The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914

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HarperCollins, 19.03.2013 - 697 Seiten

On the morning of June 28, 1914, when Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie Chotek, arrived at Sarajevo railway station, Europe was at peace. Thirty-seven days later, it was at war. The conflict that resulted would kill more than fifteen million people, destroy three empires, and permanently alter world history.

The Sleepwalkers reveals in gripping detail how the crisis leading to World War I unfolded. Drawing on fresh sources, it traces the paths to war in a minute-by-minute, action-packed narrative that cuts among the key decision centers in Vienna, Berlin, St. Petersburg, Paris, London, and Belgrade. Distinguished historian Christopher Clark examines the decades of history that informed the events of 1914 and details the mutual misunderstandings and unintended signals that drove the crisis forward in a few short weeks.

How did the Balkans—a peripheral region far from Europe's centers of power and wealth—come to be the center of a drama of such magnitude? How had European nations organized themselves into opposing alliances, and how did these nations manage to carry out foreign policy as a result? Clark reveals a Europe racked by chronic problems—a fractured world of instability and militancy that was, fatefully, saddled with a conspicuously ineffectual set of political leaders. These rulers, who prided themselves on their modernity and rationalism, stumbled through crisis after crisis and finally convinced themselves that war was the only answer.

Meticulously researched and masterfully written, The Sleepwalkers is a magisterial account of one of the most compelling dramas of modern times.

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LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - maneekuhi - LibraryThing

In the very last sentence of the book, Christopher Clark explains his title: "In this sense, the protagonists of 1914 were sleepwalkers, watchful but unseeing.....blind to the reality of the horror ... Vollständige Rezension lesen

LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - oparaxenos - LibraryThing

This book was hard going at times, with its huge cast of characters, but the effort was well worth it. Clark has done a tremendous job of research and has looked at the origins of World War I from a much different angle. He makes it clear how futile blind nationalism is as a policy-making tool. Vollständige Rezension lesen

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Über den Autor (2013)

Christopher Clark is a professor of modern European history and a fellow of St. Catharine's College at the University of Cambridge, UK. He is the author of Iron Kingdom: The Rise and Downfall of Prussia, 1600-1947, among other books.

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