ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Books, Literature, and Writing»
  • Books & Novels

The Creators, A History of Heroes of the Imagination, by Daniel J Boorstin -- A Book Review

Updated on October 22, 2015
Photo is in the public domain
Photo is in the public domain

A long and sometimes disjointed read, but awesome content that makes it all worthwhile

4 stars for The Creators, by Daniel J Boorstin
The Creators: A History of Heroes of the Imagination
The Creators: A History of Heroes of the Imagination

The reviewed book. Awesome information on the history of human thought and imagination, but expect a long, dense read.

 

For as long as there have been humans there has been imagination. Over the centuries that imagination has morphed and developed through many different styles and has been expressed in countless ways. How did we get from cave paintings and pyramids to Picasso and skyscrapers? Author Daniel J. Boorstin strives to answer that question in his epic 750-page recounting of the journey the collective human imagination has taken since the beginnings of recorded history until now.

In what ways is the imagination expressed? According to Boorstin, it is most commonly influenced and expressed by religion, philosophy, art, architecture, and performance. Boorstin follows the beginnings of the early religious practices and philosophical beliefs around the world, and then shows how these began mutating and influencing the other arenas of expression.

This is a truly fascinating collection of information. The most obvious value of this book is its use as a road map for further learning, as each item of discussion is only a bare outline of actual people and events. People’s lives come into the picture only in the ways they influenced the imaginative timeline, inventions are only explained enough to show how they evolved from previous ways of thinking, and so on. However, through this outline it is very possible to find endless threads of continuing study in areas of interest.

People who have a true love of learning will likely be completely enthralled by this book as any reader will come out of it having learned a great deal. The writing style is surprisingly very plain and easy to read without bogging down anywhere. It is very rare that someone can read a 750-page and not only not be tired of it by time it’s done, but wish there was still more to read. The only possible area for confusion is that the book is not arranged chronologically, but rather organized according to lines of influence. For instance, a chapter on performing arts will follow acting from the huge community events of old to the star-centered film productions of today, then the following chapter may plunge the reader back into the Dark Ages for another form of influence or expression.

The book could have used a little bit of additional editing as there were quite a number of typos, including some incorrect dates. Luckily, all of the dates that were noticed were very clearly incorrect as they showed a person’s life or reign ending before it began (i.e., a reign printed as being from 1633-1628).

Anyone seeking a liberal arts degree may find it worthwhile to read this book in order to get a big-picture view of how the world became what it is today. However, having no other reason to read it but pure enjoyment and self-education will still make it an extremely rewarding read. Overall, this is one of the best works of general knowledge yet encountered by this reviewer. The book was certainly very enlightening and educational, and may leave on wanting to look up some of the other books by this author. Boorstin has also written books following inventors, explorers, early colonial America, and more. This is an exceptional one-time read, or a useful reference book to keep on hand for repeated use.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)