12 numeros de la excelente revista National Geographic de 2013
What do the fall of Constantinople, the French Revolution, the Transcontinental Railroad, and the invention of the Internet all have in common? If any one of these turning points had not occurred, or had occurred differently, the trajectory of modern history—and even your life—would have been dramatically altered.
Each event and innovation sparked a profound change in how entire societies viewed the world while signaling the dawn of a new political, economic, or cultural and social reality. Being aware of these turning points is critically important—but it’s even more essential to comprehend the complexity of their causes and effects if you want to fully grasp how we arrived in the here and now. Only by understanding how these and other landmark moments and movements transformed our world and continue to impact it today, and by studying the creative ways humankind has found to adapt, can we get at the heart of what it truly means to be “modern.”
Turning Points in Modern History takes you on a far-reaching journey around the globe—from China to the Americas to New Zealand—to shed light on how two dozen of the top discoveries, inventions, political upheavals, and ideas since 1400 have shaped the modern world. Taught by award-winning history professor Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, these 24 thought-provoking lectures tell the amazing story of how life as we know it developed—at times advancing in one brilliant instant and at other times, in painstaking degrees.
Starting in the early 15th century and culminating in the age of social media, you’ll encounter astounding threads that weave through the centuries, joining these turning points in ways that may come as a revelation. You’ll also witness turning points with repercussions we can only speculate about because they are still very much in the process of turning.
What It Means to Be Modern
So what is meant by “modern”? As opposed to ancient or premodern, modernity involves a mindset that stresses novelty, breaks with the past, and recognizes change.
In exploring these turning points, you’ll see as the attributes of modernity and progress recur again and again, including
- the growth of technology;
- the autonomy of the individual;
- reliance on experimentation and science over the dictates of tradition;
- new concepts of popular sovereignty and equality; and
- interconnectedness on an increasingly global scale.
Professor Liulevicius doesn’t merely recount the greatest events of history, but rather has carefully selected true catalysts in provoking changes in worldview. Whether you’re covering a turning point concerning
- technological change, like the invention of the airplane, motion pictures, or the atomic bomb;
- political history, such as the establishment of sovereign nation-states; or
- social transformation, as in the abolitionist movement or the recognition of women’s right to vote,
you’ll focus on the impact the event had on its contemporaries and their hopes and fears regarding its effects. And you will see, in spite of the shock of the “new,” society’s remarkable ability to adapt.
A Unique Understanding of Our Shared Past
Some of the events presented in Turning Points in Modern History, including the discovery of the New World and the fall of the Berlin Wall, will immediately resonate as watershed moments. The global significance of other pivotal events may only become apparent through the professor’s guidance, such as the publication of the Enlightenment-era Encyclopédie and the Russo-Japanese War—which has been historically overshadowed by the two world wars that followed.
Whether the events are familiar or surprising, you’ll encounter a wealth of eye-opening insights throughout.
- The voyages of Christopher Columbus: Despite what you may have learned in school, almost no educated European thought the world was flat in Columbus’s day.
- The printing press: Gutenberg’s machine played a major role in launching the Protestant Reformation. For centuries, calls for reform within the church were slow to gain acceptance or were ignored. The printing press allowed Martin Luther’s message to spread and take hold instead of quickly evaporating.
- The American Revolution: Even by the time of the Boston Tea Party, few colonists were driving for independence. Most wanted the restoration of their rights as Englishmen.
- The theory of evolution: Many people actually speculated on evolution before Charles Darwin. After he introduced his ideas, the Nazis and others took the concept in directions he would not have endorsed.
While any one of these or the other turning points featured are fascinating enough to warrant an entire course, this unique format allows parallels and links to be made across centuries and continents. You’ll see how the building of the Berlin Wall intersects with the space race; trace how the Anglo-Dutch trade wars led to China’s subjugation; and consider whether the Westphalian system of territorial sovereignty established in 1648 still applies in cyberspace as the Internet nullifies borders.
Learn What Might Have Been
As you discover how turning points such as the discovery of penicillin and the opening of East Berlin hinged on chance, accident, and, in some cases, sheer luck, you’ll realize how easily history might have played out differently.
- When Enrico Fermi and colleagues attempted to create a nuclear chain reaction in Chicago, no one knew with certainty it wouldn’t run out of control. Had it gone awry, would their protection system—a technician with an axe and workers standing by with buckets of cadmium and salt—have been enough to prevent catastrophe?
- If an “American missile launch” inadvertently detected by a Soviet satellite hadn’t been declared a false alarm by a Russian official, how differently might the cold war have ended?
- If the voyages of “the Chinese Columbus,” Admiral Zheng He, had continued and reached the Americas, would we be speaking Mandarin today?
Having lived, studied, and traveled extensively throughout Europe, Dr. Liulevicius is uniquely qualified to draw unexpected connections between events and figures. In Turning Points in Modern History, you’ll experience humanity’s last 600 years as a sweeping narrative. By the final lecture, you’ll see the big picture come into crystal-clear focus and possess an understanding of where we are, where we’ve been, and where we’re headed like never before.
