The Decisive Battles of World History

Course No. 8140
Professor Gregory S. Aldrete, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin, Green Bay
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Course No. 8140
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What Will You Learn?

  • Follow the tactics of the Egyptian and Hittite armies during an epic battle that led to an unprecedented time of peace.
  • Dig into the militaristic society of the Mongols and follow their 1260 clash with Egyptian Mamluks.
  • Discover how North America took shape during the Seven Years War - specifically during a battle in 1759 in Quebec City.
  • Learn how battle technologies evolved, and discover how - in a matter of moments - power can shift during a conflict.

Course Overview

Nothing changes the world as quickly and inexorably as war. In warfare, the future course of entire civilizations, regions, and continents can be determined in as little as a few hours.

Throughout history, specific individual battles have turned the tide of historical events, triggering changes that have given us the world we know:

  • The 7th-century battle of Badr transformed the prophet Mohammad into a major political force, establishing Islam firmly as a legitimate religion that could not be suppressed.
  • The 1066 Battle of Hastings impacted world history by creating a new fusion of peoples and cultures in England and orienting the country permanently toward Europe.
  • The 1759 Battle of Quebec determined the future of North America, shifting power such that the English language and British culture would predominate.

In addition to causing changes on a global scale, military engagements have often produced monumental effects within individual cultures:

  • The outcome of the 4th-century battle of the Frigidus River established Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire.
  • The 16th-century battles of Panipat established Mughal domination over the Indian subcontinent that would last for centuries.
  • In 1836, a battle that lasted a mere 18 minutes resulted in the U.S. acquisition of nearly one-third of its continental land mass.

In these battles and many others, if it were not for the particular outcome that transpired, history might have turned out very differently. As such, looking closely at military engagements provides a vital key to historical causation—showing us how and why events unfolded and civilizations developed as they have.

A penetrating look at military conflicts also acts as a corrective, allowing for a more accurate view of major events and the forces underlying them. As a case in point, the Battle of Waterloo is commonly thought of as the downfall of Napoleon; yet his losses at the earlier Battle of Leipzig unquestionably doomed his ambitions and were the true marker and determinant of his fall. Similarly, a 1939 battle in Mongolia that is all but forgotten played an extremely significant role in both the outbreak and the outcome of World War II.

For these reasons and more, the study of pivotal battles is a highly revealing analytical tool and a key component for understanding world history. Offering eye-opening insights into humanity’s past, a knowledge of mankind’s most critical military engagements enriches and deepens any view into civilizations and their evolution.

In the dynamic lectures of The Decisive Battles of World History, Professor Gregory S. Aldrete of the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay guides you in a discovery of the military conflicts that have had the greatest impact in shifting the direction of historical events and shaping our world. Covering nearly 4,000 years of history, this course explores more than three dozen history-making military engagements, from the landmark battles of the Western world to their counterparts across Asia, India, and the Middle East. These 36 lectures feature vital historical background, vivid accounts of the campaigns themselves, and a thorough look at their influence on the unfolding of history.

Military Encounters that Changed the World

Through his powerfully evocative words, aided by specially made maps and animations of the engagements, Professor Aldrete brings the battlefield events alive with gripping vividness, taking you blow-by-blow through the unfolding of each conflict. Throughout the lectures, he reveals rich historical background material that highlights the high drama, poignancy, and scope of the human experience of war.

In The Decisive Battles of World History, you’ll trace the critical pivot points where key military engagements determined the course history has taken. This enthralling learning experience provides far-reaching insights into the story of world cultures by revealing the foundational impact of military battles in human affairs.

