• The Florentines

  • From Dante to Galileo: The Transformation of Western Civilization
  • By: Paul Strathern
  • Narrated by: Roger Clark
  • Length: 14 hrs and 35 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (39 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A sweeping and magisterial 400-year history of both the city and the people who gave birth to the Renaissance.

Between the birth of Dante in 1265 and the death of Galileo in 1642, something happened that transformed the entire culture of Western civilization. Painting, sculpture, and architecture would all visibly change in such a striking fashion that there could be no going back on what had taken place. Likewise, the thought and self-conception of humanity would take on a completely new aspect. Sciences would be born - or emerge in an entirely new guise.

The ideas that broke this mold began, and continued to flourish, in the city of Florence in Northern Central Italy. These ideas, which placed an increasing emphasis on the development of our common humanity - rather than otherworldly spirituality - coalesced in what came to be known as humanism. This philosophy and its new ideas would eventually spread across Italy, yet wherever they took hold, they would retain an element essential to their origin. And as they spread further across Europe, this element would remain.

©2021 Paul Strathern (P)2021 Tantor
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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Good storytelling, not profound analysis

The story of Renaissance Florence competently and memorably told. But Strathern is not a profound historian of ideas or art.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Narrator ruins the narrative

You would think that narrator Roger Clark would have discovered how to pronounce words such as "Signoria" and "Medici" before launching on this reading. Unfortunately, his inept pronunciation caused a wince with each poorly pronounced word, of which there were many. The content of the book is informative and engaging, but the reading made me want to stop listening with each hard G and misplaced accent. Sad that such a sonorous voice ruins the experience.

1 person found this helpful

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Well written. Solid performance. Left me wanting more.

The history of arts and sciences left me wanting more. The history of politics and finance not quite so much. Subsequently, my interest in this book ebbed and flowed a bit. Overall, the reading is a worthy experience. Roger Clark’s performance is rock solid.

1 person found this helpful

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interesting story, wonderful narration

Roger Clark is my favorite narrator. Indeed, he is the stupor mundi of audio narration. Indeed! the greatest of all time. Indeed!!!