Are there any reverse-chronological histories of culture?
December 18, 2007 5:24 PM   Subscribe

Are there any reverse-chronological histories of culture?

What I'm envisioning are books or long-ish essays that lay out the current situations/trends/tendencies/scenes in (possibly some specific area of) music or art or literature and then backtrack, discussing the influences/predecessors of what's current, then the influences of the influences, and so on. Anything like this exist?
posted by electric water kettle to Writing & Language (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't think it exactly what you're after, but I'd bet the Connections series' will interest you.
posted by blaneyphoto at 5:28 PM on December 18, 2007

Best answer: Norman Davies's Heart Of Europe is just such a book. It was published in 1984, and is intended as a "brief" companion to God's Playground for a world audience interested in the Solidarity movement and recently-declared martial law. From the preface:
Heart of Europe: A Short History Of Poland makes no pretense of presenting a full and balanced survey of Polish affairs over the last thousand years. Although each chapter contains a brief chronological narrative, the emphasis has been firmly placed on those elements of Poland's Past which have had the greatest impact on present attitudes. ... For similar reasons, the main chapters have been written in reverse chronological order. ... In this way, the narrative leads from the more familiar to the less familiar.
posted by migurski at 9:55 PM on December 18, 2007

Response by poster: The Koran: A Very Short Introduction
posted by electric water kettle at 7:29 AM on January 26, 2008

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