Simon Sebag Montefiore
1/10/2023
Simon Sebag Montefiore, Bestselling Author of 'The World: A Family History', Discusses the Power of Family Dynasties

In this episode, bestselling author and historian, Simon Sebag Montefiore, discusses his new book, which covers the key families who have shaped global history.

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In this episode, bestselling author and historian, Simon Sebag Montefiore, discusses his new book, which covers the key families who have shaped global history.

His latest work has proven to be a hit, with Henry Kissinger commenting that: ‘Sebag Montefiore interweaves the stories of the servants, courtiers and kings, pioneers, preachers and philosophers who have made history. A brilliant synthesis that will impart fresh insight to even the most learned readers.’

In this interview, he discusses some key ideas covered in the book, including some case studies of some lesser known dynasties who have had a momentous impact on the course of history, and why family influence is making a comeback in some parts of the world.He also explains how the prism of family allowed him to better explore the role of women, migration and non-Eurocentric themes, before reflecting on some lessons learnt in his wider writing career.

Simon Sebag Montefiore

Simon Sebag Montefiore is the bestselling and prize-winning writer of history and fiction, whose books are published in 48 languages. He is the author of international bestsellers 'Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar', 'Jerusalem: The Biography', 'Young Stalin', 'Catherine the Great and the Potemkin', 'The Romanovs' and 'Voices of History', as well as the Moscow trilogy of novels and the 'Royal Rabbits of London' for children. He has won prizes for both history and fiction, with all of his works currently being developed for film and TV.

Themes & Collaborations

Simon Sebag Montefiore is the widely acclaimed author of ‘Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar’, ‘Jerusalem: The Biography’, ‘Young Stalin’, ‘Catherine the Great & Potemkin’, ‘Voices of History’ and ‘The Romanovs’. All of his books are currently being adapted for film and television. Prior to becoming an author, Simon worked as a banker and then as a war correspondent. 

In the episode, he discusses his latest work, ‘The World: A Family History’. The book tells the story of humanity, from prehistory to the present day, through the lens of the one thing all humans have in common: family. With a focus on well-known names, from the Caesars to the Obamas, and lesser known ones, it captures the story of humankind in all its joy, sorrow, romance, ingenuity and cruelty. 

In the interview, he also reflects on his research for ‘Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar’ (Putin was not a fan of this one!). He also discusses the process of writing ‘Jerusalem: The Biography’. 

Simon joins a number of well-known and respected authors who have appeared on the show, including Peter Frankopan, Niall Ferguson and Micheal Lewis.

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