Rather than a time of darkness, the Middle Ages saw extraordinary innovation, invention, and cultural vitality. It was the Middle Ages that gave us universities, vernacular literature, and the extraordinary beauty of Gothic architecture.
To study the medieval world, then, is not only to study a time that has passed away. It is to study the birth of a new culture that would mature into the modern West. Whether we know it or not, the world we live in today is itself the product of the Middle Ages - not "Dark," but remarkably bright.
©2009 Thomas Madden; (P)2009 Recorded Books
I am a keen journeyman in history and I have gained some very important information from this lecture. Although I think too much importance have been given to black death and not enough to the Byzantine Empire but that's a personal opinion. If you have the pt 1, this companion course makes it complete.
The scholar stammers, searches for words, and doesn't use voice inflection to the benefit of the reader; nevertheless, the content is spot on. If one is interested in a low brow introduction to life in the middle ages, I'd recommend Ken Follett's "Pillars of the Earth" as these Medieval principles are acted out in a compelling narrative, albeit with gratuitous adult content.
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