- The Franks (review)
- Australian and New Zealand Association of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (Inc.)
- Volume 9, Number 2, December 1991
- p. p. 180
- View Citation
180 Short Notices fundamental matters, while still leaving room for the authors' individual interpretation of events. As a concise, well-written, and accessible alternative to Sir Frank Stenton's authoritative history in the Oxford History of England Series, this book is to be especially recommended. As a means of introducing undergraduates to the rich and important contribution made by the Anglo-Saxons to virtually every aspect of later English development, it is invaluable. Richard J.E. Dammery Monash University James, Edward, The Franks, rpt Oxford, Basil Blackwell, 1991; paper; pp. xii, 265; 25figures,47 plates; R.R.P. AUS$34.95 [distributed in Australia by Allen and Unwin]. This is a paperback reprint of the 1988 cloth edition reviewed enthusiastically in Parergon, n. s., vol. 8, no. 1 (1990) by John Moorhead. The paperback edition is a simple reprint with no conections, alterations, or emendations. For teachers of early medieval, west-European history die book is an attractive addition to the texts available for students. John H. Pryor Department of History University of Sydney Kazhdan, A.P. and Ann W. Epstein, Change in Byzantine culture in the eleventh and twelfth centuries; rpt Berkeley and Los Angeles, University of California Press, 1990; paper; pp. xxii, 287; 53 plates; R.R.P. US$12.95. This book was greeted with interest and enthusiasm on itsfirstappearance. That it is now available in paperback, at a price thatfitsit for student reading lists, should be the cause for even greater rejoicing. It offers a judicious appraisal of the structures of the Byzantine empire at the point when that society's evolution from the culture of the ancient world to that of the Middle Ages was virtually complete. The book's strengths lie in its authors' complementary interests. Alexander Kazhdan's intimate knowledge of the written sources enables him to draw on a wealth of apposite details from the whole range of surviving Byzantine texts while Ann Epstein supplements these with insights from the monuments and manuscripts of Byzantium's artistic heritage. Both varieties of evidence are probed thoughtfully, at times provocatively, and the main discussions are amply supported with a wide range of plates and an appendix of translated texts. One of the authors' main aims is to compel their readers to recognize that, despite the continuity of linguistic rhetoric, Byzantine society was far from the static monolith that its historians sought to imply. Kazhdan and Epstein's lively approach ensures that this is one mistake that no medievalist will make again. ...