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36 lectures
 |  Average 30 minutes each
  • 1
    What Makes a Battle Decisive?
    Contemplate the ways in which warfare can change the course of historical events. Examine the factors that make a military battle “decisive,” such as its role in transfers of power and its social and political effects, and consider the study of battles as an analytical tool for understanding history. x
  • 2
    1274 B.C. Kadesh— Greatest Chariot Battle
    The battle of Kadesh ushered in an unprecedented era of peace in the ancient Near East. Follow the strategy and tactics of the Egyptian and Hittite armies, featuring each side’s distinctive war chariots. Trace the unusual sequence of battlefield events that led to a remarkable treaty, an important forerunner of peaceful diplomacy. x
  • 3
    479 B.C. Plataea—Greece Wins Freedom
    In the 479 B.C. battle of Plataea, Greek “hoplite” forces fighting in phalanxes met the mighty army of the Persian superpower. Study the unfolding of this dramatic engagement, and learn how it ended the Persian threat to Greece and allowed for the flowering of Greece’s cultural Golden Age. x
  • 4
    331 B.C. Gaugamela—Alexander’s Genius
    The victory of Alexander at Gaugamela resulted in the spread of Greek culture throughout the Macedonian Empire. Trace Alexander’s campaign against the Persians, which led to the battle, and his bloody confrontation with the Persian forces, and grasp the brilliant maneuvers that allowed him to overcome his foe’s significant advantages on the battlefield. x
  • 5
    197 B.C. Cynoscephalae—Legion vs. Phalanx
    In 197 B.C., two rival military systems clashed. Learn about the forces of Philip V of Macedon, with their phalanx system; the legacy of Alexander; and the up-and-coming Romans with their “manipular” army based in flexible subunits of soldiers. Assess the far-reaching effects of the battle and its consequences for world history. x
  • 6
    31 B.C. Actium—Birth of the Roman Empire
    This great naval battle resulted from conflict within republican Rome. Follow the intense rivalry between Mark Antony and Octavian for domination of Rome, leading to the fateful events of the confrontation, and observe how it marked the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire. x
  • 7
    260–110 B.C. China—Struggles for Unification
    The wars of the 3rd and 2nd centuries B.C. were crucial in forging the later history of China. Study the military technology of the ancient Chinese and the conflicts through which the first Qin and Han emperors welded together a group of antagonistic kingdoms, creating a united China. x
  • 8
    636 Yarmouk & al-Qadisiyyah—Islam Triumphs
    In these dramatic conflicts, the Islamic Rashidun armies toppled two long-established empires. Learn about their defeat of the Byzantine army at Yarmouk and the Sassanid forces at al-Qadisiyyah, which determined the cultural, linguistic, and religious nature of the Middle East for the next 1,500 years. x
  • 9
    751 Talas & 1192 Tarain—Islam into Asia
    This lecture explores military engagements between widely differing cultures. Learn about the 751 battle between the Chinese Tang forces and the Abbasid Caliphate, which altered the religious orientation of central Asia. Then follow the 1192 clash between the Indian Rajputs and a Turkish Islamic army, and its permanent effects on Indian culture. x
  • 10
    1066 Hastings—William Conquers England
    The Battle of Hastings changed the course of both English and world history. Here, encounter the redoubtable figure of William the Conqueror and his 1066 invasion of England to claim the crown. Witness the terrible engagement at Hastings and its outcome, orienting England away from Scandinavian influence and toward Europe. x
  • 11
    1187 Hattin—Crusader Desert Disaster
    The religious and cultural effects of the Christian Crusades are still felt in today’s world. Study the origins of the Crusades and the events leading to the fateful confrontation at Hattin between Islamic and Christian forces, which critically altered the course of the wars. x
  • 12
    1260 Ain Jalut—Can the Mongols Be Stopped?
    Now, envision a militaristic society that threatened nearly all the civilizations of Asia and Europe. Study the rise of the Mongols, their terrifying conquests, and their astounding military expertise. Witness their clash in 1260 with the Egyptian Mamluks, a rare Mongol defeat that effectively halted their Western expansion. x
