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The Great Wall China Against the World 1000 BC - AD 2000 by Julia Lovell

The Great Wall China Against the World 1000 BC - AD 2000


The Great Wall China Against the World 1000 BC - AD 2000 by Julia Lovell

Legendarily 2,200 years old and 4,300 miles long, China's Great Wall seems to be a confident physical statement made by an advanced civilization, anxious to draw a line between itself and the 'barbarians' at its borders. But behind the Wall's intimidating exterior, and the myths that have built up around it, lies a history far more fragmented and far less illustrious than its crowds of modern-day tourists might imagine. In this epic history exploring the conquests and cataclysms of the Chinese empire over the past 3,000 years, Julia Lovell restores a human dimension to this astonishing structure: examining the emperors who planned new phases of building; the people who constructed, lived and guarded the walls; and the millions who died - of overwork, starvation, cold and combat. The Great Wall is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand China's past, present and future.


Fascinating... From the book's title, one expects a history of the Great Wall, and in that Lovell does not disappoint. But she delivers much, much more.Guardian * Guardian * An exhilarating tale. Lovell's sweep and style propels the story along at a rapid clip, managing to be both erudite and racy at the same time.Financial Times * Financial Times * An excellent, fluent history of northern China... intriguing. Observer * Observer *

About the Author

Julia Lovell was born in 1975 and teaches Chinese history and literature at the University of Cambridge. She has recently translated the prize-winning Chinese novel, A Dictionary of Maqiao. She writes on China for The Times, Guardian, Economist and TLS.

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Book Info

Publication date

8th February 2007


Julia Lovell

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Atlantic Books


432 pages


Asian history



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