Europe's Last Summer: Who Started the Great War in 1914?

Europe's Last Summer: Who Started the Great War in 1914?

David Fromkin / Aug 20, 2019

Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in When war broke out in Europe in it surprised a European population enjoying the most beautiful summer in memory For nearly a century since historians have debated the causes of the war Some hav

  • Title: Europe's Last Summer: Who Started the Great War in 1914?
  • Author: David Fromkin
  • ISBN: 9780375725753
  • Page: 449
  • Format: Paperback
  • When war broke out in Europe in 1914, it surprised a European population enjoying the most beautiful summer in memory For nearly a century since, historians have debated the causes of the war Some have cited the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand others have concluded it was unavoidable.In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin provides a different answer hostilitiWhen war broke out in Europe in 1914, it surprised a European population enjoying the most beautiful summer in memory For nearly a century since, historians have debated the causes of the war Some have cited the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand others have concluded it was unavoidable.In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin provides a different answer hostilities were commenced deliberately In a riveting re creation of the run up to war, Fromkin shows how German generals, seeing war as inevitable, manipulated events to precipitate a conflict waged on their own terms Moving deftly between diplomats, generals, and rulers across Europe, he makes the complex diplomatic negotiations accessible and immediate Examining the actions of individuals amid larger historical forces, this is a gripping historical narrative and a dramatic reassessment of a key moment in the twentieth century.

    Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin provides a different answer hostilities were commenced deliberately In a riveting re creation of the run up to war, Fromkin shows how German generals, seeing war as inevitable, manipulated events to precipitate a conflict waged on their own terms. EUROPE S LAST SUMMER by David Fromkin Kirkus Reviews Indeed, writes Fromkin, when a Slavic nationalist assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June , , in Sarajevo, the rest of Europe practically yawned even Austria did not retaliate immediately, despite Germany s urging to get on with the game. Europe s Last Summer by David Fromkin Review BookPage According to historian David Fromkin, Europe s main The early years of the th century in Europe were characterized by an accelerating arms race In Germany alone, about percent of the Reich s budget was spent on the army and navy. Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in Jan , In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin provides a different answer hostiliti For nearly a century since, historians have debated the causes of the war Some have cited the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand others have concluded it was unavoidable. Europe s Last Summer Analysis academia Europe s Last Summer conveys to the reader a very understandable comprehensive view of the beginnings of the WWI Fromkin s use of contemporaries and other historians quotes throughout the book makes not only for a interesting read but also adds to the credibility of his information. Europe s Last Summer by David Fromkin OverDrive And yet its causes, both long term and immediate, have continued to be shrouded in mystery In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin reveals a new pattern in the happenings of that fateful July and August, which leads in unexpected directions. Europe s Last Summer by David Fromkin PenguinRandomHouse About Europe s Last Summer When war broke out in Europe in , it surprised a European population enjoying the most beautiful summer in memory For nearly a century since, historians have debated the causes of the war Some have cited the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand others have concluded it was unavoidable. EUROPE S LAST SUMMER Who Started the Great War in The enormity of the horrors unleashed in that fateful summer and the culpability of all sides in exacerbating them has made laying blame for the war squarely at the foot of the German and Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in When war broke out in Europe in , it surprised a European population enjoying the most beautiful summer in memory For nearly a century since, historians have debated the causes of the war Some have cited the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand others have concluded it was unavoidable.In Europe s Last Summer, David Fromkin provides a different answer hostilities were commenced Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in Mar , You can listen to the full audiobook Europe s Last Summer Who Started the Great War in , free at our library The early summer of was the most glorious Europeans could remember.

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    About "David Fromkin"

      • David Fromkin

        David Fromkin is a noted author, lawyer, and historian, best known for his historical account on the Middle East, A Peace to End All Peace 1989 , in which he recounts the role European powers played between 1914 and 1922 in creating the modern Middle East The book was a finalist for both the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize Fromkin has written seven books in total, with his most recent in 2004, Europe s Last Summer Who Started The Great War in 1914 A graduate of the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Law School, he is University Professor, Professor of History, International Relations, and Law at Boston University, where he was also the Director of The Frederick S Pardee Center for the Study of the Long Range Future Fromkin also sits on the editorial board of the Middle East Quarterly, a publication of the Middle East Forum think tank He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.


    594 Comments

    1. Jagow [Germany’s foreign minister] noted that Molke [Germany’s chief of staff] told him that in two or three years the “military superiority of our enemies would…be so great that he did not know how he could overcome them. Today we would still be a match for them. In his opinion there was no alternative to making preventive war in order to defeat the enemy while there was still a chance of victory.This book disabuses one of the notion that WWI, The Great War, arrived unexpectedly. There [...]


