The “swerve” in question is the Renaissance,
which began in Italy six centuries or so ago and brought the world we know into being. And in this new, sure-to-be-best-selling cultural history, Stephen Greenblatt turns the story of its birth into a grand adventure.
Greenblatt—an English professor who is best known as the author of Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare—argues that civilized, secular, scientific modernity was envisioned by a Roman poet years before the birth of Christ, suppressed by Christians for well over a thousand years, and rediscovered by a former papal secretary in 1417. It sounds a bit like a real-life Da Vinci Code—but the mysteries you’ll encounter are real, and reading about them will actually make you smarter.
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