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Publisher's Summary

The devastating US atomic bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki not only brought World War II to an end, but effectively gave birth to the Cold War. The postwar world would thereafter be marked by the fragile relationship of two superpowers with opposing ideologies: the United States and the Soviet Union.

For 45 years, these two superpowers would vie for supremacy in world politics. The Cold War, defined by events such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, turmoil in the Third World, and the arms race, held the potential for an apocalyptic confrontation that could have spelled doom for the human race. Understanding the Cold War, with all of its far-reaching, global implications, is absolutely essential to our understanding of the history of the second half of the 20th century and beyond.

©2005 David S. Painter; (P)2005 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
  • Stephen
  • charlotte, NC, United States
  • 03-05-09

Decent history until the 80's

The professor is clearly anti-Reagan. His claim that the military build-up in the 80's prolonged the Cold War rings hollow. He seems to believe Gorbachev won the Cold War. Odd.

9 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Katie
  • PrevezaGreece
  • 02-06-09

Not a scholarly book

I was extremely disappointed with this book. I thought it would be a historic book about the cold war but it was rather an American perspective on it. The professor discusses in detail throughout the book about how America struggled to gain power and what were the circumstances in America at the time. He also talked extensively about America's superiority to the Russians and gave a lot of excuses about the crimes committed by America to maintain it's status and prestige at the time. Knowing all too well what happened in some of those cases this book seemed to be more of a propaganda book than anything else.
I would have rather listened to a more neutral perspective about all the countries involved and their struggle as well. Sorry but I don't think this book is worth the money at all.

9 of 13 people found this review helpful

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  • Ed
  • 01-21-15

Concise, informative and thought provoking

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This is an excellent summary of a key period of modern history which presents in clear and concise terms the tensions between the USA and the USSR as well as the complex dynamics of the modern world that hung from this central global tension

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Modern Scholar: Cold War: On the Brink of Apocalypse?

Professor Painter's inferences are logically drawn and persuasively presented. The course runs smoothly through history and the weight given to individual episodes and incidents seemed appropriate

Which character – as performed by the narrator – was your favourite?

The characters are presidents and Soviet general secretaries. For a person of my age I have some recollection of most of them but their slants and biases were clearly revealed

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Try not to be an a**hole when you have a technological advantage over the other guy

1 of 1 people found this review helpful