Friday, November 16, 2012

World History By James Stobaugh

World History: Observations  Assessments from Creation to Today by James Stobaugh published by Master Books, is a fully illustrated history text for high school students. This book is one of a series of a thorough alternative high school social studies curriculum.   The quality presentation of this book rivals that of many popular history books or public school texts.  This is the conservative answer to all those revisionist, liberal revision of history that are disguised as history books that are so common in public schools and colleges today. 

The ambitious  title in of itself is rather broad- encompassing the whole of world history from the pre colonial times to the modern day. Historical events, as well as cultural and social events are captured.  The text begins with the story of Mesopotamia.  I(ntegrated within the coverage of widely known historical facts are biblical stories as well.  There is a focus on biblical personalities and events in the context of world events and geographic locations.  This gives the student a comprehensive view of history in its entirety!  For example- the old testament prophet Daniel is discussed in the context of the ancient Babylonian empire.  Moses is covered within the historical context of Egypt.  Culturally relevant artwork, archeological sites and historicalfigures are photographed as well.  The information is presented in an easy to read magazine article type of format in contrast to large passages of bland text.  Basically the student can pick up this book starting with any lesson within any chapter.  There is also a glossary and a history timeline in the appendix.

Aside from the recognition that for many, homeschooling is not an option- The book is complete with photographs, charts and other visual material- just as any other history text. It would make a good suppliment top any public school curriculum. With a BS in History, I greatly appreciated the perspective of this book and the recognition that history is not all about relativism, but there are morals and absolutes in life and history as well.  The only downside to this book is that all the photos and graphics are in black and white and not color.  Instead of the glossy full color pages that one would expect from a modern text, this book is in black and white- which is the only dissapointing feature.  I can only assume that this is to keep the costs of the book down to $24.99  in contrast to college and other public school texts which might cost over $75 for just one book! This book also came with a teacher's guide as well.  As a blogger for New Leaf publishers I received this book, published by Master Books for the purpose of writing this review.

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