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Atrocities: The 100 Deadliest Episodes in Human History 1st Edition, Kindle Edition
by Matthew White(Author), Steven Pinker (Foreword, Contributor)
69 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393345230
ISBN-10: 0393345238
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eBook features:
  • Highlight, take notes, and search in the book
  • Page numbers are just like the physical edition
  • Length: 689 pages
  • Word Wise: Enabled
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Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Digital List Price: $19.95
Print List Price: $19.95 Save $9.96 (50%)‎

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Editorial Reviews

“[White] doesn’t take sides so much as report the facts―and the death tolls. . . . Full of fascinating information about parts of the world little-known to most Westerners.”
- Washington Post

“White . . . gives voice to the suffering of ordinary people that, inexorably, has defined every historical epoch.”
- Military Review

“A fascinating read thanks to White’s keen grasp of history and his wry take on the villains of the past.”
- Christian Science Monitor
About the Author
Matthew White is the creator of the online Historical Atlas of the 20th Century. His data has been cited by forty-five published books and eighty scholarly articles. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.
Product details
File Size: 2615 KB
Print Length: 689 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0393081923
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1 edition (November 7, 2011)
Publication Date: October 31, 2011
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English
Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
Not Enabled
Word Wise: Enabled
Lending: Not Enabled
Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #311,574 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
#398 in Books > History > Historical Study & Educational Resources > Reference
#1917 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > History > World
#3787 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > History > Military
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Top customer reviews
Historically, Life Has No Value …
ByDACHokieVINE VOICEon November 11, 2014
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
ATROCITIES: THE 100 DEADLIEST EPISODES IN HUMAN HISTORY provides a blunt view at mankind’s destructive ways from the Second Persian War (480 BC) to the Second Congo War (2002). Between these two bookends are a multitude of wars, genocides, rebellions, crusades, revolts and general acts/missions of deadly cruelty that consumed hundreds of millions of lives. As astonishing as the sheer number of deaths are, even more astonishing is that author Matthew White only details and ranks (by death toll) the 100 deadliest events. What makes ATROCITIES such a worthy reference is not only the abundance of details, but the presentation of the material along with White’s mordant narration.

Organized in a chronological manner, each “episode” (war, genocide, etc.) is presented as a chapter. Each chapter includes a summary header that encapsulates the episode by including: death toll, participants, time frame, location, general reasoning behind episode, who or what’s to blame and the episode’s rank on the list of 100. Following the header, White delves into the dirty details of the event in a succinct manner that is rich with details. His witty summaries of each episode include a degree of sarcasm that somehow manages to blend the grave subject manner with a bit of humor. The humor relates mostly to how mankind’s stupidity often leads to mass death … many of the episodes presents will have readers shaking their heads. White makes the depressing topic rather enjoyable to read. There are no illustrations/pictures (other than the cover) and only a handful of maps in the book, but the text renders such visual aids unnecessary. The appendices at the end of the book provide the rationale behind the rankings, additional summarized data and the sources used to create the book.

Overall, ATROCITIES is a terrific and useful reference that brings to light many lesser-known historical events from all over the world. There were quite a few episodes that I had never heard of, especially in Africa. I have always enjoyed almanacs, older versions of the Guinness Book of World records and The Book of Lists, so this book really hit the mark with me.
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Man's inhumanity to man on parade! A history text ...
ByK. Renseon April 24, 2015
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Man's inhumanity to man on parade! A history text, a sociology primer, and casebook on deviant psychology superbly written and organized. Mr. White is a scholar. This, his witty, sometimes sardonic and comprehensive survey of human greed on a massive scale, teachers all one needs to know why man's defining characteristic is the willingness -- nay, compulsion -- to kill other human beings. No education is complete without a thorough reading of this delightful, appalling and altogether damning chronicle of that monster that is humankind.
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... few years ago under its original title of The Great Big Book of Horrible Things
ByJohn Auguston January 11, 2017
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I read this book a few years ago under its original title of The Great Big Book of Horrible Things. I’m re-reading it now because it’s oddly comforting to see how bad things have been in ages past. Somehow, humanity made it to 2017, so there’s a good chance we’ll make it through again.

It's not a book you sit down and read in a sitting. Instead, it's great for moments of downtime, or a few chapters before bed.
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Treatise on the Nature of Humans
ByJoon January 4, 2017
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
This is a very important informative read.
It tells us everything we need to know about human nature.
It supports my belief that until our species understands
our 'nature' we are doomed to repeat these 'atrocitites'.
Should be required reading for all senior high school
and college students.
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... long been a fan of the website and was happy to find there was a book to purchase
Bybexzeon July 11, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I have long been a fan of the website and was happy to find there was a book to purchase. "Atrocities" is an excellent, thoughtful, and fact-filled compendium of death tolls and human suffering in a well-organized format. The author gives his opinions and discusses how he arrived at them based on available sources. Full of information and very readable.
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Fine troll through hellish behavior
ByTom M.on November 13, 2013
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
What a chronicle of evil deeds on a massive scale!
The author's clean and even-handed and light style keeps the horrificness of it all not just bearable but downright fascinating.
How we manage to so efficiently find ways to slaughter ourselves, show the most savage of instincts and yet continue to grow and grow in population!
A book about as solid as some very iffy historical evidence regarding numbers (and here is where a good deal of doubt creeps in) of the slaughtered and size of armies permits.
Fascinating read.
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Review of wars
ByWarcoachon August 28, 2017
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Good book but not what I expected. Just a massive historic review of the world's most destructive wars. We'll researched though and not just a dry recital of facts.
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Fantastic bedtime read!
ByJames Gon December 21, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
If you're a history buff or just like reading about human nature you'll really enjoy this book. It gives a nice general overview of major historical events but don't expect it to go into great details. If you want to know more about a specific event then you'll definitely need to read on your own. But, if you want a nice, casual stroll through history then this is your book!

It's divided up nicely and each event is highlighted in bite size chunks allowing you to read just one or two stories right before bed.
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Most recent customer reviews
Much better than expected
Much better than expected, was expecting horrible descriptions and pictures, but instead found succinct entries written with a sense of humor and no pics!
Published 1 month ago by Dana Clenney
Good to go!
While it is extremely hard to write upon such a subject. I.E. The Horrors that man inflicts upon himself and yet still keep the reader's interest.Read more
Published 2 months ago by David D. Lawson
One Star
its the same damn book as Atrocitology!
Published 3 months ago by Robert S. Dudley
Lots of information that isn't so mainstream
Very interesting book. I'm a history buff, and this had lots of info I didn't know about.
Published 4 months ago by clash715
Finally! Snark returns to history
In the dry, stuffy world of historical non-fiction, humor must be taboo. I've read enough boring, bland history books to fill a small library.Read more
Published 1 year ago by David K.
A must read
Educational and entetaining. It should be required reading for all high schools.
Published 1 year ago by david w
Am on my 5th time reading it! Fascinating material ...
Am on my 5th time reading it! Fascinating material presented in a extremely organized and interesting way. Never be afraid to say "there is no new history!"
Published 1 year ago by Amazon Customer
Two Stars
I didn't really like the book that much.
Published 1 year ago by David Burke
Daughter liked
This was a gift. Daughter liked it
Published 1 year ago by Tina W
Sanitized and Misleading
According to the US Census of 1890, 200.000 Native North Americans were accounted for while historians estimate the original population prior to the arrival of the Pilgrims...Read more
Published 1 year ago by Dr. F. Friedrich Kling
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