  • 13
    1410 Tannenberg—Cataclysm of Knights
    This 15th-century conflict pitted the armies of Poland and Lithuania against the fearsome Germanic order of the Teutonic Knights. Learn about the political background of the bloody confrontation at Tannenberg, the harrowing events on the battlefield, and the deep symbolic significance of the battle that still echoes today. x
  • 14
    Frigidus, Badr, Diu—Obscure Turning Points
    This lecture discusses battles that have had extremely important effects, though information about the specific events involved is scanty. Consider the battles of the Frigidus River and Badr, both vital turning points for world religions, and that of Diu, which marked the moment when Europe began its rise to world domination. x
  • 15
    1521 Tenochtitlán—Aztecs vs. Conquistadors
    The 16th-century Spanish conquest of the Americas resulted in some of the most unusual military encounters of all time. Here, learn about the campaign under Hernán Cortés to conquer Mexico, and how fewer than 1,000 Spaniards defeated the mighty Aztec Empire, which possessed armies comprising tens of thousands of warriors. x
  • 16
    1532 Cajamarca—Inca vs. Conquistadors
    Continue with Spain’s campaign against the vast and highly organized Inca Empire. Follow the daring maneuvers of the forces under Francisco Pizarro, aided by European military technology and including the kidnap and ransom of the Incan emperor, which enabled 190 men to vanquish an army of 40,000. x
  • 17
    1526 & 1556 Panipat—Babur & Akbar in India
    Two highly significant 16th-century battles were fought at the Indian town of Panipat. Learn about the rise of the Mughal emperors and the military clashes that first opened the door to their advance into India and then solidified their control, establishing a dynasty that would last for centuries. x
  • 18
    1571 Lepanto—Last Gasp of the Galleys
    The conquests of the Ottoman Turks led to the largest naval battle of the Renaissance. Trace the formation of the Holy League, an alliance of Christian powers against the raiding Ottomans; follow the events leading to Lepanto; and study the dramatic naval engagement that ended Turkish incursions into the maritime outposts of Christendom. x
  • 19
    1592 Sacheon—Yi’s Mighty Turtle Ships
    These great naval conflicts left deep imprints on two nations. Chart the 1592 Japanese conquest of Korea, the remarkable naval technologies involved, and the stunning victories of Korean admiral Yi Sun-shin, whose strategic actions defeated two invasions and established him as one of the greatest admirals of all time. x
  • 20
    1600 Sekigahara—Samurai Showdown
    In this monumental episode of the samurai era, learn about the underlying politics and the major figures in the conflict, including one whose wavering loyalty took an astonishing turn on the battlefield. Track the events that unified Japan under a dynasty of shoguns who would rule for 250 years. x
  • 21
    1683 Vienna—The Great Ottoman Siege
    The Ottoman campaign to capture Vienna was one of the largest and most significant in Ottoman history. Study the background of the siege and the military technology and strategy on both sides. Follow the unfolding engagement and the pivotal role of the Polish-Lithuanian armies, and grasp how Vienna marked a turning point for the Ottoman Empire. x
  • 22
    1709 Poltava—Sweden’s Fall, Russia’s Rise
    In the 17th century, Sweden emerged as the most powerful state in northern Europe. Learn about Swedish king Charles XII, his ambition to conquer Russia, and his opponent, the resourceful and determined Tsar Peter I. Witness the Swedish invasion and the battlefield events that constituted a reversal of fortunes for the two countries. x
  • 23
    1759 Quebec—Battle for North America
    This key incident in the Seven Years War between England and France critically shaped the future of North America. Discover the conflict through the eyes of the opposing commanders as the British assault Quebec City. Observe the remarkable serendipity favoring the British in the engagement, leading to an outcome with historic political effects. x
  • 24
    1776 Trenton—The Revolution’s Darkest Hour
    In late 1776, the rebellion of the American colonists appeared to be heading for dismal failure. Here, uncover the dramatic events that were the pivot point of the war. Learn how George Washington, in two critical battles, undertook bold actions to surprise and outwit the British, saving and revitalizing the revolutionary movement. x
