A new and important history of the epic story of the Great Wall of China that guides the reader through the conquests and cataclysms of the Chinese empire, from the second millennium BC the present day. Over 2,200 years old and 4,300 miles long, the Great Wall of China has made an overwhelmingly confident physical statement about the country it spans: about China's age-old sense of being an advanced civilization anxious to draw a clear line between itself and the "barbarians" at its borders. But behind the wall's intimidating exterior -- and the myths that have clustered around it -- is a complex history that has both defined and undermined China. It is this history that Julia Lovell explores in her enthralling book. "The Great Wall" is an epic tale that stretches over two millennia as it follows the rise and fall of the great Chinese ruling dynasties. Full of astonishing details and extraordinary characters -- from emperors to engineers, statesmen to soldiers -- this is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand China's past, present, and future.Lovell, Julia is the author of 'American Yoga ' with ISBN 9780802142979 and ISBN 0802142974.