'If winter comes, can spring be far behind?' ― Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ode to the West Wind / Get 10% off all books and free UK p&p. Offer applied at checkout

Civilisations: First Contact / The Cult of Progress

Imprint: Profile Books
Pages: 288
Subject: History & Classics
Illustrations: Fully illustrated throughout

Civilisations: First Contact / The Cult of Progress

As seen on TV

David Olusoga

Companion to the BBC series CIVILISATIONS

Hardback(Preorder only)
9781781259979 (Published 5 Apr 2018)

About the book

Companion to the major new BBC documentary series CIVILISATIONS, presented by Mary Beard, David Olusoga and Simon Schama

Oscar Wilde said 'Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life.' Was he right? In Civilisations, David Olusoga travels the world to piece together the shared histories that link nations.

In Part One, First Contact, we discover what happened to art in the great Age of Discovery, when civilisations encountered each other for the first time. Although undoubtedly a period of conquest and destruction, it was also one of mutual curiosity, global trade and the exchange of ideas.

In Part Two, The Cult of Progress, we see how the Industrial Revolution transformed the world, impacting every corner, and every civilisation, from the cotton mills of the Midlands through Napoleon's conquest of Egypt to the decimation of both Native American and Maori populations and the advent of photography in Paris in 1839.

Incredible art - both looted and created - relays the key events and their outcomes throughout the world.

About the author

David Olusoga is an Anglo-Nigerian historian and producer. Working across radio and television, his programmes have explored the themes of colonialism, slavery and scientific racism. He has written three books: The Kaiser's Holocaust, The World's War and Black and British: A Forgotten History, was a Waterstones History Book of the Year 2016, which was longlisted for the 2017 Orwell Prize and won the PEN Hessell-Tiltman and Longman History Today Trustees awards.
Find him on Twitter @David Olusoga


Praise for Black and British: A Forgotten History You could not ask for a more judicious, comprehensive and highly readable survey of a part of British history that has been so long overlooked or denied. David Olusoga is a superb guide.

- Adam Hochschild


- Observer

[A] comprehensive and important history of black Britain . . . Written with a wonderful clarity of style and with great force and passion.

- Kwasi Kwarteng, Sunday Times

A radical reappraisal of the parameters of history, exposing lacunae in the nation's version of its past

- Arifa Akbar, Guardian

Praise for The Kaiser's Holocaust [A] haunting book ... an unforgettable and unflinching account of a neglected atrocity

- Sunday Telegraph

Additional Information

Imprint: Profile Books
Pages: 288
Subject: History & Classics
Illustrations: Fully illustrated throughout