At the time of his death at the age of 95, Eric Hobsbawm (1917-2012) was the most famous historian in the world. His books were translated into more than fifty languages and he was as well known in Brazil and Italy as he was in Britain and the United States. His writings have had a huge and lasting effect on the practice of history. More than half a century after it appeared, his books remain a staple of university reading lists.
He had an extraordinarily long life, with interests covering many countries and many cultures, ranging from poetry to jazz, literature to politics. He experienced life not only as a university teacher but also as a young Communist in the Weimar Republic, a radical student at Cambridge, a political activist, an army conscript, a Soho 'man about town', a Hampstead intellectual, a Cambridge don, an influential journalist, a world traveller, and finally a Grand Old Man of Letters.
In A Life in History, Richard Evans tells the story of Hobsbawm as an academic, but also as witness to history itself, and of the twentieth century's major political and intellectual currents. Eric not only wrote and spoke about many of the great issues of his time, but participated in many of them too, from Communist resistance to Hitler to revolution in Cuba, where he acted as an interpreter for Che Guevara. He was a prominent part of the Jazz scene in Soho in the late 1950s and his writings played a pivotal role in the emergence of New Labour in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
This, the first biography of Eric Hobsbawm, is far more than a study of a professional historian. It is a study of an era.
'This is an excellent book. Like Hobsbawm's own works, it should be read by anyone with a serious interest in history' Richard Vinen, Evening Standard
When Eric Hobsbawm died in 2012, he was the most famous historian in the world. His books were translated into more than fifty languages and renowned as much in Brazil and India as in Britain and the United States.
In A Life in History, Richard Evans tells the story of Hobsbawm as an historian, but also as a witness to history itself. Based on exclusive access to his papers, interviews with his contemporaries and archives from three continents, A Life in History is an extraordinary achievement from one of the leading historians in the world today: a unique study of a man and his era, and of an intellectual who changed the way history is written.
'The great accomplishment of Richard J Evans's brilliantly crafted Eric Hobsbawm: A Life in History is how he takes us into the private, inner world of the master historian' Gavin Jacobson, New Statesman
Richly detailed . . . This is an immensely impressive biography . . . Evans, a distinguished historian of modern Germany, provides clear and well informed accounts of the various historiographical and other controversies that
Hobsbawm was involved in
|Title:||Eric Hobsbawm: A Life in History|
|Author:||Richard J. Evans|