  • 25
    1805 Trafalgar—Nelson Thwarts Napoleon
    In 1805, after subduing much of Europe, Napoleon Bonaparte turned his sights on England. Study the events leading to the largest naval battle of the age, as Napoleon’s combined French and Spanish fleet met the British navy under Admiral Horatio Nelson. Witness the monumental engagement, marking the beginning of Napoleon’s decline. x
  • 26
    1813 Leipzig—The Grand Coalition
    In this massive clash, a coalition of seven European powers united to oppose Napoleon. Trace the preliminary military actions culminating at Leipzig, where four armies finally converged on Napoleon’s forces. Follow the complex unfolding of the battle and the incident that transformed it into an outright disaster for the French. x
  • 27
    1824 Ayacucho—South American Independence
    The early 19th century saw the rise of numerous independence movements in Central and South America. Learn about three key leaders who were prominent in these struggles; their bold plan to liberate Peru; and the showdown on the plain of Ayacucho that ended Spanish rule in Latin America. x
  • 28
    1836 San Jacinto—Mexico’s Big Loss
    First, encounter the larger-than-life commanders of this extraordinary action, Sam Houston and Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. Track the tensions between the Mexican government and the province of Texas, resulting in the 18-minute battle that gained Texas independence and led to the United States acquiring nearly one-third of its continental territory. x
  • 29
    1862 Antietam—The Civil War’s Bloodiest Day
    At the time of this landmark battle in the American Civil War, the Confederacy seemed poised to achieve its goal of independence. Envision the protracted, bloody struggle between North and South, and consider the ways in which a marginal Union victory nevertheless altered the course of the war. x
  • 30
    1866 Königgrätz—Bismarck Molds Germany
    The historic engagement at Königgrätz brought a united Germany into being. Assess the opposing Prussian and Austrian forces, and track the Prussian initiative to capture the German-speaking states allied with Austria. Follow the unfolding battle blow by blow, and grasp how easily Prussia’s crushing victory could have ended as a disastrous defeat. x
  • 31
    1905 Tsushima—Japan Humiliates Russia
    A modern Japanese naval force stunned the world in this history-making battle. Learn about Japan’s 19th-century industrialization and militarization, its conflict with an expansionist Russia, and the maritime confrontation that radically altered the Western perception of Japan, signaling its entrance onto the global stage as a major power. x
  • 32
    1914 Marne—Paris Is Saved
    This providential clash critically shaped World War I. Study the German and French preparations for warfare and vital errors in planning by each side. Follow the offensive that began the war, the German commander’s fateful change of plans, and the ensuing battle that left both sides enmeshed in a horrifying, four-year stalemate. x
  • 33
    1939 Khalkin Gol—Sowing the Seeds of WWII
    Here, an obscure battle in Mongolia produced global effects. Track the tensions between Russia and Japan that led to a bloody border conflict that neither side had sought. Grasp how this one event directly contributed to both the outbreak of war in the Pacific and Europe and the outcome of the war itself. x
  • 34
    1942 Midway—Four Minutes Change Everything
    The advent of aircraft carriers brought a significant new era in naval warfare. Witness the most dramatic and pivotal of the “carrier versus carrier” battles, where the events of a short span of minutes permanently tilted the balance of power in the Pacific to the United States. x
  • 35
    1942 Stalingrad—Hitler’s Ambitions Crushed
    Chart the German invasion of Russia at the height of the war in Europe, which massed the full force of Hitler’s war machine. Follow the clash of the seemingly invincible German panzer units with the Red Army and the Russian winter, which ended the ascendancy of Nazi Germany. x
  • 36
    Recent & Not-So-Decisive Decisive Battles
    In concluding the course, take a keen look at what may be some of the historically decisive battles of the six decades following World War II. Finally, consider two famous conflicts often thought to be among the most decisive of all time, and see how careful analysis casts doubt on that conclusion. x

