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About the book
  • Published: 18 June 2018
  • ISBN: 9780141987934
  • Imprint: Penguin Press
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $24.99


The Six Killer Apps of Western Power

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How the West's six 'killer apps' transformed the history of the world

Winner of the Estoril Global Issues Distinguished Book Prize 2013

If in the year 1411 you had been able to circumnavigate the globe and compare the dazzling civilizations of the Orient with Europe and North America, the idea that the West would dominate the Rest for most of the next half millennium would have struck you as wildly fanciful. So how did it happen?

The answer, Ferguson argues, was the West's development of six 'killer applications': competition, science, property, medicine, consumerism and the work ethic. But has the West now lost its monopoly on these six things? If so, are we living through the end of Western ascendancy?

  • Pub date: 18 June 2018
  • ISBN: 9780141987934
  • Imprint: Penguin Press
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $24.99

About the Author

Niall Ferguson

Niall Ferguson is one of Britain's most renowned historians. He is a Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University, a Senior Research Fellow of Jesus College, Oxford University, and a Senior Fellow of the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. The bestselling author of Paper and Iron, The House of Rothschild, The Pity of War, The Cash Nexus, Empire and Colossus, he also writes regularly for newspapers and magazines all over the world. Since 2003 he has written and presented three highly successful television documentary series for Channel Four: Empire, American Colossus and, most recently, The War of the World. He, his wife and three children divide their time between the United Kingdom and the United States.

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Praise for Civilization

“Brilliantly written, full of wit and virtuosity, stuffed with memorable lines and gorgeous bits of information. A great read”

The Times

“A dazzling history of Western ideas . . . epic”


“Vivid and fascinating”


“Superb . . . brings history alive . . . dazzling”


“This is sharp. It feels urgent. Ferguson . . . twists his knife with great literary brio”

Andrew Marr, Financial Times

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