Read The Last Days of Europe: Epitaph for an Old Continent by Walter Laqueur Free Online
Book Title: The Last Days of Europe: Epitaph for an Old Continent|
ISBN 13: 9780312368708
The author of the book: Walter Laqueur
Edition: Thomas Dunne Books
Date of issue: May 15th 2007
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 794 KB
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Reader ratings: 3.2
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I have mixed feelings about this book, which proposes that Europe is in an irretrievable downward spiral, based on demographics and an inability to get its act together. On the one hand, it is well written, and flows easily. It is much more scholarly than another book I have read that puts forth a similar thesis (America Alone). What I found lacking, though, was an in depth analysis on what could be done, or what could have or should have been done to prevent what the author sees as an inevitable negative outcome. The book tries to steer clear of being all about the demise of the Western world and the rise of Islam (unlike America Alone), and does a relatively good job in this regard. The subjects discussed are delicate ones -- failed immigration policies, social welfare programs that resulted in large unmotivated groups that failed to integrate into society, and education issues. It is difficult to take a position on any of these issues without being labelled as either a bleeding heart liberal or a cold-hearted conservative. It would be interesting to read a book that presents both views and tries to reconcile them.
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Read information about the authorLaqueur was born in Breslau, Lower Silesia, Prussia (modern Wrocław, Poland), into a Jewish family. In 1938, he left Germany for the British Mandate of Palestine. His parents, who were unable to leave, became victims of the Holocaust.
Laqueur lived in Israel from 1938 to 1953. After one year at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, he joined a Kibbutz and worked as an agricultural laborer from 1939 to 1944. In 1944, he moved to Jerusalem, where he worked as a journalist until 1953, covering Palestine and other countries in the Middle East.
Since 1955 Laqueur has lived in London. He was founder and editor, with George Mosse, of the Journal of Contemporary History and of Survey from 1956 to 1964. He was also founding editor of The Washington Papers. He was Director of the Institute of Contemporary History and the Wiener Library in London from 1965 to 1994. From 1969 he was a member, and later Chairman (until 2000), of the International Research Council of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington. He was Professor of the History of Ideas at Brandeis University from 1968 to 1972, and University Professor at Georgetown University from 1976 to 1988. He has also been a visiting professor of history and government at Harvard, the University of Chicago, Tel Aviv University and Johns Hopkins University.
Laqueur's main works deal with European history in the 19th and 20th centuries, especially Russian history and German history, as well as the history of the Middle East. The topics he has written about include the German Youth Movement, Zionism, Israeli history, the cultural history of the Weimar Republic and Russia, Communism, the Holocaust, fascism, and the diplomatic history of the Cold War. His books have been translated into many languages, and he was one of the founders of the study of political violence, guerrilla warfare and terrorism. His comments on international affairs have appeared in many American and European newspapers and periodicals.
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