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Course Guidebook Details:
  • 272-page course synopsis
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  • Questions to consider

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Your professor

Gregory S. Aldrete

About Your Professor

Gregory S. Aldrete, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin, Green Bay
Dr. Gregory S. Aldrete is Professor of Humanistic Studies and History at the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay, where he has taught since 1995. He earned his B.A. from Princeton University and his master's degree and Ph.D. in Ancient History from the University of Michigan. Honored many times over for his research and his teaching, Professor Aldrete was named by his university as the winner of its highest awards in each...
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The Decisive Battles of World History is rated 4.7 out of 5 by 107.
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Learning a lot I am really enjoying learning about battles from all over the world and from all periods of time. Very interesting information.
Date published: 2019-03-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classes are fantastic. Being a former college professor, these classes are great in detail and wonderfully produced. The idea of continual learning is such a great opportunity you are offering. It is so much appreciated and my husband and I are looking forward to purchasing more classes.
Date published: 2019-03-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bravo!!! Very well done! I read a lot of history, ...and have for many a decade. This series of Decisive Battles is quite impressive. It is very well moderated and supported by graphs, pictures and charts. Battles are not presented in isolation but rather with a fairly comprehensive framework of times, motivations and the whimsy of turning history in the making. Always interesting, each episode is a model of neutral and rational analysis, right through to what made the event 'decisive' through far-reaching consequences. I definitely recommend this fascinating series!
Date published: 2019-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great presentation Being very interested in military history, I purchased this course tom get a better overall view of the subject. The lecturer presented each battle chosen with his reasoning for selection and then laying out the battle and its consequences on history. I have a new understanding of many of the battles and their part in the overall outcome of the campaigns. I would highly recommend this course for any student of military history.
Date published: 2019-02-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I think the title is extremely descriptive I thought there would be more emphasis on the battles and strategies. I am impressed with the lecturer and the historical background information associated with each battle.
Date published: 2019-02-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Highly recommend to military history buffs This was an excellent course, and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in military history. Dr. Aldrete has a quirky, but very direct, compelling, and engaging way of communicating. He provides a rich cross-section of military campaigns throughout world history, including some I had never heard of. He does a great job not only of giving the tactical details of the battle, but provides excellent insights and texture placing the event firmly within its proper broader historical and contextual backdrop, balanced with entertaining and insightful commentary on individual humans, individuals, and events.
Date published: 2018-12-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't wait for the next lecture In a word: superb. Professor Aldrete is a very clear speaker who really engages with his passion for history. He is very fair and balanced in his presentation. I would recommend starting with lecture 1 to understand the philosophy which is guiding the course, but after that, I think the lectures can be viewed in any order; that's what I did. If you're thinking of getting this series, it might be worth knowing that the lectures give equal weight to the context of the conflict as the actual battle, so if you are expecting a minute by minute account of how a particular battle unfolded you could be disappointed. For myself, all I can say is that this series has proved to be very stimulating and enjoyable and look forward to more from Professor Aldrete!
Date published: 2018-10-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Course review The course was well laid out, and the battles were very well presented. This was really a review for me, and I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would.
Date published: 2018-10-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good course Professor does a good job explaining the battles and wars do not happen in a vacuum but rather a result of political actions And strategies.
Date published: 2018-08-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great lectures Professor Aldrete is one of my favorites here at TGC. His delivery, knowledge and visuals are always a pleasure. He gets to the heart of the key issues in a presentation that is concise and easy to follow. He Is a great teacher who obviously cares for the subjects he discusses and his students. Bravo!
Date published: 2018-08-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I bought this a month ago and am so happy that I did. As a big fan of ancient and less contemporary history, as well as an Army veteran, it is fascinating how these battle stories interweave so significantly with the historical periods, and subsequent cultural and political developments right up to the present day. Never a boring moment in these exciting portrayals!
Date published: 2018-08-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love this course I am learning about history as the web of connections, wherein nothing happens alone. Causes and effects stretch for decades and more.
Date published: 2018-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Great Set of Lectures! When you decide to listen to one of the lectures, be sure you have a full thirty minutes to do so, as you are NOT going to want to interrupt it.
Date published: 2018-05-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Decisive Battles of World History I have listened to 5 history courses and Aldrete is one of the most entertaining speakers. Very knowledgeable and a pleasing presentation.
Date published: 2018-04-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good but marred I think Professor Aldrete's choice of battles and presentation are excellent. I really enjoyed his little asides where he gave examples of what contemporaries said like the Punch Magazine poem about the Needle Gun. However, he stated in his lecture on Kadesh that the Sea People brought the chariot to Egypt. This is wrong the Hyksos invasion c. 1640 BC brought the chariot. The Sea People invasions were c. 1177 BC. The DVD version has wrong dates posted several times on the graphics, and the Course Guidebook needs editing. For example on page 49, Hsiang is pursed by the Chu cavalry. Hsiang was the Chu commander, he was pursed by the Han. The lecture has incorrect but the guidebook incorrect.
