This book begins in a narrow territory, strictly Western, and extends with the passage of time to include the poetry, plays, novels, and works of speculation of the great authors of the past and present, from Russia to Mexico. His objective is to tell the whole story of Western writing in languages other than English from the twelfth-century Chanson de Roland to Evtushenko's poetry of the 1960's.Cohen not only presents a factual account of historical growth. The book reflects the author's own judgments and valuations, arrived at in the course of almost forty years' reading in the main European languages. A work of original criticism, "A History of Western Literature" immediately became a standard reference when first published. In this new edition, the author has included revisions covering the most important recent writers and their work.