In this wholly original and remarkably ambitious work, ‘Atrocitologist’ Matthew White considers man’s inhumanity to man across several thousand years of history. From the First Punic War and the collapse of Mayan rule to the reign of Peter the Great and the cataclysmic events of the Second World War, White’s epic book spans centuries and civilisations as it measures the hundred most violent events in human history. If we study history in order to avoid the mistakes of the past, then there can be no more important place to start.
“Full of the sorts of facts and figures that men like to have at their fingertips when they are at the pub…I’d never heard of the Time of Troubles, but White explains the hows and whys rather brilliantly”
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“Compulsively readable … A major work … White is that rare phenomenon - a serious amateur who does important scholarly work that none of the professionals have taken up. He is thorough, unbiased, sophisticated, rigorous, authoritative, and, I hasten to add, tremendously entertaining. He is a real wit, with a flair for language, and a gift for the pithy, trenchant observation. The book is outstanding”
“A serious book, written with a light touch, on the hundred worst things humans have done to each other (that we know of).”
“An affecting volume”
“A fascinating read, hard going by necessity, but extremely thought provoking on every page”
Matthew White has worked as a law librarian for the past twenty years. In 1997 he began his online Historical Atlas of the Twentieth Century, which won several awards in the early days of the internet. His database of atrocity statistics has become the most popular and widely cited section of the Atlas. Over the years, he has corresponded with many scholars, such as Steven Pinker and Martin Gilbert, and his research has been cited by forty-five published books and over eighty scholarly articles. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.