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There are billions of Internet users connected to one another, and every minute, these parties create mind-boggling amounts of new information and data. Yet because cyberspace is so vast, flexible, and unregulated (and because it grows in leaps and bounds every year), all these users are highly vulnerable to dangers from cyber criminals, rogue nation-states, and other outside forces.
Just how important an issue is cybersecurity? Consider these points:
- Every minute, individuals and organizations hack multiple websites around the world.
- Each year, experts discover millions of new pieces of malware designed to illegally tamper with computer systems.
- Yearly, cyber crime leads to astounding global monetary losses of billions and billions of dollars.
- In just a single year, millions of people will find themselves the victims of cyber identity fraud.
Public policymakers and technology experts agree: Cybersecurity and the issues associated with it will affect everyone on the planet in some way. That means the more you know about this hot-button topic, the better prepared you’ll be to protect yourself, to weigh in on the political and ethical issues involved, and to understand new threats (and new solutions) as they emerge.
Thinking about Cybersecurity: From Cyber Crime to Cyber Warfare is your guide to understanding the intricate nature of this pressing subject. Delivered by cybersecurity expert and professor Paul Rosenzweig of The George Washington University Law School, these 18 engaging lectures will open your eyes to the structure of the Internet, the unique dangers it breeds, and the ways we’re learning how to understand, manage, and reduce these dangers. Combining an expert lecturer with a fascinating topic, this course is a riveting learning experience that immerses you in the invisible world of codes, computer viruses, and digital espionage, and offers an enthralling look at the high-stakes battles of tomorrow.
Explore the Range of Cyber Threats Out There
Thinking about Cybersecurity is laid out in a clear, systematic fashion so that you never feel overwhelmed by a topic that can seem mindboggling. Professor Rosenzweig starts by giving you a solid foundation of how the Internet and cyberspace are built, why cyber systems work the way they do, and how technical experts and scientists have attempted to “map” them out.
From there, you’ll take a comprehensive look at the different types of viruses and vulnerabilities infecting the cyber domain and interfering with both technology and the real aspects of life that technology supports. You’ll explore an entire cyber arsenal of threats both large and small, including
- spiders, automated programs that crawl around the Internet and harvest personal data;
- keystroke loggers, programs that actually capture the keystrokes entered on a computer’s keyboard; and
- advanced persistent threats, which intrude into computer systems for long periods of time and make computers vulnerable to continuous monitoring.
And those are only a few. Using case studies drawn straight from contemporary headlines, Professor Rosenzweig gives you a solid grasp of who in cyberspace is using these and other weapons—individual hackers, “hacktivists,” crime syndicates, and, increasingly, large nations—and what their motivations are for doing so.
Probe Intriguing Cybersecurity Issues
While we can never completely protect cyberspace from threat, we are far from helpless. Thinking about Cybersecurity focuses on some of the high-tech methods corporations and governments are developing and using to find cyber threats, protect themselves from future attacks, track down perpetrators, and stave off the threat of all-out cyber war.
But you’ll also go deeper than that. You’ll examine the intricate law and policy issues involved in dealing with these threats.
- How do government constitutions both protect civil liberties and limit the ability of people to protect themselves?
- How should privacy be defined in a modern world where personal data can now be tracked and shared?
- Should cyber warfare follow the same rules of armed conflict that exist on the physical battlefield, or do we need to come up with new ethics and rules?
In addition, you’ll get a chance to place everything you’ve learned about cybersecurity in the context of everyday life. Professor Rosenzweig offers sensible tips on how best to protect yourself, your network, or your business from attack or data loss.
Understand, Manage, and Reduce Your Risks
Central to Thinking about Cybersecurity is Professor Rosenzweig’s expertise in this relatively new field. As a former deputy assistant secretary for policy in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, an author of noted books on cyberspace and national security, and a frequent lecturer on cybersecurity law and policy, he is the perfect guide for a journey deep into the heart of this all-important subject.
Accompanying his informative lectures are a wealth of dynamic green-screen effects, 3-D animations, and other visual tools that help you understand
- theoretical views of cyberspace,
- how information spreads around the world,
- how viruses attack computer systems, and
- how special tools and programs block those attacks.
By actually immersing you in the cyber world, the green-screen sequences in particular make learning about cybersecurity more engaging and visually accessible than anything you could find in a textbook.
Professor Rosenzweig takes care to emphasize throughout Thinking about Cybersecurity that the situation is never hopeless, despite the seriousness of cybersecurity threats and the rapidly evolving challenges they present. “Internet openness brings risks and dangers that cannot be eliminated,” he notes. “But they are risks that can be understood, managed, and reduced. By the end of this course, you’ll have a greater appreciation for what governments and individuals are doing—and can do—to reduce these risks.”
The views expressed in this course are those of the professor and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.
You can either watch them or download them. Enjoy and learn