The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century
The World War of 1914-1918, the Great War, was the first of the man-made disasters of the twentieth century. In many ways it was without precedent. Never had the battlefield been so vast, whether in the trenches, in the sky, or on and in the seas. Never had a war reached so deeply into the lives of people so far away from the battlefield. The shock waves generated by this...more
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published September 1996 by Penguin Group
(first published 1996)
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A book about World War I, its origin and aftermath. The book contains lots of pictures, many gory and gruesome. It has quotes from leaders and foot soldiers, intellectuals and historians of the time. It also discusses the Russian revolution and the conference and treaty of Versailles. World War I was gory, brutal and pointless, and set the inevitable stage for Hitler and WWII. As much as I have read about it, I still do not understand why it was fought. Many people at the time thought the same w...more
A well presented history of World War I that recounts events not only of the era, but of future consequences – as the sub-title of the book exhorts the “Great War” led to more cataclysms in the twentieth century. There are many personalities discussed – such as Kathe Kollwitz, Arthur Conan Doyle and Siegfried Sassoon. It gives the book a strong emotional and intimate aspect. The tragedy of Gallipoli and the Eastern front are also reviewed. The accompanying pictures are intense and effective.
Nov 21, 2013 Rick Brindle rated it 5 of 5 stars · review of another edition
I read this book after watching the excellent BBC series. Both were very good. This book is a vast sweeping account of world war one, talking about the build up and aftermath, and its place in context of the rest of the 20th century. It also deals with the politics, the seeds sown afterwards, and also the men who fought it. If there is one book to read as an all in introduction to everything great war, this is it.
I got this book as a companion to the PBS documentary of the same name that aired over ten years ago. I have always been interested in European history from about 1870 through World War 2. I loved the documentary and this book has a lot of rarely seen photographs with commentary and articles by noted historians.