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Simon Schama - Author

About the Author

Simon Schama is University Professor of Art History and History at Columbia University in New York, and was awarded a C.B.E. in the 2001 New Year’s Honours List. Since 1995 he has been art and culture critic for The New Yorker and essayist for The Guardian. His award-winning books include Citizens; Rembrandt's Eyes and the History of Britain trilogy. His most recent book, Simon Schama's Power of Art, was published to critical acclaim in 2006.

Featured books by Simon Schama

Other books by Simon Schama

Wordy

Wordy

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/08/2020

'Wordy is about the intoxication of writing; my sense of playful versatility; different voices for different matters: the polemical voice for political columns; the sharp-eyed descriptive take for profiles; poetic precision in grappling with the hard task of translating art into words; lyrical recall for memory pieces. And informing everything a rich sense of the human comedy and the ways it plays through historical time. It's also a reflection on writers who have been shamelessly gloried in verbal abundance; the performing tumble of language - those who have especially inspired me - Dickens and Melville; Joyce and Marquez.' Simon Schama Sir Simon Schama has been at the forefront of the arts, political commentary, social analysis and historical study for over forty years. As a teacher of Art History and an award-winning television presenter of iconic history-based programming, Simon is equally a prolific bestselling writer and award-winning columnist for many of the world's foremost publishers, broadsheet newspapers, periodicals and magazines. His commissioned subjects over the years have been numerous and wide ranging - from the music of Tom Waits, to the works of Sir Quentin Blake; the history of the colour blue, to discussing what skills an actor needs to create a unique performance of Falstaff. Schama's tastes are wide-ranging as they are eloquent, incisive, witty and thought provoking and have entertained and educated the readers of some of the world's most respected publications - the Times, the Guardian, the New Yorker, Harper's Bazaar and Rolling Stone magazine. Wordy is a celebration of one of the world's foremost writers. This collection of fifty essays chosen by the man himself stretches across four decades and is a treasure trove for all those who have a passion for the arts, politics, food and life.

Wordy

Wordy

Author: Simon Schama Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/05/2019

'Wordy is about the intoxication of writing; my sense of playful versatility; different voices for different matters: the polemical voice for political columns; the sharp-eyed descriptive take for profiles; poetic precision in grappling with the hard task of translating art into words; lyrical recall for memory pieces. And informing everything a rich sense of the human comedy and the ways it plays through historical time. It's also a reflection on writers who have been shamelessly gloried in verbal abundance; the performing tumble of language - those who have especially inspired me - Dickens and Melville; Joyce and Marquez.' Simon Schama Sir Simon Schama has been at the forefront of the arts, political commentary, social analysis and historical study for over forty years. As a teacher of Art History and an award-winning television presenter of iconic history-based programming, Simon is equally a prolific bestselling writer and award-winning columnist for many of the world's foremost publishers, broadsheet newspapers, periodicals and magazines. His commissioned subjects over the years have been numerous and wide ranging - from the music of Tom Waits, to the works of Sir Quentin Blake; the history of the colour blue, to discussing what skills an actor needs to create a unique performance of Falstaff. Schama's tastes are wide-ranging as they are eloquent, incisive, witty and thought provoking and have entertained and educated the readers of some of the world's most respected publications - the Times, the Guardian, the New Yorker, Harper's Bazaar and Rolling Stone magazine. Wordy is a celebration of one of the world's foremost writers. This collection of fifty essays chosen by the man himself stretches across four decades and is a treasure trove for all those who have a passion for the arts, politics, food and life.

Rembrandt's Eyes

Rembrandt's Eyes

Author: Simon Schama Format: eBook Release Date: 25/05/2018

Neprevzojdennyj master populyarnogo istoricheskogo povestvovaniya Sajmon SHama s bleskom professional'nogo romanista i skrupuleznost'yu professional'nogo istorika sozdaet dinamichnyj i ob"e;emnyj obraz Niderlandov XVII veka, - tekh vremen, kogda urozhenec Lejdena Rembrandt van Rejn, triumfal'no prodemonstrirovav, kakih vysot sposobna dostich' gollandskaya zhivopis', na mnogie veka zavoeval zvanie velichajshego iz zhivopiscev. Nemnogie doshedshie do nashih dnej dokumental'no podtverzhdennye svedeniya o zhizni i professional'noj deyatel'nosti hudozhnika virtuozno vpleteny v pestruyu tkan' obshirnogo i raznoobraznogo istoricheskogo konteksta. Kommercheskaya sumatoha i politicheskie intrigi, protivostoyanie ispanskih Gabsburgov i Gollandskoj respubliki, katolikov i protestantov, rascvet demokraticheskogo iskusstva Niderlandov i iskryashchayasya zhivopis' "e;hudozhnika korolej"e; Rubensa - burlyashchij, prichudlivyj mir, gde rozhdalos' iskusstvo Novogo vremeni. Mir, kotoryj stal podmostkami zhizni i tvorchestva gollandca Rembrandta van Rejna, - hudozhnika, zhivopis' kotorogo, kazhetsya, torzhestvuet nad real'nost'yu.

