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The Rich From Slaves to Super-Yachts: A 2,000-Year History by John Kampfner
  

The Rich From Slaves to Super-Yachts: A 2,000-Year History

History   The Real World   

Sue Baker's view...

Starting with the Roman, Marcus Licinius Crassus who would have put the infamous landlord, Rachman in the shade and who “would have felt quite at home with the Russia of the oligarchs” John Kampfner introduces us to some of history’s mega-rich elite, characters like Cosimo Medici who illustrate the different facets of being super rich. As this is a look at how the super rich are always present in society, he doesn’t concentrate on today’s problems but by the end of the book the pattern is clear, bankers, hedge fund managers and internet billionaires make their appearance but as John Kampfner states “History, when it comes to the rich, has a habit of repeating itself”. A despairing thought and much of John Kampfner’s book, although an illuminating and fascinating study is a sad testosterone fuelled parade of over-reaching and deeply unpleasant characters.

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Synopsis

The Rich From Slaves to Super-Yachts: A 2,000-Year History by John Kampfner

From the Orwell Prize shortlisted author of Freedom for Sale, The Rich is the fascinating history of how economic elites from ancient Egypt to the present day have gained and spent their money. Starting with the Romans and Ancient Egypt and culminating with the oligarchies of modern Russia and China, it compares and contrasts the rich and powerful down the ages and around the world. What unites them? Have the same instincts of entrepreneurship, ambition, vanity, greed and philanthropy applied throughout? As contemporary politicians, economists and the public wrestle with the inequities of our time - the parallel world inhabited by the ultra-wealthy at a time of broader hardship - it is salutary to look to history for explanations. This book synthesises thousands of years of human behaviour and asks the question: is the development of the globalised super-rich over the past twenty years anything new?

Reviews

'Praise for John Kampfner: One of Britain's most distinguished political writers'

-Mail on Sunday


About the Author

John Kampfner is one of the UK's most respected and iconoclastic authors, broadcasters and commentators, and has been a well-known public voice on politics, international affairs and civil liberties for the past two decades. From 2005 to 2008 he was Editor of the New Statesman, and he contributes regularly to the Guardian, Independent, Financial Times and other newspapers. His previous books include Freedom for Sale and the bestselling Blair's Wars. He lives in London.

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Book Info

Publication date

2nd October 2014

Author

John Kampfner

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Author's Website

www.jkampfner.net/
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Publisher

Little, Brown an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group

Format

Hardback
480 pages

Categories

History
The Real World

Economic history
Social classes

ISBN

9781408704264

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