The Fall of Rome: And the End of Civilization

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Attacking contemporary theories with relish and making use of modern archaeological evidence, he looks at both the wider explanations for the disintegration of the Roman world and also the consequences for the lives of everyday Romans, who were caught in a world of marauding barbarians, and economic collapse. The book recaptures the drama and violence of the last days of the Roman world, and reminds us of the very real terrors of barbarian occupation. Equally important, Ward-Perkins contends that a key problem with the new way of looking at the end of the ancient world is that all difficulty and awkwardness is smoothed out into a steady and positive transformation of society.

Reporter's Notebook

Nothing ever goes badly wrong in this vision of the past. The evidence shows otherwise.

Up-to-date and brilliantly written, combining a lively narrative with the latest research and thirty illustrations, this superb volume reclaims the drama, the violence, and the tragedy of the fall of Rome. Explains the complex realities of the Roman empire and its neighbors in fascinating detail. Request examination copy.


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Gargola, Noel Lenski Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford. Equally important, Ward-Perkins contends that a key problem with the new way of looking at the end of the ancient world is that all difficulty and awkwardness is smoothed out into a steady and positive transformation of society.

The Fall of Rome Explained In 13 Minutes

Nothing ever goes badly wrong in this vision of the past. The evidence shows otherwise.

The Fall Of Rome, and the end of Civilization by Ward-Perkins, Bryan -

Up to date and brilliantly written, combining a lively narrative with the latest research and thirty illustrations, this superb volume reclaims the drama, the violence, and the tragedy of the fall of Rome. His research concentrates on the period of transition from the Roman world to that of the Middle Ages circa A. He has published widely on the subject and is a co-editor of The Cambridge Ancient History.

However, in the Eastern Roman empire, sheltered from the barbarian invaders by the Hellespont, civilisation and a high standard of comfort lasted until the Arab invasions in the 8th century. Many of the arguments for the gradual transition in the world of Late Antiquity come by using arguments from the Eastern empire and applying them to the West.

Brad Harris

How does he explain the collapse of comfort? The author, while agreeing about the attacks of the barbarians, rather tends to ignore Christianity. Neither does he accept my own belief that we need to think in terms of the collapse of a market economy. Where does one place the politics of such a book? Many of the arguments would I think find favour on the right, though some would also go down well with Marxists.


  • Review: Fall of Rome and the End of Civilization- Bryan Ward-Perkins | Would-be-historian.
  • Sonatina in C Major, Op. 36, No. 1.
  • Hoshi No Nemuru Bashyo (Japanese Edition).
  • His opponents, the believers in the smooth transition of Late Antiquity are to be found, I suspect, in New Labour, and especially, as he points out, in America. He sets out his own views in his final paragraph.

    The end of the Roman West witnessed horrors and dislocation of a kind I sincerely hope never to have to live through. Romans before the fall were as certain as we are today that their world would continue for ever substantially unchanged. They were wrong.

    2. Economic troubles and overreliance on slave labor

    We would be wise not to repeat their complacency.