Stranger Than We Can Imagine

Stranger Than We Can Imagine

An Alternative History of the 20th Century

Book - 2015
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"The twentieth century should make sense. It's the period of history that we know the most about, an epic geo-political narrative that runs through World War One, the great depression, World War Two, the American century and the fall of the Berlin Wall. But somehow that story doesn't quite lead into the world we find ourselves in now, this bewildering twenty-first century, adrift in a network of constant surveillance, unsustainable competition, tsunamis of trivia and extraordinary opportunity. Time, then, for a new perspective. John Higgs steps off the main path and wanders through some of the more curious backwaters of the twentieth century, exploring familiar and unfamiliar territory alike, finding fresh insight on our journey to the present day. We travel in the company of some of the most radical artists, scientists, geniuses and crazies of their age. They show us that great innovations such as relativity, cubism, quantum mechanics, postmodernism and chaos maths are not the incomprehensible, abstract horrors that we assume them to be, but signposts that bring us to the world we live in now. An alternative history of the strangest of centuries. Higgs shows us how the elegant, clockwork universe of the Victorians became increasingly woozy and uncertain; and how we discovered that our world is stranger than we imagine. John Higgs is a British journalist, television writer and producer and author. He is the author of I Have America Surrounded: The Life of Timothy Leary, a biography of the pioneer of psychedelic drugs"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Toronto : Signal, an imprint of McClelland & Stewart, ©2015
ISBN: 9780771038471
Branch Call Number: 909.82 HIG 2015
Characteristics: 341 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm


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Aug 01, 2016

Just excellent - departing from the typical politics-driven explanations of history, Higgs focuses on how, in just the last century, revolutionary scientific discoveries, mirrored in art, literature, philosophy and spiritual practices, are the best explanation for our shifting worldviews, paradigms, and practices.

rayhpl Mar 18, 2016

Weaving together seemingly incoherent themes and ideas, author John Higgs provides a fun and enlightening interpretation of the 20th century, where "strange" perspectives brought some sense to a chaotic world.

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