FS Editions of Shirer's Rise & Fall of Third Reich

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FS Editions of Shirer's Rise & Fall of Third Reich

1St._Troy
dec 23, 2015, 4:56 pm

FS has released two editions of William Shirer's "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich," a 2-volume set in 1995 and a 4-volume set in 2004. Online secondary market listings show no differences other than outer appearances (I'm wondering if either is abridged, has more photos, or any other differences that would stand out if I were able to compare the original FS listings).

Are any of you aware of any meaningful differences between them? I will soon hunt down/buy one of these sets, but would like to know what I'm really choosing between.

2Pellias
Redigeret: dec 23, 2015, 5:14 pm

I have picked up that there are more pictures in the 4 volumes edition (i own this version myself)

3EclecticIndulgence
jul 19, 2017, 12:33 pm

Denne meddelelse er blevet slettet af dens forfatter.

4adriano77
jul 19, 2017, 12:43 pm

I have the 1995 version. The 2004 has more photos.

Speaking of which, this was actually my first FS book.

5EclecticIndulgence
jul 19, 2017, 12:45 pm

Denne meddelelse er blevet slettet af dens forfatter.

6adriano77
jul 19, 2017, 12:53 pm

No. It's unabridged, don't worry.

IMO, the 1995 has a much more striking cover design if you're concerned with that at all.

7cronshaw
jul 19, 2017, 1:26 pm

The 1995 first printing is I think one of Folio's best ever binding designs for a standard edition, quite iconic. I don't know why they made the binding of the 2004 reprint so pedestrian in comparison.

8elladan0891
jul 19, 2017, 1:27 pm

>3 EclecticIndulgence:
I was just consulting Folio 60, so looked this up for you:

1995: 2 volumes, 16 pages of plates in each
"Full red cloth with a swastika design (fractured for volume II) in black and white; endleaves with maps in red and black."

2004: 4 volumes, colour frontispiece + 16 pages of plates in each
"Bound by Cambridge University Press in dark metallic grey cloth, the front board of each volume covered with paper printed with monochrome photographic montage; silver endleaves with maps (different in each volume)"

So looks like the later edition has twice the number of photos + 4 frontispieces, but paper front boards. Your pick )

9cronshaw
Redigeret: jul 20, 2017, 3:58 am

Comparison of the binding designs (from a quick pilfering of the internet):

(1) first printing 1995



(2) second printing 2004



(edited to replace first image with one showing fractured swastika of second volume)

10cpg
jul 19, 2017, 1:53 pm

>7 cronshaw: "I don't know why they made the binding of the 2004 reprint so pedestrian in comparison."

Maybe for considerations like this? We do live in rather a silly age.

11cronshaw
jul 19, 2017, 6:49 pm

I would hope that that wasn't the case with Folio. Given that the linked article mentions that 'in Germany, the swastika is outlawed but can escape censorship if it is viewed as historically or educationally relevant in a given context', I would have thought that it's use here to illustrate a thoroughly researched factual history of the Third Reich would be seen as perfectly reasonable.

12Ipcress_File
jul 20, 2017, 12:06 am

So no text was lost in consolidating four volumes into two?

The above never occurred.

The 1995 two volume edition was expanded to the 2004 four volume edition.

13gdsamphier
jul 20, 2017, 10:00 am

>7 cronshaw: When the 1995 Folio edition was released, I remember Folio sending out the advertising brochure in an envelope that also displayed the swastika, and then a bit later on, sending out a letter of apology acknowledging that it may have upset some members to receive a letter with the swastika on it.

So, I presume they received complaints and found how effecting the swastika still is. Perhaps when it came to the 2004 edition they were a bit more cautious all round.

I agree, though, that the binding on the 1995 edition shows Folio at its best; it's powerful.

14adriano77
jul 20, 2017, 11:16 am

>13 gdsamphier:

Oh dear, a swastika on the envelope itself? That's a bit of a blunder, haha. I can imagine the PR nightmare that would cause nowadays.

15cronshaw
Redigeret: jul 21, 2017, 6:38 am

>13 gdsamphier: Thanks for that tidbit, that was well before I contracted FAD. I imagine a swastika on the envelope itself could alarm some members, or perhaps their neighbours!

