Book Review: Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford

October 6, 2010
I bought this book.
Book Review Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford
In ” Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World” author Jack Weatherford shows that history is not simple.

It is a mistake we learn in our schools when we are taught history through memorizing dates in a linear fashion. History is alive, it is complex and there are always small events leading up to a big episode. Professor Weatherford’s book builds a fascinating story around the many achievements of Genghis Kahn, as well as his military genius and leadership skills.

Even though I have heard the name Genghis Kahn before, I’ve never done much reading on him or the Mongol Empire. I missed out on a fascinating story and glad I found this book. The narrative is written in such a way which the reader understands the socio-economic realities the Mongols lived in, as well as the brutality of how wealth was won.

Ihave never appreciated the genius which was Genghis Kahn, always portrayed as a brute in pop culture and by his enemies. Uniting nomad tribes to form a strong Mongolia, organizing armies, creating a working bureaucracy, beginning the concept of diplomatic immunity, understanding economical achievements and even legislating laws which he must also obey (something I cannot say for today’s leaders) are part of his little known heritage.

The legacy of Genghis Kahn is also a major character in this book. Kahn dies half way through, yet his legacy is what keeps the empire’s expansion despite, not because, his sons’ role the society he built and left them.

“Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World” is a wonderful narrative which tackles a complex subject tactfully and with great skill.

My rating for Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World – 5

Zohar – Man of La Book

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6 Comments

  • Pete October 11, 2010 at 10:59 am

    Another great book on Genghis Khan is by John Man. A great combination history/travelogue which actually asks the reader to sympathize with this man whose name is synonymous with pillage and destruction in much of the Western world.

    I had a copy of this at one point, but lost it before I got around to reading it. I'll have to try to dig it up. Good review!

  • zohar October 11, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    Thanks Pete, I’ll have to check out the book by John Man. From what I understand, when Mongolia started to open up to the world they were shocked to hear that their national hero is considered such a villian throughout the world.

  • erisian November 3, 2010 at 2:34 am

    historicity is difficult to nail down, i have fund a number of historical books are more surmise and intelligent guess work based on the given facts.
    ~~
    one of my most memorable reads as a id was “Ghengis Khan and The Mongol Horde” from the public library.

    may have to add this one to the pile

    • zohar November 3, 2010 at 9:20 am

      Thanks for the comment and the suggestions, I’ll have to check out that book

  • Mark April 19, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    http://www.audible.com/tournament Please go to this website and leave your vote for this book; a very interesting and readable history about the Mogolian Empire.

  • infomongolia.com April 23, 2011 at 1:02 am

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