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Our Oriental Heritage

29 ratings

Summary

The first volume of Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize-winning series, Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization, Volume I chronicles the early history of Egypt, the Middle East, and Asia. In this masterful work, readers will encounter: Sumeria, birthplace of the first cities and written laws the Egyptians, who perfected monumental architecture, medicine, and mummification more than 3,500 years ago the Babylonians, who developed astronomy and physics, and planted the seeds of Western mythology the Judeans, who preserved their culture forever in the immortal books of the Old Testament the Persians, who ruled the largest empire in recorded history before Rome Indian philosophy, Chinese philosophers, and Japanese Samurais

©2013 Will Durant (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Robin Field
Author: Will Durant
Category: History, World
Length: 50 hrs and 17 mins
Available on Audible
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The Story of Philosophy

26 ratings

Summary

The product of 11 years of research, The Story of Philosophy is an endlessly inspiring and instructive chronicle of the world’s greatest thinkers, from Socrates to Santayana. Written with exacting and scrupulous scholarship, it was designed both to command the respect of educators and to capture the interest of the layman. Durant lucidly describes the philosophical systems of such world-famous “monarchs of the mind” as Plato, Aristotle, Francis Bacon, Spinoza, Kant, Voltaire, and Nietzsche. Along with their ideas, he offers their flesh-and-blood biographies, placing their thoughts within their own time and place and elucidating their influence on our modern intellectual heritage. This book is packed with wisdom and wit. Will Durant (1885-1981) was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He spent over 50 years writing his critically acclaimed 11-volume series The Story of Civilization. A champion of human-rights issues such as social reform and the brotherhood of man long before they were popular, he continues to educate and entertain readers and listeners worldwide through his writings.

©1926 Will Durant (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Author: Will Durant
Length: 19 hrs and 27 mins
Available on Audible
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The Renaissance

18 ratings

Summary

An engrossing volume on the Italian Renaissance by Pulitzer Prize - winning historian Will Durant The fifth volume of Durant's acclaimed Story of Civilization,The Renaissance chronicles the history of Italy from1304 to 1576. In this masterful work, listeners will encounter the poets Petrarch and Boccaccio, the fathers ofthe Renaissance; the paintings, sculptures, and architecture ofMilan, Florence, and Venice; the life and accomplishments of Leonardo DaVinci; the Catholic church and the popes of Avignon and Rome; the politicians and philosophers of Italy,including the Borgia family, Julius II, and Machiavelli; the Italian Wars, the conflicts with France, and the country's decline.

©2014 Will Durant (P)2014 Blackstone Audio, Inc

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Author: Will Durant
Category: History, Europe
Length: 37 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
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The Life of Greece

18 ratings

Summary

The second volume of Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize - winning series The Story of Civilization. Volume 2 chronicles the history of ancient Greek civilization. Here Durant tells the whole story of Greece from the days of Crete's vast Aegean empire to the final extirpation of the last remnants of Greek liberty, crushed under the heel of an implacably forward-marching Rome. The dry minutiae of battles and sieges, of tortuous statecraft of tyrant and king, get minor emphasis in what is preeminently a vivid recreation of Greek culture, brought to the listener through the medium of supple, vigorous prose. In this masterful work, listeners will learn about: The siege of Troy The great city-states of Athens and Sparta The heroes of Homer's epics The gods and lesser deities of Mount Olympus The teachings of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle The empire of Alexander the Great

©1966 Will Durant (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Author: Will Durant
Length: 32 hrs and 36 mins
Available on Audible
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Caesar and Christ

17 ratings

Summary

The third volume of Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize-winning series, Caesar and Christ chronicles the history of Roman civilization and of Christianity from their beginnings to A.D. 325. In this masterful work, listeners will learn about: The Etruscan civilization of ancient Italy The birth of the Roman Republic and the beginnings of Roman law The great reigns of Caesar and Antony The people of Rome - the artisans, tradesmen, and scientists The places of Rome's great empire The beginnings of Christianity and its growth The rise of Constantine and the fall of the empire

©2011 Will Durant (P)2014 Blackstone Audio

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Author: Will Durant
Length: 36 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
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The Age of Faith, Volume 4

