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The Great Game (Anglais) Broché – 27 mars 2006

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

'Brilliant' (Patrick Leigh Fermor, Daily Telegraph)

'There can be few more fascinating subjects, or few authors better qualified to write about it' (Fitzroy Maclean, Independent)

'Immensely readable and magisterially detached. A gripping and impressive narrative of adventure and war' (Financial Times)

'Hopkirk's brilliant and engrossing account remains the classic text on how to handle the various and often dangerous people who inhabit the region, fill of tips and warnings for the Game's current players.' (BBC History Magazine)

'Fans of political history and adventure are in for a treat as publishing house John Murray reissues its Peter Hopkirk series' (Siân Gibson, Geographical Magazine)

Présentation de l'éditeur

For nearly a century the two most powerful nations on earth, Victorian Britain and Tsarist Russia, fought a secret war in the lonely passes and deserts of Central Asia. Those engaged in this shadowy struggle called it 'The Great Game', a phrase immortalized by Kipling. When play first began the two rival empires lay nearly 2,000 miles apart. By the end, some Russian outposts were within 20 miles of India.

This classic book tells the story of the Great Game through the exploits of the young officers, both British and Russian, who risked their lives playing it. Disguised as holy men or native horse-traders, they mapped secret passes, gathered intelligence and sought the allegiance of powerful khans. Some never returned. The violent repercussions of the Great Game are still convulsing Central Asia today.

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Format: Broché
The authors has succeed in shown a complete picture of the Great Game situation and story in Central Asia.
Spies walking round wilderness areas, risking their own life to gather intelligence, battles descirption are really interesting. Once inside, it was difficult to stop reading it ;-)
A coupe of maps with historical key cities are enclosed. Mays be some more showing precisely spies and troops movment would be welcomed.
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Format: Broché Achat vérifié
The tale of a century's meddling by Britain and Russion in central asia, including the ignomious slaughter of 16,000 British troops and camp followers in first Afghan war of 1841. Reads very like Livy's classical tales of the Roman empire: endless war...
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Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Avec ce livre on comprend l'histoire de la lutte entre la Russie et l'Angleterre au XIXe siècle avec comme terrain de conflit les régions entre l'Empire ottoman et l'Inde, et entre la Russie et l'océan indien. Hopkirk étant non seulement un bon historien mais aussi un conteur son livre est passionnant. Le seul reproche que je ferais est que parfois il est répétitif dans sa façon de raconter les aventures d'un n-ième officier anglais explorant les territoires entre le Pendjab et les khanats d'Asie centrale en mission pour le compte de la Compagnie des Indes orientales : toujours polyglotte, intrépide, se faisant passer pour mendiant, religieux ou commerçant, et mourant une fois sur deux de mort violente. Hormis cette faiblesse je recommande hautement ce livre. L'histoire de la Russie, de la Perse, de l'Empire ottoman au Moyen-Orient, de l'Afghanistan, etc. n'aura plus de secret pour vous, sera facile à comprendre et donc à retenir. En fait c'est même une excellente introduction pour comprendre la géopolitique actuelle de toute la planète et en particulier de la Russie.
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J'ai acheté l'édition brochée sur le marketplace, typographie bizarre et encombrée, difficile à déchiffrer, pour une fois j'aurais du prendre l'ebook kindle, même si l'évolution de leurs prix ces dernières années m'a renvoyé en général vers les formats papiers
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5 212 commentaires
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Sweeping and Engaging History of a Century of British and Russian Conflict over the Middle East 6 août 2016
Par Wesley Bob - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I’ve never read or studied a lot about the exploits and conflicts of the British Empire and Russian Tsars in the 19th century. But I am a fan of well written history and was intrigued by this era of conflict known as “The Great Game”. If there is a book out there that better tells the tale of the successes, failures and misadventures of the British and Russians over this century, I have a hard time imagining what it would be as Peter Hopkirk’s book by the same title is stellar. Hopkirk is a strong and accessible writer who cut his teeth as a journalist working extensively in the Middle East and then went on to write a handful of histories about noteworthy eras in that region. This book is sweeping in scale as it tells the far ranging and extensive conflict between Russia and Britain, primarily a cold war that occasionally turned hot, as they vied for influence in the areas between Russia and India. The English primarily worried about defending their profitable colony, India, from Russian conquest. The Russians were primarily interested in extending their influence south into the Middle East to expand trade and also pushing toward Constantinople and access to the Mediterranean. Hopkirk excels at veering between the very specific stories of individuals who “played the great game” and then how their actions helped shape the more strategic actions and decisions of the two governments. Hopkirk also skillfully navigates the twisting tides as changes in leadership and influence in both governments shaped The Great Game. All of the detailed exploits of the many individuals are thrilling and enthralling. The hardships that many faced; whether scorching deserts, mountainous snowy passes, or duplicitous counterparties; are inspiring and amazing in their intensity. Although told more from the British point of view, Hopkirk gives an honest reading of the actions and motivations of the English but also does so with the Russians. In addition, he shows great insight and perspective on the various natives that are equal players of the great game. There are numerous Shahs and Emirs and others that had a significant impact on The Great Game, some for the good and some for the worse. Throughout the story there are many stories of heroism and sadism that give the tales dramatic punch and Hopkirk deftly handles all of these. As I worked my way through this sweeping tale, I kept thinking about the current state of relations throughout the Middle East and about some of the recent dealings with Russia. There are numerous lessons to be gleamed from The Great Game for our current relations with many countries in the Middle East and around the world and for that matter our own perspective on American influence. I won’t take the time to detail the ones that I gleamed from the book but offer that if you embrace this book you will find a very enjoyable read but also come away from it with a better perspective on some of the issues our nation faces today.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Comprehensive, a little slanted, not an easy read 4 avril 2012
Par Dennis J. Boccippio - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Having first read Hopkirk's "Foreign Devils on the Silk Road" I can't help but rate this in comparison. For those interested in the history of this part or the world, TGG is a worthwhile read but will, I think, require some energy and commitment. Due to the complexity of the history and the number of players, this is a drier read than Foreign Devils, whose narrative benefitted from a much smaller cast of "characters" and much simpler story to tell.

