Monday, August 27, 2012

Nardo, Don. Classical Civilization: Greece.

Nardo, Don.  Classical Civilization: Greece.    Morgan Reynolds   112  $28.95 978-1-59935-173-5   ms/hs     Series: World History     VG-BNS

This book provides an overview of ancient Greece and its continuing influence on contemporary society.        Modern-day Greece is a small country with modest input into contemporary world affairs.  However, the ancient Greeks set in motion ideas and practices that greatly influenced Western civilization as a whole. 

Readers will find the concise, straightforward prose easy to understand as they learn about Greek warfare, tactics, and heroes.  Nardo clearly describes how the ancient Greeks created the foundations of modern political, artistic, and social culture.  The Greeks’ contribution to the development of scientific disciplines such as biology, botany, and astronomy are also discussed, as well as Greek architecture.  The chapter on the Olympics dispels the myth that the original games were limited to amateur athletes who received no financial gain through participation. 

Photographs and illustrations are judiciously included, highlighting related text.  The sidebars contain useful facts and offer more insight into the topics under discussion.

A useful timeline, extensive source list and bibliography are included, plus a list of related websites that will be helpful to student researchers.  There is also a glossary and index.

Nardo’s text provides a solid overview of the many ways the Greeks helped to shape western civilization, and continue to influence contemporary life.                                                  --Hilary Welliver

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