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The Cartoon History of the Universe III: From the Rise of Arabia to the Renaissance (Cartoon History of the Universe book III; vol. 14-19)

4.27  ·  Rating Details ·  1,134 Ratings  ·  65 Reviews
An irreverent survey in comics spanning world history from the birth of Islam to the Byzantine Empire to the Italian Renaissance.

Larry Gonick's celebrated series The Cartoon History of the Universe is a unique fusion of world history and the comics medium, a work of serious scholarship and a masterpiece of popular literature. Praised by historians as a narrative and inter

Paperback, 320 pages
Published October 17th 2002 by W. W. Norton & Company
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,827)
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Indah Threez Lestari
#Program BUBU

Pertama kali dibeli dan dibaca pada bulan November 2006.


Setali tiga uang dengan Jilid I dan II-nya. I love it!

Memang dalam sejarah peradaban Islam, ada beberapa penuturan Larry Gonnick yang membuat teman2 yang fanatik jadi marah. But again, open your mind-lah. Ini cuma sejarah dari sudut pandang Larry Gonnick.

Lagipula, overall Gonnick menghormati Islam, misalnya dengan tidak menggambarkan sosok Rasulullah SAW, meskipun dia ngedu
May 28, 2016 Choonghwan rated it it was amazing
One of the most comprehensive and balanced history book I have ever read.
History is, more often than not, full of eventualities and incidents in loose and dizzying array. It is driven by fear and lust, envy and pride, ignorance and prejudice; yet often recorded with reason and purpose in mind.

Thus it is written and rewritten, remains nostalgic as ever, is open to arguments forever. We live history and our memory survive history.
Pandu K. Utomo
Nov 02, 2007 Pandu K. Utomo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: histories
Dengan empat bintang ini maka lengkap sudah aku memberi rating pada 3 jilid Kartun Riwayat Peradaban. Ketiga jilid buku ini memang termasuk koleksi favoritku. Buku-buku yang berharga dan patut dibaca berulang-ulang.

Jilid ketiga ini, kelanjutan dari dua jilid sebelumnya, menurutku yang paling menarik. Dari lahirnya Islam & bangkitnya Arab, peradaban Afrika dan Asia Tengah, kemunduran Eropa, perang salib, dan bangkitnya Eropa melalui Renaisans, kurang lebih memakan waktu 1000 tahun. Masa yang
Sep 15, 2007 Joe rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Historians
Recommended by Goodreader and closet Freemason Megan K., this third installment of Larry Gonick's brilliant series chiefly concerns the Middle Ages, albeit a Middle Ages seldom visited. While giving the Crusades its proper due, Gonick sheds fascinating light on the rise of Islam, (Sunnis, Shia, and Beyond!), and the rarely taught sub-Saharan African civilizations. Only the most hard-hearted cultural Philistine would not be gripped by this hilarious, illuminating, and at times shocking survey of ...more
Anson Bridges
Nov 04, 2014 Anson Bridges rated it it was amazing
The Cartoon History of the Universe III by Larry Gonick is a book doing pretty much what it says in the title; explaining history in the form of comics.
Since it is a nonfiction book, the characters are all real, except for the narrator guy with crazy hair, who adds a little more interesting elements to the story. The there is no one plot and conflict, as it covers many parts of history from the rise of Arabia to the holy wars.
As for the characters, the main character had no conflicts, he was
Sep 10, 2016 Dan rated it it was amazing
Looking for an accessible, one volume history that intelligently presents the rise of Islam, the oft-neglected history of Africa, the difference between a Sunni and a Shi'ite, the rise of China? Here it is! Discover the origin story of many conflicts still making headlines (as well as many of the storylines and inspirations for the "Song of Ice and Fire" (aka Game of Thrones)). Excellent bibliography for those who want to explore further.
Dec 18, 2014 Aneesh rated it it was amazing
What I said about the past two volumes also holds true for this one.

This volume covers a period of history (from the rise of Islam to the European renaissance) which I wasn't familiar with.