Other reviewers have pointed out that it's also not an entirely unbiased telling, with a certain amount of positive flourish added to the British viewpoints rather than the Russian ones. I found the first half of the book to be fairly neutral, but it definitely drifted in tone by the end. The bias wasn't fatal but slightly distracting. Some allowances should probably be given due to the time period in which it was written, when access to Russian (or Soviet) historical source material might have been limited.

The portions of the history centered around Afghanistan's role in the Great Game were, I think, particularly interesting and valuable as they provide historical context to both Soviet and current era conflicts there that modern readers may find useful.

Overall, a book I would recommend to the interested but not one I would gush over...

Postscript: Something I should add (after reading reviews of "Tournament of Shadows", a similar history): The book would have been well served to make better use of maps; there are a couple of stylized "Tolkien-esque" maps included (which are virtually worthless in the Kindle edition), but especially for this topic (where many locations will only be familiar to experts, and where the evolution of boundaries over time was a critical factor), a full inclusion of maps into the narrative would have made a big difference.

Final nit, this was the first e-book I read in Kindle rather than iBooks format. Perhaps because of its age, there are a nontrivial number of OCR scanning errors which were not edited or corrected. Sloppy. Not enough to get in the way of understanding the content, but enough to be very irritating while reading.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Stories of daring from 19th-century central Asia 15 décembre 2013
Par J W Hutton - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
During the 19th century, Russian expansion into central Asia had the authorities in London and Calcutta worried about the safety of India, the jewel in the imperial crown. This expansion spurred surveys/intelligence-gathering missions into the remote, unmapped regions north of India where outsiders often ventured at their peril. While some of explorers succeeded and won gold medals from the Royal Geographical Society, others such as Stoddart and Conolly or Burnes met with violent ends.

The book is told from the British side in a relatively neutral tone, although the Russians tended to be duplicitous, denying everything like any good schoolboy does while being, in fact, guilty as charged; but there is also an instance of chivalry when Colonel Yanov, in true bourgeois style, is all apologies for deporting Younghusband from (alleged) Russian territory. To be fair to the Russians, the various rulers of the central Asian states were probably even more devious and untrustworthy.

It doesn't matter whether the story is told from the British or Russian side because it remains a fascinating tale of derring-do under frequently difficult circumstances. The British Empire seemed to have no end of highly talented officers who were quite happy to head off on missions from which there was a good chance they would not return.

Although the body of the book remains unchanged from its original year of publication (1990), there is a new foreword from 2006, which looks back to the failed Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, and the Anglo-American assault on the country in 2001. The Great Game, it seems, isn't over.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Addictive 29 juin 2012
Par S. B. Rembold - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Two important aspects of this book that anyone interested in buying it must bear in mind: 1) it has a strictly occidental perspective (asiatic cultures/peoples and their deeds are only mentioned), and 2) it does not hide a strong British bias (specifically as opposed to Russians), as other viewers have already mentioned. This book describes the clash of two military powers, from their own perspective (and I think that's just what Hopkirk wanted to do).

This said, it is surely one of the best books I've ever read -- and I'm not British. The narrative is very, very addictive. Spionage missions, sieges, full-scale invasions, fierce protection of strongholds and forts, crossing of snow-covered mountains or endless deserts... all the ingredients of a good historic fiction book, written in such hair-raising, simple style, that one has to make an effort to remember that all this is not a fiction! (Some viewers have found the opposite, but I simply cannot understand why.)

As for the maps, the small number of them contained in the book is enough. "Enough" does not mean that half a dozed other maps, with a detailed terrain around key regions, would not be welcome (the region of Chitral, for example). They would, but one can easily follow the main events without them.

If you want a book without these biases and with an account from central asian Muslim nations perspective, I would not recommend this one. Myself, I will certainly read other books on this subject to fill in this gap. But if you want a book on the Great Game with such a vivid narrative that you cannot help sometimes being on the verge of a heart attack, go ahead and read it.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This is a must read! 7 juin 2016
Par Mark Foster - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I will not bore you with more of the same that the other 5-star reviews have already expounded upon. Read this book! At over 560 pages, I will say it was too short. It captivates your imagination and tells an amazing story that gives great insight into the Middle East, Western and Russian colonialism, and a historical perspective of what is still going on in that region.
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