16 ratings

Summary

A History of Medieval Civilization (Christian, Islamic, and Judaic) from Constantine to Dante, AD 325 - 1300 The fourth volume in Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize-winning series, The Age of Faith surveys the medieval achievements and modern significance of Christian, Islamic, and Judaic life and culture. Like the other volumes in the Story of Civilization series, this is a self-contained work, which at the same time fits into a comprehensive history of mankind. It includes the dramatic stories of St. Augustine, Hypatia, Justinian, Mohammed, Harun al-Rashid, Charlemagne, William the Conqueror, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Richard the Lionheart, Saladin, Maimonides, St. Francis, St. Thomas Aquinas, Roger Bacon, and many others, all in the perspective of integrated history. The greatest love stories in literature - of Héloise and Abélard, of Dante and Beatrice - are here retold with enthralling scholarship.

©2011 Will Durant (P)2014 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Author: Will Durant
Length: 61 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
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The Age of Napoleon

14 ratings

Summary

An engrossing volume on European civilization by Pulitzer Prize-winning historians Will and Ariel Durant. The Age of Napoleon, the 11th and final volume of the Story of Civilization, surveys the amazing chain of events that wrenched Europe out of the Enlightenment and into the age of democracy. In this masterful work, listeners will encounter the French Revolution from the storming of the Bastille to the guillotining of the king; the revolution's leaders - Danton, Desmoulins, Robespierre, and Saint-Just - all cut down by the reign of terror they inaugurated; Napoleon's meteoric rise from provincial Corsican military student to emperor and commander of the largest army in history; Napoleon's fall - his army's destruction in the snows of Russia, his exile to Elba, his escape and reconquest of the throne, and his ultimate defeat at Waterloo by the combined forces of Europe; and the birth of Romanticism and the dawning of a new age of active democracy and a rising middle class, laying the foundation for a new era.

©1975 Will and Ariel Durant (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Category: History, Europe
Length: 43 hrs and 59 mins
Available on Audible
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The Age of Louis XIV

10 ratings

Summary

The Age of Louis XIV is the biography of a period (1648 - 1715) that Spengler considered the apex of modern European civilization. "Some centuries hence," Frederick the Great correctly predicted to Voltaire, "they will translate the good authors of the age of Pericles and Augustus." Those authors are lovingly treated here: Pascal, Racine, and Boileau, Madame de Sévigné, Madame de la Fayette, and above all the philosopher-dramatist Molière, who so memorably exposed the vices and hypocrisies of the age. Central to the audiobook is the "Sun King" himself, Louis XIV. Louis XIV ruled France for over seventy years, longer than almost any European ruler in history. He is the subject of a character study that runs through seven chapters, revealing the flesh and blood beneath the purple and the crown. He is seen at his worst in his struggle with Jansenists and Huguenots, at his best in his patronage of literature and art, and at his most human in his love affairs with Henrietta Anne of Orléans, Louise de La Vallière, Madame de Montespan, and Madame de Maintenon. From France the narrative passes to the Netherlands, and after pausing to examine the domestic idylls of Vermeer, shows the Dutch opening their dikes to save their land from Louis XIV and sending William of Orange to become king of England and a leader of the European alliance against Louis' hegemony. In England, we contemplate the heyday of virtue under the Puritans and study the strange character of Cromwell. We see Milton's passionate career as part of the vain effort to prevent the Stuart Restoration. We find Charles II, the "Merry Monarch", with more manners than morals, attend boisterous Restoration plays; we skim the diaries of Evelyn and Pepys; and we follow Jonathan Swift from genius to insanity. Crossing the North Sea, we trace the tragic heroism of Charles XII of Sweden and the attempt of Peter the Great to lead Russia from barbarism to civilization.

