Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Barbarous Years by Bernard Bailyn

This book's full title is "The Barbarous Years, The Peopling of British North America: Conflict of Civilizations, 1600 to 1675". We live in such a non-violent world compared to our pass that I think we do not appreciate how violent our pass was. The settling of North America was dangerous and violent.

I thought that the depiction of North American natives was quite good and quite sympathetic. However, I realize that there are very different views on this subject. There are also huge variations in, almost staggering, views on the population of North America at the time it was found by Europeans.

This is a great book and very readable one on how Europeans came to populate North America. If you are at all interested in the early settlement years of Europeans in North America, this is the book to read. It is not only the violence that might shock you, but also how many Europeans that died trying to settle the "new world". Ironically, without help from the Indians that might now have managed it.

There is a review of this book at See Harvard Magazine. The author of this review, Daniel K. Richter, is quite critical of Bernard Bailyn's treatment of the Indians. Alan Taylor, in a The New Republican article is also critical of the book, but is critical on how bleak a picture that Bailyn paints of this period.

I cannot find much in the way of video for Bernard Bailyn. However, there is one YouTube video of Bailyn talking about the relationship between the United States federal government and the states. Also, there is Bailyn giving the First White House Millennium Evening Lecture . This lecture is called the "Early American Experience".

On my website is how to find this book on Amazon if you care to purchase it. See Bailyn. Also, this book review and other books I have reviewed are on my website at Book Reviews.

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