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PDF | On Oct 1, , Tison Pugh and others published BOOK REVIEW FORUM The Swerve: How the World Became Modern. By Stephen. Stephen Greenblatt (). The Swerve: How the World Became. Modern (New York and London: W.W. Norton & Company), pp. , ISBN download: Free *PDF* The Swerve: How the World Became Modern TXT,PDF,EPUB.

And good stories are very useful. Paperback Verified download. This beautiful and informative book by Stephen Greenblatt can be read as three separated but connected books. First, a thorough biography of the Italian politician and humanist Poggio Braccilioni, who rose from a humble origin to become a papal secretary a powerbroker in the corrupt XV century Vatican court , and, who, at the same time, driven by a passion for ancient books, uncovered, transcript and recovered the manuscript of On the Nature of Things, a timeless masterpiece written by the Latin poet Lucretius two millennials ago.

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Second, a historical study showing how the ideas of Epicurus and other pagan thinkers about the natural word and the centrality of pleasure were replaced and superseded by Christian doctrines about the divine providence and the centrality of suffering. Christians thought otherwise, insisted in other worlds and we all know well brought about much misery. Early Christians portrayed Epicurus as a callous and dangerous hedonist. Sadly, for humanity, Christians sided with suffering. They promoted chastity, self-flagellation, and pleasure avoidance.

On the Nature of Things was cited by Montaigne, mentioned by Shakespeare, and read by Thomas Jefferson, among many other thinkers of the enlightenment. The process involves many false starts and dead ends, monsters, prodigies, mistakes, creatures that were not endowed with all the features that they needed to compete for resources and to create offspring. I have only one complain about this book. Greenblatt overplayed the role of Lucretius in helping to unsettle and transform the world.

(PDF Download) The Swerve: How the World Became Modern Download

The poem is indeed unsettling. No doubt the idea of human insignificance disturbed the monopoly of the tellers of fables who dominated the Middle ages.

Poggio even rejected the main message of On the Nature of Things. Be what it may, we must celebrate the amazing affinity between Lucretius and the main minds of the modern world.

site Edition Verified download. This well-written, well-documented book makes for a fascinating read assuming one has interest in the topic. I happen to have an interest in the process through which Greek and Roman texts were recovered by and made available to the west and so found myself quickly drawn into Greenblatt's wonderfully told detective story.

Although I found his synopses of Lucretius's doctrines accurate--one finds them in chapter one has to go to the poem itself--published in a wonderful prose translation by Martin Ferguson Smith but also available in several fine verse translations--to get to the details of the Epicurean view. Greenblatt's book is altogether accessible and will deepen and broaden one's knowledge of the topics it addresses. I was frankly shocked that I found The Swerve so enjoyable!

I expected to learn, and I learned a lot. I expected to be left with ideas to think about and form opinions around. Plenty of that here, too. But Greenblatt also writes in a delightful style that verges on poetic at times.

At points, there was a lot of background to be displayed before the next set of facts could be understood. Then, the author switches gears to that novel-by-a-poet style to keep my attention. I won't get into the ideas beyond what he calls "how the world became modern," but I will say that a lot more history and even philosophy is on display.

Excellent book. Tells the story of the 15th century discovery of a manuscript of a previously unknown classic text, De Rerum Natura On the Nature of Things by Lucretius, written in the first century BC. The manuscript was discovered by an Italian, Poggio Bracciolini, who was the chief secretary for several Popes. Much of the book is devoted to Poggio's life. Greenblatt also gives lots of interesting information on early Renaissance Italy when the humanist movement, the recovery of ancient texts, became popular among the intellectual elite.

There's also quite a bit of discussion of De Rerum Natura, which was based on the philosophies of Epicurus and Democritus. Greenblatt is a quite enthusiastic adherent to Lucretius's philosophy, but his explanation is just an uncritical summary.

Greenblatt is always an entertaining writer, and he has done a lot of research for this book; so all readers will learn a lot. Unfortunately, it doesn't deliver on its promise of explaining "How the world became modern.

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The Swerve - How the World Became Modern - By Stephen Greenblatt - Book Review - NYTimes

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No notes for slide. Book details Author: Stephen Greenblatt Pages: English ISBN Description this book Please continue to the next page 4.

If you want to download this book, click link in the last page 5. It turned out to be the only surviving copy of Lucretius's poem, "On the Nature of Things" — a rich, dangerous, mind-blowing poem written around 50 B. Pretty huge claims, but Greenblatt is both scholar and storyteller enough to support them.

Greenblatt says that some of the world shakers who would be directly influenced by Lucretius' ideas are Galileo, Einstein and our very own American apostle of the "pursuit of happiness," Thomas Jefferson. Surely, sales of Lucretius' "On the Nature of Things" will spike as a result of Greenblatt's book: his awe-struck discussions of the poem make it sound so weird and beautiful that most readers will want to give Lucretius a whirl themselves.

And what a service Greenblatt has performed in bringing to light Poggio Bracciolini, a great explorer who discovered, not lost continents, but lost books. The Swerve is one of those brilliant works of non-fiction that's so jam-packed with ideas and stories it literally boggles the mind.SlideShare Explore Search You. It could have finished Lucretius off but we are lucky.

Show related SlideShares at end. Greenblatt is always an entertaining writer, and he has done a lot of research for this book; so all readers will learn a lot. Views Total views. Such encounters have become central to the philosophy Greenblatt has elaborated in several decades of work as a literary historian and theorist of the new historicism in literary studies.

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