I was tempted to dock one star for Gonick's refusal to draw Mohammed. I relented. Given that there exist sufficiently many people in the world who desire to kill him if he did so, and some of whom are capable of and willing to act on this desire, thus posing a risk to his continued existence if he did so, I ca
Hard to fit all that history into one or a few sittings, but the author is great about offering references within the text so you can go back to page (insert number here) so you can refresh. Although some of the material is now outdated (no pun intended), it's still fairly accurate, and the bits that are no longer so might go unnoticed by the casual reader who hasn't been following PBS or academic journal articles. After stumbling across this volume, I am now actively seeking the preceding two a ...more
Lisa Feld
Jan 16, 2015 Lisa Feld rated it it was amazing
Shelves: colorado
This is the volume where Gonick really earns his stripes as a cartoonist and historian. The volume starts off with a great chapter on the rise of Islam: engaging, easy to follow, and carefully avoiding pictures of Mohammed--no easy feat! The rest of the volume shows the development of societies all around the globe, from China and Japan to England to the Ottoman Empire, but unlike the previous volume, where each society had to be siloed, here Gonick keeps shifting between each of these societies ...more
May 16, 2010 Reenie rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, comic
Once again, Larry Gonick combines a pretty awesome amalgam of historical scholarship - both the big picture and some hilarious little details - with great pictographical storytelling. This feels fairly comprehensive, although it's more of a Cook's Tour of things going on in the Old World between around 400 and around 1500, by the necessities of space. Gonick finds space to talk about the kingdoms of Nothern and Western africa, which is more than most of the world history courses I had ever got r ...more
Euisry Noor
Jul 23, 2008 Euisry Noor rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone
Larry Gonick emang layak diacungi jempol. Di tangan kartunis nyentrik yang satu ini, sejarah disulap menjadi komik lucu yang tidak membosankan. Kita bisa membaca sejarah dengan enjoy lewat Kartun Riwayat Peradabannya ini. Di jilid 3 ini diceritakan mulai dari bangkitnya bangsa Arab hingga masa renaissance di Eropa. Lumayan, mencoba mereview kembali apa yang didapat saat sekolah dalam pelajaran SKI (Sejarah Kebudayaan Islam). Tapi... cara tutur Gonick tentu saja sangat lain. Salah satu yang menar ...more
Paul Schulzetenberg
Mar 28, 2010 Paul Schulzetenberg rated it really liked it
Gonick has achieved something special with this book. He's managed to make history accessible without trivializing it. Gonick has to walk a fine line with comics, as of course it will be that much easier to dismiss the book as so much fluff. Remarkably, he succeeds. The book admirably takes advantage of comics' ability to succinctly communicate, but still avoiding flat characterizations or stale style.

What's even more admirable is how Gonick manages to combine an out-of-vogue genre (Westernized
Anita Williamson
Mar 05, 2015 Anita Williamson rated it liked it
The cartoons are funny and I have delved into African history much more than I ever really cared to. The most interesting parts were the history of Western Civilization. I don't care for the political snippets that he intersperses throughout the book. Also he listed a few items as fact when they actually were not.
Jun 26, 2010 Christopher rated it it was amazing
I love the Cartoon History from when I got the first volume for Christmas as a kid and ignored all my family until I finished it that night.

Volume 3 is centered around the Dark and Middle Ages for those of us who got a classical Euro-centric education. All the gaps that perplexed me as a kid are here (where did the Mongols come from - they just sprouted from the steppes of Asia like grass?, If China had all these cool inventions first how come they're not in charge by now? Why did the Spanish fi
Lincoln Wert
Sep 21, 2015 Lincoln Wert rated it liked it
This series is so fun! My only quibble is that he left out the Americas, I understand the next in the series starts with the Central America/Mexico history but only as it pertains to Portugal and Spain. I have to assume this is because of lack of written records.

We'll see.
Sep 05, 2007 Gphatty rated it it was amazing
When this book came out, I was so surprised to see it. Gonick continued his review of history, picking up with the Byzantines, but more importantly, covering the rise of Islam, and early Arabic and African histories. Like Vol. II, this book gave me a good basic understanding at the events that shaped Islamic consciousness, and as the blurbs on the outside remind you, how those events reverberate today. More importantly, Gonick contrasts these histories with how my own, Western Civ background, in ...more
Mar 16, 2016 Pinko rated it it was ok
unlike the first and second parts, this one is drawn in a more realistic style, which doesn't work so well. Plus, he is less irreverent and iconoclastic than he started out as
Daniel Deller
Jul 16, 2013 Daniel Deller rated it really liked it
The author does a great job of picking out good anecdotal details, and illustrating them in a funny way. Also, he has a view of history which is about gradual development and the actions of individuals having consequence, and is able to demonstrate this with many examples. Excellent. Does not get 5 stars, because I am not entirely sure it is all factual. He makes a statement about the Korean origins of the Japanese imperial line which I found suspect, reading like something that a chauvinist Kor ...more
Ariel Seraphino
Sejarah dunia adalah sejarah panjang tentang penindasan dan perebutan kekuasaaan. Menariknya, buku ini menawarkan semua kisah seram, menakutkan, berdarah dan penuh intrik kekejaman dengan cara yang paling sederhana, komik dan humor. celetukan-celetukan para tokoh yang sejatinya mungkin jahat, keji terlihat menjadi konyol. Sebuah cara baru dalam memandang sejarah dunia dan peradaban yang lahir.
Nov 26, 2011 Judith rated it really liked it
The Cartoon History of the Universe, III: From the Rise of Arabia to the Renaissance by Larry Gonick continues with our cute little professor and his time machine, which runs on old library books, and takes us back to Mecca in the “year of the elephant.” The year that the Christian general's elephant fell to its knees rather than lead the charge into Mecca, and fled with its masters, was the year that the prophet Muhammad was born. Following the Mongols, Chinese, Turks, Muslim, Christian and oth ...more
May 29, 2009 Peter rated it liked it
See my review of Part 1. This one's a bit more fragmented, but so was history at that point.

