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The Oxford Illustrated History of Italy (1997)
Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0198205279, Hardcover)George Holmes's well-written, heavily illustrated narrative offers a broad view of Italian history from the early days of the Roman empire to the beginning of the 1990s. Italy as we know it, Holmes notes, is a fairly modern invention, the product of the 19th-century Risorgimiento and the unification of the nation for the first time in centuries. He explores the reasons for this, noting the tendency of Italian regions to turn inward and form small alliances with immediate neighbors, a tendency that expresses itself today in the northern Italian movement for secession. Holmes also considers the role of the arts in the formation of Italian identity and provides snapshots of major points in the nation's history. It all makes for a useful one-volume reference.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:35 -0400)
Italy did not exist as a political unit until just over a century ago, but in previous periods it had been both the heart of the Christian Church and the seedbed for the extraordinary cultural flowering of the Renaissance.
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