THE POWER OF ART

THE POWER OF ART

Author: Simon Schama Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2017

U velikogo iskusstva uzhasnye manery! S pervyh strok ehtogo dramatichnogo povestvovaniya stanovitsya ochevidno: znamenityj istorik i populyarizator nauki Sajmon SHama ne nameren primeryat' na sebya rol' avtoritetnogo muzejnogo gida, nespeshno vedushchego ot shedevra k shedevru doverchivuyu gruppu zhazhdushchih prikosnut'sya k prekrasnomu. A potomu ne nadejtes' na legkuyu progulku po muzejnym zalam - vmesto nee ehkscentrichnyj provozhatyj, ni sekundy ne pomeshkav na poroge, prosto vtolknet vas v dveri masterskoj, gde v ehtot samyj moment yavlyaetsya na svet odno iz samyh znachimyh proizvedenij iskusstva. Vozmozhno, perspektiva stat' svidetelem ehtogo i licom k licu stolknut'sya s ego sozdatelem ne trevozhit vas zaranee? Nu chto zh, avtor postaraetsya ehto ispravit'. Reshitel'no sporya s temi, kto schitaet romanticheskimi skazkami istorii o myatushchihsya geniyah i muchitel'nosti akta tvoreniya, Sajmon SHama besstrashno rassuzhdaet o moshchi, kotoroj nevozmozhno protivostoyat', o nepreodolimoj zhazhde, o sokrushitel'noj strasti - o preobrazuyushchej sile iskusstva, pered licom kotoroj okazyvayutsya bessil'ny i zritel', i sam tvorec.

The Face of Britain

The Face of Britain

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/10/2016

Simon Schama brings Britain to life through its portraits, as seen in the five-part BBC series The Face of Britain and the major National Portrait Gallery exhibition Churchill and his painter locked in a struggle of stares and glares; Gainsborough watching his daughters run after a butterfly; a black Othello in the nineteenth century; the poet-artist Rossetti trying to capture on canvas what he couldn't possess in life; a surgeon-artist making studies of wounded faces brought in from the Battle of the Somme; a naked John Lennon five hours before his death. In the age of the hasty glance and the selfie, Simon Schama has written a tour de force about the long exchange of looks from which British portraits have been made over the centuries: images of the modest and the mighty; of friends and lovers; heroes and working people. Each of them - the image-maker, the subject, and the rest of us who get to look at them - are brought unforgettably to life. Together they build into a collective picture of Britain, our past and our present, a look into the mirror of our identity at a moment when we are wondering just who we are. Combining his two great passions, British history and art history, for the first time, Schama's extraordinary storytelling reveals the truth behind the nation's most famous portrayals of power, love, fame, the self, and the people. Mesmerising in its breadth and its panache, and beautifully illustrated, with more than 150 images from the National Portrait Gallery, The Face of Britain will change the way we see our past - and ourselves.

Rembrandt's Eyes

Rembrandt's Eyes

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/09/2014

This dazzling, unconventional biography shows us why, more than three centuries after his death, Rembrandt continues to exert such a hold on our imagination. Deeply familiar to us through his enigmatic self-portraits, few facts are known about the Leiden miller's son who tasted brief fame before facing financial ruin (he was even forced to sell his beloved wife Saskia's grave). The true biography of Rembrandt, as Simon Schama demonstrates, is to be discovered in his pictures. Interweaving of seventeenth-century Holland, Schama allows us to see Rembrandt in a completely fresh and original way.

Dead Certainties

Dead Certainties

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/04/2013

On 13 September 1759, General James Wolfe, having led the British troops up the St Lawrence to victory in the Battle of Quebec, died on the Heights of Abraham. Schama examines this death, and how Wolfe was made to die again - through the spectacular painting by Benjamin West, and through the writings of the 19th-century historian Francis Parkman. Schama's second death concerns Parkman's uncle, George Parkman of Harvard Medical College, who disappeared in 1849 in mysterious circumstances and who was rumoured to have been murdered by a colleague. Through these incidents, Schama sheds light on the writing of history, the history of history, and the relationship of 'story' to 'history'.

Citizens

Citizens

Author: Simon Schama Format: eBook Release Date: 02/05/2012

From one of the truly preeminent historians of our time, this is a landmark book chronicling the French Revolution. Simon Schama deftly refutes the contemporary notion that the French Revolution represented an uprising of the oppressed poor against a decadent aristocracy and corrupt court. He argues instead that the revolution was born of a rift among the elite over the speed of progress toward modernity and science, social and economic change. Schama's approach, weaving in and out of private and public lives in the fashion of a novel, brings us closer than we have ever been to the harrowing and seductive French Revolution.