The only real beef I have is that, after poking fun at every conceivable part of Greco-Roman paganism, Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Confucianism, etc. Gonick refuses to draw Muhammad. I understand the need for cultural sensitivity, but we should be on a level playing field here. I doubt Christians or Jews would have been fond of his portrayals of their prophets and adherents, and at
Nov 06, 2008 Isaac rated it really liked it
This volume in the series is particularly good in that it gives me, the lazy Western comic book reader, a feel for the significance of Islamic culture in history. Kurt Vonnegut pointed out that we have them to thank for our modern digits 1 through 9 ("try doing algebra with roman numerals"), and Gonick points out that we owe them a lot more than that. Namely, the preservation of Philosophy, Mathematics and Architecture (all CAPS) that our ignorant white asses were on the verge of forgetting for ...more
Afref Fetter Fetter
Jun 20, 2015 Afref Fetter Fetter rated it it was amazing
Larry Gonick does history like only he can. This book focuses on the middle ages, covering the rise of Islam and the Arabs, taking you on a journey with Turks, Mongols and others while the French knights suffer defeat after defeat. Covers India briefly. Focuses primarily on the Byzantine empire, Constantinople and the power struggle thus created. Ends with Columbus getting funds to start his journey westward for Spain.

Recommended for anyone with an interest in history (and a dislike of history t
Adih Respati
The comic almost-version of Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. MIT's Mathematican Gonick tells all: From Big Bang, evolution, religion, modern civilization. For newbies, this is introduction. Those familiar with the subjects will find Gonick's sense of humor is deeply symbollic and accurate.

If you notice, no english edition of this book available at any local bookstore. That said something about Gramedia's distribution policy.
Dion Yulianto
Belajar sejarah dengan cara yang sama sekali baru, melalui komik dan anekdot-anekdot lucu. Sayangnya, bias penulis sebagai bangsa Barat masih terasa kental sekali dalam buku ini walaupun unsur objektivitas tetap coba dipertahankan. Sebagaimana kata pepatah, "Sejarah dituliskan oleh pihak yang menang" ... tapi, bukunya benar2 lucu dan menyenangkan. balajar riwayat sejarah belum pernah seasyik membaca buku ini!
Nov 11, 2007 Laksmi rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: history lover, secular
larry gonick is kinda genious i think!

not because he graduated from Harvard with summa cum laude or got special prize from phi beta kappa or Gain his Phd in mathematics but then work as a comic writer ehmm...not just because of that, but because he can made comic that compile all history around the world with cynical and sceptical style but funny and fun to read.

Jim Berkin
Jul 23, 2012 Jim Berkin rated it it was amazing
Gonick's world history via comics remains the definitive textbook on the subject. This third volume covers the influence of the Byzantines on Medieval Europe & the development of the Islamic world better than any history text I've seen, and it (and its companion volumes) are indispensable for any middle/high school history class.
Nathan Carter
May 08, 2008 Nathan Carter rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, history
as with the cartoon history of the universe I & II, this is an amazing history book, straight forward, thoughtful, and (thank god) unlike the history books used to "educate" me in school. doesn't seem like propaganda like all the rest of the history books! actually informative! not christian centric/biased!
Hope Golden
Jul 01, 2013 Hope Golden rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
This book was very entertaining and engaging. I learned quite a bit of history from this book. Though it does not go into too much detail it is otherwise very thorough for a history comic book. It provides lots of sources for those who would like to go more into depth with the history covered in this book.
Nov 29, 2007 Aliendheasja rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I think this is the best book from the trilogy of Cartoon History of the Universe.
Not only that Gonick has told cool stories about the begining of Islam, but also it has built a different opinion on Black people from Africa.
It also says about lots of shocking facts about world religions.
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Larry Gonick (born 1946) is a cartoonist best known for The Cartoon History of the Universe, a history of the world in comic book form, which he has been publishing in installments since 1977. He has also written The Cartoon History of the United States, and he has adapted the format for a series of co-written guidebooks on other subjects, beginning with The Cartoon Guide to Genetics in 1983. The ...more
More about Larry Gonick...

Other Books in the Series

Cartoon History of the Universe (3 books)
  • Cartoon History of the Universe I, Vol. 1-7: From the Big Bang to Alexander the Great
  • Cartoon History of the Universe II, Vol. 8-13: From the Springtime of China to the Fall of Rome

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