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The First World War [Paperback]

Stuart Robson

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Book Description

March 29, 2007 1405824719 978-1405824712 2
This is a compelling account of the First World War. It offers clear analysis of the war on land, sea, and air, and considers the impact of the war on Europe's civilian population. Issues addressed include the relationship between war and industrialisation, trench warfare, the long term effects of the war on changing social structures, and economic and demographic consequences. The main text is supplemented by a rich selection of primary source material (from songs, soldiers' slang, to diary accounts).

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The First World War + The Second World War: A Short History (Struggle for Survival)
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Editorial Reviews


"This book is eminently suitable for use in high schools, two-year colleges and basic introductory courses at four-year colleges and universities."
Jesse Kauffmann, Stanford University

From the Back Cover

Stuart Robson                                                        The First World War 2nd Ed



The First World War shattered empires and ended the era of European dominance in World History – not at all the outcome expected by those involved in the conflict. Those nations who took part in the First World War did so with the aim of being “home by Christmas”, and with the assumption that they could control events. Contrary to expectations, this was not the war to ‘end all wars’ nor did it ‘make the world safe for democracy’, as has been proved by subsequent history. Ultimately, this is the question still to be answered almost a century later: Can war breed democracy?


In this new edition of his compelling account of World War I, Professor Robson examines the experience of nations drawn into the conflict from the perspectives of both the Home Front and the Trenches. He explodes the myths and assumptions surrounding the course of the First World War and replaces them with a clear-eyed account of this ‘seminal catastrophe of the Twentieth Century’.


Areas covered include:

  • The course of the war, including all major battles: from the Marne in 1914 to the German spring offensive in 1918 and the ‘Last Hundred Days’ which finally brought the war to an end.
  • Political and social upheaval on the home fronts and accounts of the role of various leaders throughout the war
  • Surrounding themes such as war and industrialisation; trench warfare; the effects of war on changing social structures; and the economic and demographic consequences.
  • The soldiers personal experiences in the Trenches – based on primary source material



Updated throughout, and written in a clear and accessible manner, this book contains maps, a glossary, a chronology of main events and a documents section to provide students with an invaluable introduction to the events and consequences of the First World War.


Stuart Robson is Professor Emeritus of History at Trent University, Ontario, Canada.

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