©1963 Will and Ariel Durant (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Category: History, Europe
Length: 36 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
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The Reformation

9 ratings

Summary

An engrossing volume on the European Reformation by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Will Durant. The sixth volume of Durant's acclaimed Story of Civilization, The Reformationchronicles the history of European civilization from 1300 to 1564. In this masterful work, listeners will encounter the schism within the Roman Catholic Church and the formation of early Protestantism; the theology of Martin Luther and his societal impact; the rise of Humanism and the life of Desiderius Erasmus; the royal monarchies of England, France, Spain, and Italy; the imperial conquests of Christopher Columbus and the discovery of the Americas; the Bohemian revolution of Eastern Europe, the unification of Russia, and the rise of the Ottoman Empire; the teachings of John Calvin; and the Counter-Reformation of the sixteenth century.

©1957 Will Durant (P)2014 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Author: Will Durant
Length: 50 hrs and 8 mins
Available on Audible
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The Age of Voltaire

9 ratings

Summary

The Age of Voltaire, the ninth volume of The Story of Civilization, is an in-depth examination of France and England in the first half of the 18th century. In this masterful work, listeners will encounter: The English ideas that inspired the Enlightenment in France - skepticism, scientific experiment, constitutional government, "natural rights", and individual liberty The salons of Paris, where the wits and thinkers of all Europe gathered to exchange ideas The philosophers - intellectuals, playwrights, and poets who consulted and consorted with kings and queens Voltaire himself - the incarnation of the Enlightenment and a devotee of reason who still defended religious faith Mme. Pompadour, patron of the philosophers, who seduced King Louis XV and through him influenced French policy The Augustan Age in English literature - Alexander Pope's poetry, Jonathan Swift's satires, and the novels of Samuel Richardson and Henry Fielding

©2015 Will and Ariel Durant (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Category: History, Europe
Length: 42 hrs and 55 mins
Available on Audible
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The Age of Reason Begins

9 ratings

Summary

This seventh volume of Will and Ariel Durant's renowned Story of Civilization chronicles the history of European civilization from 1558 to 1648. The Age of Reason Begins brings together a fascinating network of stories in the discussion of the bumpy road toward the Enlightenment. This is the age of great monarchs and greater artists - on the one hand, Elizabeth I of England, Philip II of Spain, and Henry IV of France; on the other, Shakespeare, Cervantes, Montaigne, and Rembrandt. It also encompasses the heyday of Francis Bacon, Galileo, Giordano Bruno, and Descartes, the fathers of modern science and philosophy. But it is equally an age of extreme violence, a moment in which all Europe was embroiled in the horrible Thirty Years' War - in some respects, the real first world war. This chapter in cultural history is one that can't be missed.

©1961 Will and Ariel Durant (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Category: History, Europe
Length: 34 hrs and 51 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time

The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time

8 ratings

Summary

Best-selling historian and philosopher Will Durant devoted his entire life to studying the most significant eras, individuals, and achievements of human history. Here is a summation of Durant's work, as he presents the best of world history, from "The One Hundred Best Books for an Education" to "The Ten Greatest Thinkers," "The Ten Greatest Poets," "The Ten Peaks of Human Progress," and "Twelve Vital Dates in Human History." Filled with Durant's renowned wit, knowledge, and unique ability to explain events in simple and exciting terms, it is a concise liberal arts education.

©2003 John Little and the Estate of Will Durant; 2002 John Little, Monica Ariel Mihell, and William James Durant Easton (P)2003 The Audio Partners Publishing Corp.

Narrator: John Little
Author: Will Durant
Length: 3 hrs and 12 mins
Available on Audible
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Rousseau and Revolution

8 ratings

Summary

A History of Civilization in France, England, and Germany from 1756, and in the Remainder of Europe from 1715 to 1789 The Pulitzer Prize-winning volume on European civilization by acclaimed historians Will and Ariel Durant. Rousseau and Revolution, the 10th volume of the Story of Civilization, ranges over a Europe in ferment, but centers on the passionate rebel-philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the great exponent of the romantic impulse toward self-exploration and social revolt, who contended with the great rationalist Voltaire for the mind of Europe. Rousseau condemned civilization as a disease, glorified the noble savage, proclaimed to the world with equal intensity his own love affairs and the natural rights of man, and became the patron saint of the revolution and the worldwide social upheavals of two centuries.

