Reddit Reddit reviews Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World

We found 10 Reddit comments about Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

Historical Asian Biographies
Historical Biographies
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World
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10 Reddit comments about Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World:

u/Quackattackaggie · 279 pointsr/AskHistorians

Genghis Khan left the cities to be ruled by their own people for the most part if they surrendered, which left them completely intact. The city would be required to pay a percentage of all goods to the Khan. In fact, this was substantially the Mongolian economy. For the most part, Mongols could not smelt, make pottery, craft with silk, mine, etc. Despite this, the entire Kingdom grew exponentially wealthy as peoples were conquered. It took a truly huge empire that spread across most of Asia, into the middle east, and into Europe. It would have encompassed more land if the heat didn't mess with their horses, men, and bows so badly. If the leaders did not surrender, or refused to pay tribute, there was no mercy. Cities could be razed. People were killed needlessly to instill fear. He could be brutal if it benefited him.

For the most part, conquered cities didn't need to produce military goods. They may have contributed arrows, but the Mongols mainly fought from horseback. They preferred to fight from distances as they believed getting blood on you would contaminate your soul. They conquered infantry and only used the troops they capture to lead a charge as a sacrifice to ease mongol losses. They had little need for heavy armor, swords, etc. In fact, their armor was very light and modtly covered their fronts to prevent retreat or to lighten the load. What they did enjoy were siege machines. The Mongols played a direct role in creating and furthering the catapult, flame thrower (gun powder with a slow burn), and cannons.

The Mongols also thoroughly pillaged towns. They would evacuate the town and systematically go building to building looking for anything valuable. Before Genghis Khan (pronounced jane-gis not gain-gis by the way), pillagers kept whatever they found. But under Genghis Khan, all of the booty was piled up and distributed by a shares allocation.

This is going beyond the question, but I thought I'd add how stable the land was that was conquered. Genghis Khan is largely shown as a barbarian in modern depictions. However, this is in a large part due to a play of Voltaire depicting him that way. He was using him as an allegory of the French king to avoid being prosecuted, but the image stuck to the great Khan. Genghis khan built and ensured safe roads, thousands of public schools, a writing system, freedom of religion, diplomatic immunity, paper money, and his influence is still reverberating through the modern world. They also assembled one of the largest sailing fleets in history, inspiring the British and Spanish armada. Edit: as I clarify later in this thread, he wasn't a nice guy. He was often brutal, but always cunning. He was constantly learning and was as elite a strategist as has lived.

Edit: to add another fascinating point related to your question, the armies of the Mongols spread out for miles. It could take days to ride from the left side to the right side, even in organized hunts as opposed to war. This was due to the horses needing to graze since everybody was mounted and each soldier had up to four or five horses. When they conquered an area, they often trampled crops so the land would return to grazing ground. They viewed the farmer peasants as little more than animals eating vegies and living in one area where their food was located. This was far different from the meat heavy diet of the Mongols.

All of this and more is available in the highly recommended and thoroughly captivating book "Genghis Khan and the making of the modern world." The audio book is equally captivating, and was recently on audible for $5. Currently $4 on Kindle

My horde grows wealthy. Glad to see my vassals are showing their proper respect. I will not have to resort to violence for at least another month.

u/eighthgear · 19 pointsr/badhistory

> No, I haven't listened to them. Why would I have, when I've already made my disdain for him known?

Nobody is saying "please listen to Dan Carlin."

However, I think you should listen to the podcasts if you are going to try to critique them. You know, so you don't type stuff like:

> Why does he list as sources for a podcast on Verdun and the Somme a book about the Admiralty during WWI?

When, as others have pointed out, the podcast "on Verdun and the Somme" spent quite a lot of time talking about Jutland.

Hardcore History is not academic history. It's far from it. However, regardless of my views on the podcast, I'm not going to pretend that I've listened to something and then come up with critiques of it. It's like reviewing a book that one hasn't read. I have a deep suspicion that I would dislike Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, for example, based on various things I've heard about it - but I'm not going to skim the book's bibliography and then spend my time critiquing Jack Weatherford for using various sources when I have no clue as to how he used them since I haven't actually read the thing.

I've had to write critiques of books in history classes (I'm doing one right now, as a coincidence), and just bashing sources isn't enough. You have to look at how the sources are used. If you have no interest in Carlin's stuff, fine, but don't try to come up with source-based critiques of the podcasts if you don't know how Carlin is using those sources.

u/detarame · 5 pointsr/AskHistorians

I'll throw out a recommendation for Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World.

u/geedeeit · 4 pointsr/todayilearned

No way, he was amazing. Read about him & find out.

u/GoldLegends · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

But it wasn't his intention to murder people just because he wanted to kill people. It was actually the contrary. Mongols didn't even like having blood being spilt on them due to their culture. This was how war campaigns were done by all civilization in the past. The Mongols only had a high death toll because they were more successful than any other conquerors.

If anything, Genghis Khan was a lot more merciful than any other conquerors back then. He gave cities a chance to surrender and to be considered his "kin" if they were to surrender without fighting. But I'm not saying he was a saint. He did plunder villages and impressed civilians of those that didn't surrender to the frontlines of battles. But I want to reiterate that this was how the world back then was. War was quite common. Unlike other nations, he never tortured anyone. European, Persian, and Chinese leaders would resort to terrorizing torture but Genghis Khan never allowed torture.

And fine, even during their standard the Mongols did commit horrendous things, but they did open up the East/Asia to Europe which led to the rebirth of the civilization (which we call the Renaissance). They were one of the first civilization to promote religion tolerance and the first to have it's own continental postal system. They also vastly promoted trade.Without the Mongols, Columbus would probably have never gained support from Spain to sail West to gain access to the Mongol riches of the East.

The Mongols were not evil. They were just a product of their time's constant turmoil.

Source: "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World" by Jack Weatherford

u/self-assembled · 2 pointsr/geopolitics

While not exactly geopolitical, I read a history of Genghis Khan which isn't necessarily fictionalized, but delivered with a readable narrative, in 9th grade, that left a lasting impression on me.

u/ibstrd · 1 pointr/pics

I listened to this and Jack Weatherfords book in audio. I'd say the book is more detailed and would recommend it instead.

u/gopher33j · 1 pointr/todayilearned || Great book, Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World. Read it, if this is interesting to you.

u/RedTigerGSU · 0 pointsr/evilbuildings
u/Zifnab25 · 0 pointsr/Libertarian

> Kindly link the history book, otherwise skidaddle.