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Economic History Course or Text?

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I'm looking for an economics history course or text to supplement a 3-year Great Books/WTM type cycle for high school, integrating history and literature over each time period.  We're finishing up ancient history now in 9th grade, so I'd be looking mostly for something starting something around A.D. 500 or 1500.  I'm looking at this as a supplement or companion course since some of the history materials we may use are pretty poor in their coverage of economics.  Thanks!  ETA: It could be a book, not textbook.

Edited by Brad S
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I've found two possible books for DS to read on economic history, but I have no experience with either book nor have I heard of anyone who's used either book:


1.The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500 to 2000 by Paul Kennedy; and

2. The Birth of Plenty: How the Prosperity of the Modern World Was Created by Wm Bernstein


The Birth of Plenty looks to be an easier read from reviews, and from what I've read of his, he knows his economics and he's balanced; it seems more focused on how economics has affected standard of living through the ages.  Kennedy is probably better on the history side and seems to focus on how economics has impacted military strength in the last 500 years; the reviewers were pretty positive but indicated that it's not an introductory level text.  They both seem to address reasons I wanted to cover the critical role of economics in history but different aspects.  There may be other choices...I'm convinced that I should do something to supplement the standard world history texts I've seen, but I'm still not sure what to do.  Any experience with these or others?

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