Laura Hassan, editorial director, has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights in Walls: A History of Civilization by David Frye from Scribner. Faber & Faber will publish 4 October 2018.
Frye’s brisk, colourful narrative of invasions, empires, kings, and khans reveals that the history of walls is more than a tale of bricks and stone; it is the story of civilization – our civilization – who we are and how we came to be.
The book ‘turns 5,000 years of history outside in’. Frye takes us from Mesopotamia, Babylon, Greece, China, and Rome to the Berlin Wall and the gated communities of today, charting the tension between the walled and unwalled. He offers the striking thesis that walls aren’t just a precondition for civilization but profoundly shape the human psyche.
Laura Hassan said: ‘This is such a smart, beguiling angle on the history of civilization and I was immediately struck by Frye’s animated storytelling. It is a hugely engaging history book that has implications for our present as well as our past’.
David Frye said: “The siblings of Hadrian’s wall are found around the world – in China, Iraq, Bolivia, and dozens of other countries. As recent events compel us to reexamine acts of wall building both ancient and modern, I am thrilled to be working with Faber & Faber and Laura Hassan to bring this important story to the UK. I could not ask for better partners.”
David Frye is a professor and historian whose research has taken him around the world – and involved him in numerous archaeological digs – since receiving his PhD from Duke University. He has published extensively in international academic journals, and lives in Connecticut. Follow him on @TheHistoryFeed