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  • Published: 13 June 2023
  • ISBN: 9781847926623
  • Imprint: Bodley Head
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $39.99

Homelands

A Personal History of Europe




Drawing on fifty years of interviews and experience, Homelands tells the epic story of how Europe in the early twenty first century, having emerged from its wartime hell, recovered and rebuilt, liberated and united to come close to the ideal of a Europe 'whole, free and at peace', and then faltered.

Homelands is a stunning blend of contemporary history, reportage and memoir by our greatest writer about European affairs.

Drawing on half a century of interviews and experience, Homelands tells the story of Europe in the later twentieth and early twenty-first centuries - how, having emerged from its wartime hell in 1945, it slowly recovered and rebuilt, liberated and united to come close to the ideal of a Europe 'whole, free and at peace'. And then faltered.

Humane, expert and deeply felt, Homelands is full of encounters, conversations and anecdote. It is also highly personal: Timothy Garton Ash has spent a lifetime studying and thinking about Europe and this book is full of life itself, from his father's experience on D-Day, to his teenage French exchange, to interviewing Polish dockers, Albanian guerillas and angry teenagers in the poorest quarters of Paris, as well as advising prime ministers, chancellors and presidents in the UK, Europe, and the US.

Homelands is both a singular history of a period of unprecedented progress and a clear-eyed account of how so much then went wrong, all the way from the financial crisis of 2008 to the war in Ukraine. It culminates in an urgent call to the citizens of this great old continent to understand and defend what we have collectively achieved.


Timothy Garton Ash was 17 when Britain joined the European Community and 64 when Britain left it. In the intervening years he has lived and breathed European politics, witnessing some of the most dramatic scenes in its history, interviewing many of its key players and analysing how life has evolved for ordinary Europeans across the breadth of the continent.

He is Professor of European Studies at the University of Oxford and a columnist for the Guardian. He has won many prizes and plaudits for his journalism and books, including The File, his riveting autobiographical account of investigating the contents of his Stasi file after the fall of East Germany.

  • Published: 13 June 2023
  • ISBN: 9781847926623
  • Imprint: Bodley Head
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 352
  • RRP: $39.99

About the author

Timothy Ash Garton

Timothy Garton Ash is a Fellow of St Antony's College, Oxford. He is the author of 'Und willst du nicht mein Bruder sein'. Die DDR heute, a book published in West Germany about was was still then East germany; The Polish Revolution: Solidarity, which won the Somerset Maugham Award; The Uses of Adversity: Essays on the Fate of Central Eutrope, which gaine him the Prix Europeen de l'Essai; and, most recently, We the People: the Revolution of '89 witnessed in Warsaw, Berlin, Budapest & Prague which has now appeared in fourteen languages.

Praise for Homelands

We know there are Germans, Italians, Spaniards and Poles - but are there Europeans? Yes, at least one: Timothy Garton Ash. Homelands is the brilliant, captivating story of how he became one.

Mark Lilla, author of The Once and Future Liberal

This book, from a man who had a front-row seat to much of the history he describes, draws on his experiences and those of his friends to bring events to vivid life

M. E. Sarotte, author of Not One Inch

Garton Ash deftly combines scholarship, journalistic experience, and personal observations and stories in Homelands ... delightful and thought-provoking

Robert B. Zoellick, author of America in the World

Garton Ash has carved out a unique niche as a 'historian of the present.' Homelands combines his eye-witness account of Europe's evolution with his keen historical insight to offer an innovative and compelling book

Charles A. Kupchan, author of Isolationism

Timothy Garton Ash tells the epic story of ... [postwar] Europe

Irish Times

The right book for Europe, at the right time ... the perfect book for the present

Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny

A moving love letter to Europe, Homelands merges memoir, political analysis and social criticism to reflect on the future of a continent still haunted by its past

Lea Ypi, author of Free

Personal memories matter in Europe, where the remembrance of recent horrors has shaped modern politics ... Homelands is a trip down memory lane on a continental scale ... insightful [and] downright chilling, too

Economist

Readers could hardly wish for a wiser guide. Over 40 years, Garton Ash has both watched from the stands and played on the pitch in the arena of European change

Financial Times

Garton Ash does it brilliantly ... tremendously enjoyable ... thoughtful, honest, open, self-deprecating

Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times

Insightful

Irish Independent

A fluent and authoritative account of Europe since the Second World War

Literary Review

An authoritative big picture well matched with revealing, important human details

The Tablet

Garton Ash is a clear-headed chronicler of the Continent [and] Homelands is an engaging read

Irish Times

Rich with originality and memoiristic detail

New Statesman

An insightful analysis of the transformation of central and eastern Europe in the decades between the Hungarian revolution of 1956 and the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Guardian

At once accessible, engaging and erudite, Homelands is an extraordinary accomplishment, much like the author's life; it is a heartfelt call to arms

Times Literary Supplement

Outstanding ... Homelands is an elegantly written piece of contemporary history by one of Britain's leading public intellectuals

Spectator

Excellent ... Read as a letter, such gemlike vignettes can be treasured. Because in them, Garton Ash has captured something of what it means to be European. Though he is proudly in love with Europe, he is not blind to its faults

Washington Examiner

A panoramic contemporary history of Europe, in which sharp political analysis is enlivened with personal memoir - drawn from decades of distinguished work as a journalist and academic

FT Summer Book of 2023

Part memoir, part history and is fascinating, rich in anecdote, and at times intensely moving

The Times, *Summer Reads of 2023*

A panoramic contemporary history of Europe, in which sharp political analysis is enlivened with personal memoir — drawn from decades of distinguished work as a journalist and academic

Financial Times, *Books of the Year*