©1967 Will and Ariel Durant (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki
Category: History, Europe
Length: 57 hrs and 21 mins
Available on Audible
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Heroes of History

3 ratings

Summary

At Will Durant's death at 96, in 1981, his personal papers were dispersed among relatives, collectors, and archive houses. Twenty years later, scholar John Little discovered the previously unknown manuscript of Heroes of History in Durant's granddaughter's garage. Written shortly before he died, these 21 essays serve as an abbreviated version of Durant's best-selling, 11-volume series, The Story of Civilization. Durant traces the lives and ideas of those who have helped to define civilization, from Confucius to Shakespeare, from the Roman Empire to the Reformation, spanning thousands of years of human history. A volume of life-enhancing wit and wisdom, Heroes of History draws upon Durant's expansive knowledge and singular ability to translate distant events and complex ideas into easily accessible principles.

©2001 John Little, Monica Ariel Mihell, and William James Durant Easton (P)2003 The Audio Partners Publishing Corp.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Author: Will Durant
Length: 12 hrs and 15 mins
Available on Audible
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Fallen Leaves

3 ratings

Summary

The final and most personal work from Pulitzer Prize - winning author and historian Will Durant - discovered 32 years after his death - is a message of insight for everyone who has sought meaning in life or the council of a wise friend in navigating life's journey. From 1968 to 1978, Will Durant made four public allusions to the existence of Fallen Leaves. One, in 1975, hinted at its contents: "a not very serious book that answers the questions of what I think about government, life, death, and God." And in 1975: "I propose... to answer all the important questions, simply, fairly, and imperfectly." Even into his 90s,he worked on the book daily, writing it out on legal notepads. Upon his death in 1981, no one, not even the Durant heirs, knew if he had completed it, or even if it still existed. Thirty-two years later, in a granddaughter's attic trunk, the manuscript was discovered. Fallen Leaves is Will Durant's most personal book. It is precisely as he described: 22 short chapters on everything from youth and old age, religion and morals, to sex, war, politics, and art. The culmination of Durant's 60-plus years spent researching the philosophies, religions, arts, sciences, and civilizations from across the world, Fallen Leaves is the distilled wisdom of a gifted scholar with a renowned talent for rendering the insights of the past accessible. In its preface Durant mentions that over the course of his career, he received letters from "curious readers who have challenged me to speak my mind on the timelessquestions of human life and fate." With Fallen Leaves, he accepted their challenge. It contains strong opinions, elegant prose, and deep insights into the human condition as only Will Durant could provide, as well as his revealing conclusions about the perennial problems and greatest joys we face as a species.

©2014 John Little and the Estate of Will and Ariel Durant (P)2014 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Author: Will Durant
Length: 5 hrs and 18 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Girl Who Escaped From Auschwitz:

The Girl Who Escaped From Auschwitz:

Summary

“We must die standing up for something.” “And what are we standing up for?” “The most important thing there is. Freedom.” Millions of people walked through Auschwitz’s gates, but she was the first woman who escaped. This powerful novel tells the inspiring true story of Mala Zimetbaum, whose heroism will never be forgotten, and whose fate altered the course of history.... Nobody leaves Auschwitz alive.  Mala, inmate 19880, understood that the moment she stepped off the cattle train into the depths of hell. As an interpreter for the SS, she uses her position to save as many lives as she can, smuggling scraps of bread to those desperate with hunger.  Edward, inmate 531, is a camp veteran and a political prisoner. Though he looks like everyone else, with a shaved head and striped uniform, he’s a fighter in the underground Resistance. And he has an escape plan. They are locked up for no other sin than simply existing. But when they meet, the dark shadow of Auschwitz is lit by a glimmer of hope. Edward makes Mala believe in the impossible. That despite being surrounded by electric wire, machine guns topping endless watchtowers and searchlights roaming the ground, they will leave this death camp.  A promise is made - they will escape together or they will die together. What follows is one of the greatest love stories in history.... Fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Choice, and The Orphan Train will love this breathtakingly beautiful tale, of courage in the face of tragedy and bravery in the face of fear. Based on a true story, The Girl Who Escaped Auschwitz shows that in darkness, love can be your light....

©2021 Ellie Midwood (P)2021 Bookouture, an imprint of Storyfire Ltd.

Length: 12 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible