Reformations by Carlos M. N. Eire
The Early Modern World, 1450-1650

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“Reformations” is valuable as an encyclopedia, but I wonder how many “beginners and nonspecialists” will be left thirsting for more.
-NY Times


This fast-paced survey of Western civilization’s transition from the Middle Ages to modernity brings that tumultuous period vividly to life. Carlos Eire, popular professor and gifted writer, chronicles the two-hundred-year era of the Renaissance and Reformation with particular attention to issues that persist as concerns in the present day. Eire connects the Protestant and Catholic Reformations in new and profound ways, and he demonstrates convincingly that this crucial turning point in history not only affected people long gone, but continues to shape our world and define who we are today.


The book focuses on the vast changes that took place in Western civilization between 1450 and 1650, from Gutenberg’s printing press and the subsequent revolution in the spread of ideas to the close of the Thirty Years’ War. Eire devotes equal attention to the various Protestant traditions and churches as well as to Catholicism, skepticism, and secularism, and he takes into account the expansion of European culture and religion into other lands, particularly the Americas and Asia. He also underscores how changes in religion transformed the Western secular world. A book created with students and nonspecialists in mind, Reformations is an inspiring, provocative volume for any reader who is curious about the role of ideas and beliefs in history.

About Carlos M. N. Eire

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Carlos Eire is T. L. Riggs Professor of History and Religious Studies, Yale University. He is the author of several scholarly books and two memoirs, including Waiting for Snow in Havana, for which he received the National Book Award. He lives in Guilford, CT.
Published June 28, 2016 by Yale University Press. 914 pages
Genres: History, Travel. Non-fiction
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NY Times

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Reviewed by Michael massing on Aug 12 2016

“Reformations” is valuable as an encyclopedia, but I wonder how many “beginners and nonspecialists” will be left thirsting for more.

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