongside such whoppers, Fears offers a lot of half-truth, mixing imaginary scenario with fact or conspicuously ignoring pivotal elements. One typical example: in seeking causes for the Wall Street crashes of 1929 and 2008, he delivers a lengthy and fictive tale of a consumer buying irresponsibly on credit. Banking deregulation gets mentioned only once, in passing, without elaboration. Monetary policy, regulatory capture, and corporate malfeasance aren't even mentioned, much less fairly examined. Nope, the market collapse was caused by small consumers buying too much, end of story.

    Sermonizing asides push a mix of American exceptionalism, biblical literalism, and Horatio Alger bromides. This is not history; it is ideology culling history (and historical myth, when necessary) for validation.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Claire R. 01-11-16
    Claire R. 01-11-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Great premise, poor execution"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    People comfortable with taking the Bible at face-value.


    If you’ve listened to books by The Great Courses before, how does this one compare?

    I love The Great Courses, but this one was a disappointment.


    What aspect of Professor J. Rufus Fears’s performance would you have changed?

    A little less theatrical gravitas wouldn't have hurt.


    Any additional comments?

    Prof. Fears takes the census at the time of Jesus's birth for granted, without even mentioning that many other historians find it highly problematic or impossible. If he's not addressing historical controversies in his lectures, then it makes me question his biases and the validity of his other narratives.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Weber Westfield, IN USA 02-10-14
    J. Weber Westfield, IN USA 02-10-14 Member Since 2011

    Indy Tar Heel

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    "Excellent and insightful"
    What made the experience of listening to The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History the most enjoyable?

    The professor was engaging, dynamic and made interesting points. He described the downline implications well and plausibly as well as situating the occurrences among the contemporary history.


    What other book might you compare The World Was Never the Same: Events That Changed History to and why?

    What if? just because it describes pivotal moments in history that had far reaching impact.


    Have you listened to any of Professor J. Rufus Fears’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, but I would listen to him in a heartbeat.


    2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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