Mediterranean winter

the pleasures of history and landscape in Tunisia, Sicily, Dalmatia, and Greece

By Kaplan, Robert M.

Publishers Summary:
"Decades ago, Kaplan voyaged from North Africa to Italy, Yugoslavia, and Greece, luxuriating in the radical freedom of youth, unaccountable to time because there was always time to make up for a mistake. He recalls that journey in this Persian miniature of a book, less to look inward into his own past than to look outward in order to dissect the process of learning through travel, in which a succession of new landscapes can lead to books and artwork never before encountered.". "Kaplan first imagines Tunis as the glow of gypsum lamps shimmering against lime-washed mosques; the city he actually discovers is even more intoxicating. He takes the reader to the ramparts of a Turkish kasbah where Carthaginian, Roman, and Byzantine forts once stood: "I could see deep into Algeria over a rib-work of hills so gaunt it seemed the wind had torn the flesh off them." In these austere and aromatic surroundings he discovers Saint Augustine; the courtyards of Tunis lead him to the historical writings of Ibn Khaldun.". "Kaplan takes us to the fifth-century Greek temple at Segesta, where he reflects on the ill-fated Athenian invasion of Sicily. At Hadrian's villa, "Shattered domes revealed clouds moving overhead in countless visions of eternity. It was a place made for silence and for contemplation, where you wanted a book handy. Every corner was a cloister. No view was panoramic: each seemed deliberately composed."". "Kaplan's bus and train travels, his nighttime boat voyages, and his long walks in one archaeological site after another lead him to subjects as varied as the Berber threat to Carthage; the Roman army's hunt for the warlord Jugurtha; the legacy of Byzantine art; the medieval Greek philosopher Georgios Gemistos Plethon, who helped kindle the Italian Renaissance; twentieth-century British literary writing about Greece; and the links between Rodin and the Croatian sculptor Ivan Mestrovic. Within these pages are smells, tastes, and the profundity of chance encounters. Mediterranean Winter begins in Rodin's sculpture garden in Paris, passes through the gritty streets of Marseilles, and ends with a moving epiphany about Greece as the world prepares for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens."--BOOK JACKET.

 Not Rated. Be the first to rate this product!

ISBN
978-0-37550-804-2
Publisher
New York : Random House, c2004.


REVIEWS

Library Journal

Reviewed on February 15, 2004

Kaplan, the best-selling author of Balkan Ghosts and Warrior Politics, who is known as an "influential commentator on world affairs" but also a "travel writer from hell," writes of his trips to the Mediterranean region from the 1970s until the 1990s. Combining several trips into one narrative, he describes his life-changing adv...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

Become a Pro


This feature is only available to Pro subscribers. Please log in, or upgrade your subscription.

Add To My List

cover
by

This feature is only available to Pro subscribers. Please log in, or upgrade your subscription.

Export


This feature is only available to Pro subscribers. Please log in, or upgrade your subscription.

Save List Search Query


This feature is only available to Pro subscribers. Please log in, or upgrade your subscription.

Follow Lists


This feature is only available to Pro subscribers. Please log in, or upgrade your subscription.