A History Of World Societies: The Book

A History of World Societies: The Book is a college-level survey text that has been used by over a million students.

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A History Of World Societies: The Book – Introduction

Welcome to the first edition of A History of World Societies! This book has been crafted as a comprehensive overview of human societies from ancient times to the present day, and we are confident that it will become a valuable resource for anyone with an interest in history.

This edition features contributions from leading historians from around the globe, each expert in their respective field. Our hope is that this book will provide readers with a greater understanding of the complex tapestry that is world history.

We have organized this book into fourteen chapters, each covering a different period in history. In addition, we have included a glossary of terms and a bibliography for further reading.

We would like to thank all of the authors who have contributed to this book, as well as our editorial staff, who worked tirelessly to bring this project to fruition. We hope you enjoy reading A History of World Societies!

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Chapter 1 – The Origins Of World Societies

In the first chapter of A History of World Societies, The Origins of World Societies, author John P. McKay sets out to explore the various theories about the origins of human society. He begins by examining the work of early anthropologists and archaeologists who posited that human beings began living in small groups of hunter-gatherers. These early humans, they argued, gradually developed more complex social structures as they learned to domesticate plants and animals and began to live in larger settlements.

McKay then looks at more recent theories about the origins of human societies, including those that emphasize the role of environmental factors in shaping social development. He also discusses the rise of agriculture and the emergence of cities as key turning points in human history. The chapter concludes with a brief overview of some of the major civilizations that arose in different parts of the world during the prehistoric and early historic periods.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Chapter 2 – The Development Of World Societies

In this chapter, we will trace the development of world societies from early prehistoric times to 1500. To do this, we will look at the ways in which different parts of the world were interconnected before 1500, and how those interconnections spurred – or in some cases, hindered – social development. We will also examine the changing role of technology in human societies, and see how economic and environmental factors have influenced social change.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Chapter 3 – The Expansion Of World Societies

Chapter 3 of A History Of World Societies covers the expansion of world societies, focusing on how different societies became more interconnected and how this led to increased international trade and conflict. The chapter looks at the rise of new empires, such as the Mongols and the Ottomans, and how they impacted the world economy. It also discusses the impact of the Crusades, which were a series of religious wars fought between Christians and Muslims. Finally, the chapter looks at how the rise of new technologies, such as gunpowder and printing, helped to accelerate the process of globalization.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Chapter 4 – The Consolidation Of World Societies

From 600-1450, Western and Central Asiansmerce resulted in the rise of great merchant empires: Islamic, Indian, and Chinese. These empires facilitated the spread of technology, ideas, and pathogens. In this chapter, we will explore how increased interregional interaction characterized by long-distance trade routes facilitated these exchanges.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Chapter 5 – The Modern World

This chapter covers the period from 1800 to 1914, when the world experienced an Industrial Revolution and a series of dramatic social changes. It discusses the rise of nationalism, democracy, and socialism; the spread of imperialism; and the enduring problems of poverty and inequality. The chapter also looks at the cultural achievements of the era, including the rise of Romanticism in art and literature.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Conclusion

Since its inception, A History of World Societies has been widely adopted by instructors and students alike because of its comprehensive scope, engaging narrative, and pedagogical features. The Tenth Edition maintains these proven strengths while revising and updating the content to reflect recent historiography and changes in the world.

The text is organized into twenty-nine chapters, arranged chronologically and covering key societies from the ancient world through the present day. Each chapter describes the major political, economic, social, religious, intellectual, cultural, and artistic developments within a given society. The author team’s distinguishing feature is their focus on commonalities among cultures –– what human beings have shared throughout history –– rather than on differences.

The Tenth Edition features a new primary source program and more than 400 new or revised illustrations and maps. In addition, each chapter opens with a new field-defining essay by a leading historian in the field of World History. These essays provide an overview of recent scholarship relevant to that chapter’s theme.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Bibliography


1. Adas, M., 1989. Machines as the Measure of Men: Science, Technology and Ideologies of Western Dominance. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
2. Arrighi, G., 1994. The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origins of Our Times. London: Verso.
3. Bairoch, P., 1993. Economics and World History: Myths and Paradoxes. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
4. Baran, P., 1957. The Political Economy of Growth. New York: Monthly Review Press.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – Index

This is the index for the book A History Of World Societies.

A History Of World Societies: The Book – About The Author

Jackson J. Spielvogel is Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus at Pennsylvania State University. He received his bachelor’s degree from Duke University and his Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has taught at the University of Oklahoma, Haverford College, and the Pennsylvania State University, where he was Chair of the Department of History from 1984 to 1988. He has been a Fulbright Lecturer at the Free University of Berlin and a Guggenheim Fellow. He is a Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science and a member of the Comitato Scientifico of the Istituto Internazionale per la Storia delle Religioni in Rome.

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