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How would you order the Civ 5 civilizations in their historical importance order?

Discussion in 'World History' started by Genghis Khaiser, Dec 19, 2013.

  1. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Super Moderator

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    You know, Jesus is pretty much the one biblical character who we can be sure didn't write any of the Bible.

    Still, I'd have thought the claim about Shakespeare is likely to be pretty close. I don't know where the Squeedo information comes from, but all the books listed are in copyright (if you assume that the Bible is read in a modern translation, which I should think it is, in most countries). Shakespeare is not in copyright and is therefore much more freely available. Plus of course he's taught in schools.
     
  2. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Nobody's questioning that England has a substantial and admirable literary tradition. (One which, despite my bare-toothed Fenianism, I assure you I carry no prejudices against.) I'm just not sure how we make the leap from "Tolkien and Rowling are popular" to "England #1".
     
  3. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Because the Brits have had countless influential writers, not just Tolken and Rowling.
     
  4. Bulldog Bats

    Bulldog Bats King

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    Cake - I don't know about that. They have had more influence because of the amount of time, but if you just take the same period, the US has lots of influencial/known authors from all genres (Poe, Hemmingway, Steinbeck and on and on). I think it is a matter of personal choice - Hemingway bores me to tears, but I can't say he not one of the giants.
     
  5. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Why does having more time make it 'not count'?
     
  6. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    But you could say the same thing about France or Germany. What sets England (or Britain, or the British Isles, I'm losing track a bit) so firmly ahead of the pack?
     
  7. Bulldog Bats

    Bulldog Bats King

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    Just trying to keep some balance, especially based upon the topic of this string (from which we've veered way off, but what else is new?). Otherwise, you are not going on literary merit, but rather how many volumes have been published. One could say the Greeks were the most influencial because of all the classical texts, but unless you are a scholar of math, or Greek theater, you probably haven't read much of their books since college, if then.

    Again, I think it is all very much personal. Outside of being required to read it in high school English class, I doubt very many teens, or adults, would ever pick up Shakespeare. Based upon that, it is fair to say that this "influential" playwright has almost no influence today. Both Rowling and Tolkien have more influence today.
     
  8. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    I'm not sure if Tolkien actually has much influence outside of fantasy, to be honest, and given that Rowling's audience is primarily young adult, I don't know if she can be said to have had much influence yet.
     
  9. schlaufuchs

    schlaufuchs La Femme Moderne

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    Well, aside from the popularization of the YA and PYA genres.
     
  10. Bulldog Bats

    Bulldog Bats King

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    I don't know about that - you see the influence of both of them everywhere, even courses on many college campuses. Sure, they are pop, but in his time, so were Shakespeare and Dickens - even the Greek tragedies were intended to be performed for the masses - not read as "classics".

    The only thing that gives an author/playwright true significance IS time. Such was my original point.
     
  11. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    I wouldn't think of that as actual literary influence, though, or at least not a really substantial one. It's a commercial and cultural trend, which while hardly insignificant, doesn't really register on any "civilisational" scale.
     
  12. Bulldog Bats

    Bulldog Bats King

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    How do you define that? I would argue that if it affects a person's life and decisions, then it is more important and influential than if some scholar somewhere claims it is important.

    Again, back in his time, Shakespeare was basically the equivalent of George Lucas or Walt Disney. Midsummer Might Dream was basically a fantasy. Back then he was not considered an especially weighty person in terms of influence. Only time, and being quoted repeatedly gives those works weight/influence.

    Who is to say that in time we won't be treating Tolkien the same way?
     
  13. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Shakespeare is a much better writer than Tolkien, and I think Tolkien would probably be the first person to tell you as much.
     
  14. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    <ncm>
     
  15. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Can you please stop telling what my opinions are? You keep doing that, and it's weirding me out.
     
  16. Domen

    Domen Misico dux Vandalorum

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    The British isles? But wasn't Tolkien born in South Africa ???

    As for the popularity of English-language books.

    I suppose that the language barrier (or rather lack of such) plays an important role.

    =============================

    Edit:

    Ah... Lol, I almost forgot! :) British isles are in South Africa! Neighbouring Poland to the north.
     
  17. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Birthplace =/= nationality.
     
  18. Masada

    Masada Koi-san!

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    I'm not quite sure how accurate that is as a statement. Shakespeare's audience included Men of Standing. In his case, I guess, elite tastes weren't that far divorced from those of the masses. And Dickens was widely recognized in his lifetime as being a Good Writer by the literary establishment even if his chosen medium - installments - allowed him to access a mass audience. I guess, the point I'm trying to make is that literary fiction as a distinct genre did not exist until quite recently so it's not a meaningful way of categorizing works. If only because most works were intended for a broad audience especially in English. French was a little different because of how their literature was published and disseminated; more salons, narrower bases but still popular for all that. Whereas English novels tended to be published in serial form in newspapers that were broadly accessible. (I'm generalizing to hell but...).

    I don't think that's an accurate characterization. Sure, Shakespeare liked the dramatic, fantastic and down-right weird. But then so did just about everyone. Spencer's The Faerie Queene is the best example because Elizabeth I loved it. And it wasn't unique. There was a fascination with this kind of stuff around the period.
     
  19. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Tolkien was born in South Africa and moved to the UK as a small child. I would know, I wrote a paper on him my senior year of high school.
     
  20. Wrymouth3

    Wrymouth3 Emperor

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    Then one is to assume you are very much aware of his essays, literary criticism, semiotics, and fantasy writings? He did more than Lord of the Rings universe.
     

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