Just watched - http://www.pbs.org/wnet/civilization-west-and-rest
Was one of the best 2 hours I’ve seen on tv forever. Interesting to note at the end that it was funded by Peter Thiel amongst others.
NY Times review of the tv show here
Lots of lessons for founders in studying the rise and fall of empires.
Just noticed he has a book covering this in more detail, just ordered a copy from Amazon