5 Cities that Ruled the World, by Douglas Wilson
5 Cities that Ruled the World is an overview description of how the cities of Jerusalem, Athens, Rome, London, and New York ruled the world. Douglas Wilson is a theologian and teaches college level ethics and logic. He is also editor of a cultural journal best known for its humor and satire, which Wilson fails to successfully interject throughout the book.
Wilson wants his readers to be reminded of liberty and the blessings liberty brings. He does this by devoting a short chapter for each city; Jerusalem represents the soul set free, stating it is a great and standing metaphor for spiritual liberty. Athens established the ideal of free inquiry, where we are grateful not for every idea to come out of Athens, but for the freedom to reject ideas. Rome passed on liberty under law, and gave us understanding of civic liberties and equitable laws. London set free our literary imagination, where extraordinary literature was made available for ordinary people. New York has shown us the freedom to trade, this city being the world’s financial center.
I think Wilson should have justified his choice of the 5 cities. The subtitle reads ‘Global History’; however, there are no eastern hemisphere cities. I see this book as a springboard for more in depth research, not only for cities that ruled the world, but for the biblical references. I would recommend 5 Cities that Ruled the World as a quick read listed as a young adult book.
I am a member of Thomas Nelson’s book reviewer blogger program.
Book Review by Mary Crocco