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Discover the bizarre world of medieval witch trials or the intricate codes of manners at the Georgian dinner table with the Folio Society’s collection of social history books. With beautiful illustrations or carefully researched photographs these titles are the perfect guide for any reader with an interest in how society has developed across the world. See below for the full list of Folio Social History books.

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History of Western Philosophy book

History of Western Philosophy

Bertrand Russell

This essential introduction to philosophy is engaging, entertaining and filled with Russell’s passion for the subject.

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Manhattan '45 book

Manhattan '45

Jan Morris

Jan Morris’s exuberant and witty love letter to the Manhattan of 1945 effortlessly evokes a time when it was ‘the most hopeful city on earth’.

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The Age of Gold: The California Gold Rush and the New American Dream book

The Age of Gold: The California Gold Rush and the New American Dream

H. W. Brands

Utilising the stories of the men and women caught up in a period of extraordinary change, H. W. Brands has created an epic portrait of the Gold Rush, illustrated in this edition with rare contemporary photography.

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The Age of Illusion book

The Age of Illusion

Ronald Blythe

Britain between the wars is brilliantly and entertainingly chronicled in this book by the author of Akenfield.

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The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science book

The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

Richard Holmes

Richard Holmes presents an entertaining study of the extraordinary figures that changed the face of science.

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Behind the Wall book

Behind the Wall

Colin Thubron

A vivid portrait of a post-Mao China, from one of the great travel writers.

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The Discovery of Tahiti book

The Discovery of Tahiti

George Robertson

A vivid and lively account of the HMS Dolphin’s visit to Tahiti, featuring exquisite wood engravings by Robert Gibbings.

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The Dynasties of China book

The Dynasties of China

Bamber Gascoigne

Bamber Gascoigne leads us on an exhilarating journey spanning three and a half millennia of Chinese imperial civilisation.

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The Elizabethan Age book

The Elizabethan Age

A. L. Rowse

Often called the golden age of English culture, the Elizabethan age saw an unprecedented explosion of creativity in the arts and commerce. In this rich portrait of the time, Rowse examines English society under Elizabeth and the lasting influence of the era, still resonating today.

Out of print Price: US$ 299.95

From Dawn to Decadence: 500 Years of Western Cultural Life book

From Dawn to Decadence: 500 Years of Western Cultural Life

Jacques Barzun

The first illustrated edition of Barzun's synoptic journey through the history of Western thought, from the Reformation to the dawning ‘decadence’ of the 21Ž—st century.

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The Pillow Book of Sei Shōnagon book

The Pillow Book of Sei Shōnagon

Sei Shōnagon

The revelatory personal writings of a lady at the court of Empress Sadako, luxuriously illustrated with watercolour paintings.

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The Rise and Fall of the House of Medici book

The Rise and Fall of the House of Medici

Christopher Hibbert

The story of Italy’s first family is one of political cunning, artistic genius, infidelity, execution and revenge. With sumptuous colour illustrations.

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Shackleton’s Boat Journey book

Shackleton’s Boat Journey

Frank Worsley

A story of tremendous courage and endurance, related first-hand by one of its survivors.

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Sowing the Wind: The Seeds of Conflict in the Middle East book

Sowing the Wind: The Seeds of Conflict in the Middle East

John Keay

Troubling, fascinating and accessible, this is an outstanding account of how the Middle East was shaped by Western interests. This edition features contemporary photographs and a new foreword by one of today’s most respected journalists.

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The Spanish Civil War book

The Spanish Civil War

Hugh Thomas

The definitive account of a tragic conflict, with more than 100 carefully selected images.

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