- Publisher: Bloomsbury India (2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1408848163
- ISBN-13: 978-1408848166
- Product Dimensions: 15.7 x 3.4 x 23.5 cm
- Shipping Weight: 780 g
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
War and Gold: A Five-Hundred-Year History of Empires, Adventures and Debt Paperback – 2014
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This clever history of money weighs its enduring ability to destabilise society
For people brought up in the internet age, the concept of an economy propped up by a rock, a hill, a mountain of gold might seem quirky. If so, Kwarteng's detailed tracking of the shift from gold to paper will come as a revelation
. Kwarteng might not know how to stabilise a financial system that floats on credit, but he certainly understands the forces and the mistakes that have led to that destabilisation.”The Observer (UK)
Few stones are left unlifted in this study The result is a retelling from a senior, political, financial viewpoint. It's high table or, to give a more modern description, c-suite stuff.”The Independent (UK)
A complicated story well told, from which financial lessons emerge naturally without Kwarteng finding it necessary to bludgeon the reader with his message.” Financial Times (UK)
A meaty, thoughtful, and well-written book”Literary Review
Kwarteng is thorough and insightful, weaving a narrative that transports the reader convincingly through time and place. He points out that victory has just as much financial cost as defeat.”London Evening Standard
"War and Gold is a chronicle of fiscal ruination and redemption, with the emphasis on the former Mr. Kwarteng, a heroic reader, has compiled a wonderful bibliography and gathered a colorful grouping of monetary characters to people his chapters.” James Grant, Wall Street Journal
This near-perfect volume appears with almost preternaturally perfect timing around the centenary of the beginning of World War I War and Gold is a compelling successor to Liaquat Ahamed's delightful and invaluable The Lords of Finance, awarded the 2010 Pulitzer Prize in history. Kwarteng delivers up a successor volume worthy of such a prize. It extends Ahamed's temporal framework by a factor of ten, to 500 years. Kwarteng, too, has compelling narrative virtuosity. His book is full of dramatic, charming, often wry vignettes of fascinating characters heroes and villains, adventurers and knaves spinning around, and off, the axis of the gold standard, in war and in peace.” Ralph Benko, Forbes.com
This carefully documented, scholarly, well-written work provides an account of the development of international financial institutions over the past five centuries Overall, the book is a captivating narrative of monetary history that starts and ends with gold.” CHOICE
A well-written history of money...It's refreshing to read such a concise and cutting book” Jim Landers, Dallas Morning News
"War and Gold' offers fresh, big-picture perspective on issues as tangible as our wallets' contents.” Alan Wallace, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
"The title's implications aside, this is really a history of moneythoroughly satisfying and remarkably accessible...While John Kenneth Galbraith's 1975 Money: Whence it Came, Where It Went remains the subject's touchstone, Kwarteng superbly brings that volume up to date in explaining the almost unexplainable." Publishers Weekly, starred review
Absorbing a fascinating, lucid and serious history of money, from the discovery of the wealth of the Americas to the present financial crisis.”The Times (UK)
Enormously entertaining so engagingly written that readers of all political persuasions should enjoy it.”Sunday Times (UK) --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Top customer reviews
Kwarteng starts off with the Spanish Empire. The Spanish brought back loads of silver and gold from South America. They used the precious metals to fund their European war programs. This eventually lead to their ruin. Most of the book deals with the 20th Century. First the British are forced off the gold standard and later the Americans. Kwarteng lists all the major monetary and financial events of the last century. The world wars were leading causes of changes to the financial structure. There is also several chapters on the current state of financial affairs.
Kwarteng`s book is well researched. The reader will get, all the necessary background information on our monetary system. I did have one major complaint with the book. Most of the material, tends to be more of a chronological listing of events. I am inclined to enjoy books, that expand into ideas and opinions. I would have preferred, a lot more editorial content.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
My biggest quibble is my personal belief that any attempt to write history become mere punditry when the events are more recent than 25 years in the past. Nothing an author can do about this, history simply need to age a couple of decades before it can be decanted.
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