Europe Between the Wars: A Political History

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9780582418691: Europe Between the Wars: A Political History
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It had seemed 'the war to end wars', yet within twenty-one years the unthinkable had become the inevitable and Europe was burning again. How did it happen? In this sober yet compelling account of Europe between the wars, Martin Kitchen traces the course of the deepening crisis in Europe by looking first at the peace settlement itself, and then at the economic and social problems of the interwar years.

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Cover copy - Kitchin: Europe between the Wars: A Political History

Back cover

The Great War traumatised a generation. Millions died. The European economy was left in ruins and the social structure disrupted. It broke the old certainties of nineteenth-century Europe: for those who survived there was no going back. To them it had seemed ¿the war to end all wars¿. Yet peace when it finally came in November 1918 brought few solutions and many new problems. A mere twenty-one years later the unthinkable became the inevitable and Europe was burning again.

How did it all happen?

In this compelling and bestselling account of the Europe between the Wars, Martin Kitchen traces the course of the deepening crisis by looking first at the peace settlement itself, and then at the economic and social problems of the interwar years.

Separate chapters follow on the Soviet Union, the often ignored countries of Eastern Europe, Italy, Weimar Germany, Britain, France, Spain and Nazi Germany. The book concludes with a chapter on the origins of the Second World War.

Although the events have a direct bearing on our lives today, they are still too close for many readers to see them in a true perspective. This clear, cogent and readable study is, therefore, all the more valuable: it is both an exposition of what happened and an explanation of why.

Front flap

Idealism became the first post Great War casualty; and President Wilson¿s vision of a better world in which human rights and freedoms were guaranteed remained a dream. An unsatisfactory settlement failed to resolve the tensions that had caused the war in the first place.

The realities of power politics drew the exhausted combatants, victorious and defeated alike, into new crises; and the democratic powers were soon under siege from the new forces of both the Left and Right.

But the Soviet Revolution, triumphant in Russia, did not spread to the other European states; rather, right-wing extremism proved a far greater threat to the western democracies. With chilling success, totalitarian regimes of the right took power in Italy, Germany and, ultimately, Spain. The unthinkable became the inevitable.
The author

Martin Kitchin is Professor of History at Simon Fraser University, Canada.

Back flap

(275 years of publishing history logo - from Louise Corless)

As part of Longman¿s 275th Anniversary - a landmark in publishing history - we are launching an exciting collection of classic books.

The Silver Library celebrates the very best in history writing published by Longman. This selection of seminal and best-selling works by world renowned authorities will become the essential collection.

Titles in the Silver Library are:

John Tosh
The Pursuit of History, Third Edition

Bernard W Anderson
The Living World of the Old Testament, Fourth Edition

R H C Davis
A History of Medieval Europe, Second Edition

H G Koenigsberger, George L Mosse, G Q Bowler
Europe in the Sixteenth Century, Second Edition

Barry Coward
The Stuart Age 1603 - 1714, Second Edition

H G Koenigsberger
Early Modern Europe 1500 - 1789

Asa Briggs
The Age of Improvement 1783 - 1867, Second Edition

M S Anderson
The Ascendancy of Europe 1815 - 1914, Second Edition

James Joll
The Origins of the First World War, Second Edition

J M Roberts
Europe 1880 - 1945, Second Edition

Martin Kitchen
Europe Between the Wars

Peter Calvocoressi
World Politics Since 1945, Seventh Edition

About the Author:

Martin Kitchen is Professor Emeritus of history at Simon Fraser University, Canada. He is author of numerous books on European history, including The German Offensives of 1918 (2001), The Cambridge Illustrated History of Germany (2000) and Nazi Germany: A Critical Introduction (2004).

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