Read extract  

Small Wars, Far Away Places

The Genesis of the Modern World 1945-65

4.06 based on 164 ratings & 29 reviews on Goodreads.com

2013 Long-listed

BBC Four Samuel Johnson Prize

Synopsis

The collapse of Western colonial empires in the twenty years after the Second World War led to a series of vicious struggles for power - in Africa, Asia and the Middle East - whose bloody consequences haunt us still.

Acclaimed historian Michael Burleigh's brilliant analytic skills and clear eye for common themes underpins this powerful account of those conflicts. He takes us on a historical journey from Algeria to Cuba, from Malaysia to Palestine, and from Kenya to Vietnam and, in so doing, he reframes mid-twentieth-century history by forcing us to look away from the Cold War to the hot wars that continue to afflict us.

The result is a dazzling work of history, which examines the death of colonialism with passion, insight and genuine understanding of what it feels like to be caught in the middle of realpolitik.

In the media

Vividly written and stimulating ... the raw truth, conveyed in scintillating language by a master of historical irony and of the grimly entertaining. If history for grown-ups is what you're after, this is it.
Sunday Telegraph
The violent geopolitical shifts of the immediate postwar years constitute a dramatic saga, which Burleigh recounts with panache and wit ... lucid and persuasive.
The Sunday Times
Harsh and vivid
Financial Times