American Future

American Future

Author: Simon Schama Format: eBook Release Date: 19/05/2009

With eloquence, wit, passion, and irony, The American Future traces the history of an idea: that of our national destiny.A book of beautiful writing, peppered with wisecracks, slashed with rapier thrusts. Philadelphia InquirerA De Tocqueville for the 21st century, Simon Schama, NBCC Award winning author of Rough Crossings offers an essential, historical, long view analysis of the American character in The American Future. Shama examines four themeswar, race and faith, immigration, and custodianship of the landthrough the prism of the historic 2008 presidential election in a magnificent work that the Wall Street Journal calls a celebration of American resiliency.Niall Ferguson says, I hope Obama will have this book on his bedside table.

Rough Crossings

Rough Crossings

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/09/2007

As the American War of Independence reaches its climax, a plantation slave and a British Naval Officer embark on an epic journey in search of freedom. Divided by barriers of race but united in their ambitions for equality, their convictions will change attitudes towards slavery forever. Sweeping from the deep south of America to the scorched earth of West Africa, Rough Crossings is a compelling true story that marks the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade in the British Empire.

Citizens

Citizens

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/08/2004

One of the great landmarks of modern history publishing, Simon Schama's Citizens: A Chronicle of the French Revolution is the most authoritative social, cultural and narrative history of the French Revolution ever produced. 'Monumental ... provocative and stylish, Simon Schama's account of the first few years of the great Revolution in France, and of the decades that led up to it, is thoughtful, informed and profoundly revisionist' Eugen Weber, The New York Times Book Review 'The most marvellous book I have read about the French Revolution' Richard Cobb, The Times 'Dazzling - beyond praise - He has chronicled the vicissitudes of that world with matchless understanding, wisdom, pity and truth, in the pages of this marvellous book' Bernard Levin, Sunday Times 'Provides an unrivalled impression of the currents and contradictions which made up this terrible sequence of events' Antony Beevor, Express Simon Schama is University Professor in Art History and History at Columbia University in New York, and one of the best-known scholars in Britain in any field. He is the prize-winning author of numerous books, including Dead Certainties (Unwarranted Speculations), Landscape and Memory, Rembrandt's Eyes and three volumes of A History of Britain. He is also the writer-presenter of historical and art-historical documentaries for BBC Television. He lives outside New York City with his wife and children.

Landscape and Memory

Landscape and Memory

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/03/1996

The forest primeval, the river of life, the sacred mount - read `Landscape and Memory' to have these explained... `Landscape and Memory' is a history book unlike any other. In a series of journeys through space and time, it examines our relationship with the landscape around us - rivers, mountains, forests - the impact each of them has had on our culture and imaginations, and the way in which we, in turn, have shaped them to answer our needs. This is not a conventional history book, but a book that builds up its argument by a series of poetic stories and impressions which cumulatively have the effect of a great novel. The forest primeval, the river of life, the sacred mount - at the end of this wonderful book we understand where these ideas have come from, why they are so compelling and how they still lie all around us.

Patriots and Liberators

Patriots and Liberators

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/03/1992

A reissue of Simon Schama's landmark study of the Netherlands from 1780-1813, this is a tale of a once-powerful nation's desparate struggle to survive the treacheries and brutality of European war and politics. Between 1780 and 1813 the Dutch Republic - a country once rich enough to be called the cash till of Europe and powerful enough to make war with England - was stripped of its colonies, invaded by its enemies, driven to the edge of bankruptcy, and, finally, reduced to becoming an appendage of the French empire - an appendage not even the French seemed to value overmuch. Out of these events Simon Schama has constructed a gripping chronicle of revolution and privateering, constitutions and coups, in a tiny nation desperately struggling to stay afloat in a sea of geopolitics. Like his classics `The Embarrassment of Riches' and `Citizens', `Patriots and Liberators' combines a mastery of historical sources with an unabashed delight in narrative. The result confirms Schama as a historian in the finest tradition - one whose study of the past reveals volumes about the present. This is one of our most revered historians' greatest works, and this new Perennial edition will reintroduce his genius to a new generation of readers.

The Embarrassment of Riches

The Embarrassment of Riches

Author: Simon Schama Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/11/1988

This is the book that made Simon Schama's reputation when first published in 1987. A historical masterpiece, it is an epic account of Dutch Culture in the Golden Age of Rembrandt and van Diemen. In this brilliant work that moves far beyond the conventions of social or cultural history, Simon Schama investigates the astonishing case of a people's self-invention. He shows how, in the 17th-century, a modest assortment of farming, fishing and shipping communities, without a shared language, religion or government, transformed themselves into a formidable world empire - the Dutch republic.