Date published: 2018-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Informative and Captivating I Really enjoyed this course as it opens your eyes to the impact the battles had on history from ancient times to modern times.
Date published: 2018-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Why I Like Great Courses This is another good example of why i like the Great Courses. The professor is enthusiastic and knowledgeable, and he presents a fascinating topic. My only criticism of the course is that, for a few of the lectures, he spends so much time talking about the background to a particular battle that he provides very little information about the actual battle. This is a minor criticism, though, and I understand that he is confined to thirty minutes to cover a large topic. My true regret is that the course is not much longer. I would happily watch a "Part 2" covering another thirty-six decisive battles.
Date published: 2018-01-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Terrific visual aids It's hard to stop watching this very engaging professor with his grasp of details and the historical significance of each chosen battle. But what I particularly love about this course is that he provides wonderfully clear and simple diagrams about troop movement during the battles. I have been interested in battle strategy and tactics for a while but have a hard time visualizing general and specific troop movements and changes. This course is great to help describe the ebb and flow of battle. Couldn't be better for a novice like me!
Date published: 2017-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great review of great battles in context I'm a big history fan (literally, since "big history" is a subdiscipline that looks at the history of the universe). Anyway, one of my favorite courses that I've listened to and I'm a top 1% purchaser of courses. He doesn't just describe the battles, but also the historical context and key personalities, which gives "life" to these events. Also works to defend why these battles (some obscure) were so important in history. Of course, it's also disheartening to know that while it is fascinating to view these events from afar, they're beyond horrible to actually endure, and we've gotten ever better at throwing "rocks" at each other - okay, he starts with people throwing rocks on sticks (spears & arrows) from chariots.
Date published: 2017-12-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent This course is excellent. A good choice of subject, and well presented by an engaging enthusiastic presenter.
Date published: 2017-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An unusual and illustrative course The lectures are very engaging and they kept me glued to the screen through the night (insomnia warning!). Seriously though, I really like the format of the lectures: they are not just about the battles themselves but start with some background information on why the battles are important, why the belligerents were fighting to begin with, and what weapons and tactics they used. I like the artists' rendition of the different weapons, soldiers, and other things that highly enhance the visual experience. The teacher is obviously an engaged historian and knows his subject eminently.
Date published: 2017-10-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Top Professor - great detail I really enjoyed this lecture and was very pleased there were some new battles examined in addition to obvious "oldies but goodies." Also what was very well laid out is not only the basics of the battle but the lead up and what made the outcome such a big change. Basically the lectures cover reasons why a battle was won or lost, but also point to why this set the table for the next 50-100 years of events.
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent presentation and detailed informatio Very entertaining with visual effects to make the information understandable.
Date published: 2017-07-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fascinating discussion of importance of warfare I bought this course on Battles for my 17 year old grandson and listened to it first to see if it was suitable. This is the most interesting and best delivered course I have bought over ten years. A history major and life long (75 years) reader of history, with a well developed critical nature, I was delighted by both the content and delivery of this course. Every minute I learned something new. My grandson will thoroughly enjoy enjoy the course. The visuals are very helpful and well chosen.
Date published: 2017-06-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wish I had this professer in school Great information and great tie ins that were perfect
Date published: 2017-05-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Consider the episodes rather than the course It has taken me over a year to finish this course. My historical interests lie in the Classical and Modern eras. I devoured the first few lectures and then quickly lost interest. I slogged through the tedious, uninteresting middle half of the course only to be rekindled in the last half-dozen lectures. Part of the problem was with me and my own stated interests. The other part of the problem was in the course itself. It is not cohesive and the approach to each battle is disjointed and lacking commonality. I would have much preferred a standardized presentation with specific objectives for each battle, the key players, etc. Instead, information was just vomited out at times. In the end, I would advise the learner to approach this as a case-by-case basis. Don't expect the entirety of the course to be satisfying, but dine on individual lectures. There are true treasures of wisdom and historicity there. Professor Aldrete's presentation style was quirky at first but could be off-putting for some.
Date published: 2017-04-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from In depth, fully explained, and historically set. One of the best courses I have purchased on TGC so far. The professor's communication skills are excellent. Highly recommended for history buffs.
Date published: 2017-04-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from OK I have on looked at two DVD's. The first was defective - unable to view lessons # 1- 4.
Date published: 2017-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Learned Lecturer with a Different Take The professor in this series proposes his own criteria for what makes battles "decisive" and is very consistent in applying this in his lectures. While many of his selected battles are familiar ones, quite a few are not. I've enjoyed each and every lecture in this series as what was familiar is examined with a different perspective; what is new packs a great deal of facts and interpretation into 30 minutes. Highly recommended for both military history buffs and novices alike!
Date published: 2017-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unexpected battles and wonderful because of that Professor Aldrete's battles are not the ones usually presented as the decisive battles of history, they are battles that had a specific effect on overall culture, military strategy or technology. A wonderfully unexpected way to look at battles. He describes the battles wonderfully while describing the shift in his defined effects as a result of the battle. I highly recommend.
Date published: 2016-11-21
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