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A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh and the Problems of Peace, 1812-1822 Paperback – September 20, 1973
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The Napoleonic Wars were followed by an almost unprecedented century of political stability. A World Restored analyses the alliances formed and treaties signed by the world's leaders during the years 1812 to 1822, focussing on the personalities of the two main negotiators: Viscount Castlereagh, the British foreign secretary, and Prince von Metter- nich, his Austrian counterpart. Henry Kissinger explains how the turbulent relationship between these two men, the differing concerns of their respective countries and the changing nature of diplomacy all influenced the final shape of the peace. Originally published in 1957.
Top Customer Reviews
Kissinger allows us to understand the difficulties inherent to finding a new legitimacy, accepted by all. He also delves into the best ways to solve the disputes that often arise in coalitions that include actors whose interests differ a lot. His comments were specifically about the Quadruple Alliance (Great Britain, Austria, Prusia and Russia) but can be applied to many other cases.
I specially liked how he dissected the personalites of the actors in this play, Napoleon, Metternich,Castlereagh and Talleyrand, and the manner in which he highlights that those personalities influenced the course of history.
This is an important period, because as the title of the book claims, a world was restaured. The Concert of Europe began and a new era of peace started, thanks to the perspicacy of Metternich and after the instability caused by the napoleonic wars. In this book we get to know a little more of Kissinger as an historian but also as a diplomat, as he shows us the intricacies of politics and diplomacy.
Even if this book is sometimes a little slow, I give it my highest recommendation, because it leaves you with much more knowledge, not only about this period but also regarding political realism.