16sviswanathan
jul 20, 2017, 8:28 pm

>13 gdsamphier: I could see how that became an issue! I think that not putting swastikas on envelopes is probably for the better.

17LolaWalser
jul 20, 2017, 10:08 pm

Both designs are awful.

18PartTimeBookAddict
aug 23, 2023, 5:26 pm

Just bumping this thread because I noticed a recent run on the 2 vol. set on ebay. 9 were purchased so far in August. Any thoughts on the spike in popularity?

Is there a preference to the 2 vol. set vs the 4 vol.? I was leaning towards getting the 4 vol. set because it contains more photos, but am I missing anything with the 2 vol?

I've been holding off because of my self-imposed book buying ban, but don't want to miss a chance if they're all being scooped up. Thanks!

19antinous_in_london
aug 23, 2023, 11:13 pm

>18 PartTimeBookAddict: Maybe people are reading up in advance of the US elections next year ! LOL

20PartTimeBookAddict
aug 24, 2023, 1:12 am

>19 antinous_in_london: Hopefully they can learn from the mistakes of others!

I read Snyder’s Bloodlands last year and am still working my way through Arendt. I think Shirer will cap off that era for me for a while.

21SinsenKrysset
aug 24, 2023, 4:24 am

The first edition resembles the original design that caused some controversy. You can read about it in the "Development history" section on the wikipedia site: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Rise_and_Fall_of_the_Third_Reich

"art director Frank Metz designed the black jacket bearing the swastika. Initially bookstores across the country protested displaying the swastika and threatened not to stock the book. The controversy soon blew over and the cover shipped with the symbol"

22ian_curtin
aug 24, 2023, 5:20 am

A landmark book, but if they are looking at this era / topic I wonder would they be better off looking at something more current. Richard J Evans' trilogy would be the obvious candidate for me.

23PartTimeBookAddict
aug 24, 2023, 2:39 pm

>22 ian_curtin: Interesting, but I'll always lean towards a "man on the ground" journalist perspective over precise academia.

Have you read both? What is the difference between the works?

24ian_curtin
aug 25, 2023, 3:50 am

>23 PartTimeBookAddict: I would say there is room for both, they are not by any means mutually exclusive. The "man on the ground" can convey immediacy, impressions, mood, capture events and protagonists up close. As against that, such accounts can be incomplete, partial, lack perspective or be unable to connect a mass of information coherently. The historian can be dry, treating events by rote or trying to fit everything into neat frames and narratives. On the other hand, the best historians bring insight, analysis, reflection and rigor to their accounts.

Having read both Shirer and Evans (with the caveat it is many, many years since I read Shirer) I wouldn't say it is fair to set them up as some sort of "opposite ends of the spectrum". Shirer's is a a serious work of history, made compelling by his role as an eye-witness to much of it. Evans is the leading modern historian (in English) of the topic, and his analysis is trenchant and often provocative. But he is also an excellent writer able to convey a narrative while also sharing complexity and a breadth of information.

Given Shirer's book is now 80-odd years old, and allowing for the extensive research and access to new sources etc. that Evans brings to his work, I'd say that the case for providing FS readers with an edition of his books in addition to / as an alternative to the existing Shirer editions is strong.

25PartTimeBookAddict
aug 25, 2023, 11:15 am

>24 ian_curtin: Agreed. There is a strong desire to throw out an older works of history because they don't have "all the facts". In researching these two volumes, it seems Evans is quite the mud-slinger, done in a backhanded academic way of course.

As a reader what matters is my relationship with the writer on the page. I will never remember all the facts and figures and am not looking for that as a layman reader. The overall narrative is the only thing that I take away.

But I always tend to go with the passion of a first-hand account. I would rather learn what Woodstock was like from a burnt-out hippie who has there but was high the whole time, rather than a historian who can tell me at exactly what hour the last amp was loaded up and the barometric pressure.

26cpg
aug 25, 2023, 11:38 am

>25 PartTimeBookAddict: "it seems Evans is quite the mud-slinger"

Does your research indicate that Shirer did less mud-slinging?