    2. “[T]here was no turning back. The nations were caught in a trap…a trap from which there was, and has been, no exit.”- Barbara Tuchman, The Guns of August“The lesson to be learned from the Great War, the world was told, is that governments must be careful not to lose control. They must not let confrontations inadvertently spill over into hostilities. They must not let small wars escalate into big wars. They must not let brushfires blaze into forest fires…These are good lessons to learn, [...]


    3. As we appoach the 100 year mark from the start of this war, a lot of Great War literature has appeared. I started Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War which is current and popular but got lost in the details and found this on a library shelf. I liked its layout. Simple short chapters taking items one issue at a time.While I don't know if historian, David Fromkin's theory of two wars is mainstream or not, the book has what you need to understand the causes. Fromkin starts by showing Europe at the [...]


    4. A well written book about the years leading up to the Great War. It is well researched and the author builds a good case that the war was not necessarily a result of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand at Sarajevo but instead, an accumulation of factors that had been building over several years.onomics, social unrest, colonialism, and militarism. Very well done and required reading for the scholar of turn of the 20th century European history.


    5. As the 100th anniversary of the Great War approaches, I thought I would test the waters and see what some recent historians had to say. In his highly informative, historical tome on the lead-up to the Great War, Fromkin not only dispels the simplistic view that the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand began a series of events that led to military action, but also seeks to propose that its start was anything but a total surprise to the European powers. Simplistic world history texts still present [...]


    6. One of the main props of Hitler's vitriolic propaganda was to condemn the Allies' position at Versailles that Germany should be the only nation to pay reparations since it was solely responsible for starting the First World War. Putting aside the problems caused by the reparations, which were substantial and in hindsight bad policy, there remains the issue of who started the war.Fromkin puts that responsibility squarely on Germany, which encouraged and manipulated the Austrian declaration of war [...]


    7. I took a class in college titled Europe: 1914-1945. The final exam was, "Choose one cause for World War I and defend your choice." I chose Russia's early mobilization. I got an A-. That was in 1995. Since that time, apparently, a veritable treasure trove of information has been discovered that really seems to clearly point to Germany wanted this war, created a scenario to have this war, and manipulated other nations into falling into it. I never think that anyone is pure evil, with the notable a [...]


    8. The Great War is the seminal event of our modern times and even though it's major reverberations damped down with the fall of Communism in the early 1990's, there is still the current Middle East that was partially made by the Great WarThis is the best book I've read o0n the origins and causes of the war since for once it takes into account new documents and on the other it is written very well and clearly explainedThe clear evidence that the elites in Germany wanted to defeat Russia "before it' [...]


    9. In David Fromkin’s most recent book he takes on the heavily written but still asked question of who started World War I. Fromkin attempts to redistribute the blame for the war, while Germany still receives some, a large amount is also placed on Austria-Hungary. Fromkin also claims that while the people of Europe believed that war was no longer a possibility, Europe’s political and military leaders could see the war coming. Much of Fromkin’s work focuses on the geopolitical machinations of [...]


    10. Written in spare, clear prose, Fromkin's book takes the form of a whodunit: who really started the First World War? Since WWI led to the Russian Revolution, the rise of fascism, World War Two, and the Cold War, and thereby shaped the entire 20th century, the question is neither pedantic nor frivolous. The author's answer stems from this clarification: World War One began was two wars, one launched by Austria against Serbia following Gavrilo Princip's moment of fame, the other initiated by Austri [...]


    11. Ever since reading Solzhenitsyn's "August 1914" I've been utterly fascinated by the lead-up to World War I. In this book Fromkin sets the stage for the war by showing how the Great Powers and the Central Powers began a then unprecedented arms race. The recently unified Germany became a threat to the other nations, and began expanding their empire abroad by gaining colonies. As the rivalry heated up, the move toward war became inevitable. The political and military elites knew war was coming.Aust [...]


    12. If you are looking for a book that explains why and how the First World War started, this is the one. The author introduces the situation in the preceding years and then focuses on the events during the "last summer" before the war started. The chapters are very short, which I found helpful for taking in the information in manageable chunks. With each new development the author explained the context of the event, which did mean quite a lot of repetition of information covered earlier, but this t [...]


    13. So Josh Marshall of talkingpointsmemo was going off a bit on twitter a while back about how discredited the whole The Guns of August "European war that nobody wanted" idea was. Feeling stupid, I asked him what book I should read if I'd only ever read Tuchman on WW1. He responded and recommended this book.I don't know Josh Marshall. He is a celebrity as far as I am concerned. So I had to read the book.The book is structured roughly as follows: first, it lays out the existing general view of the w [...]


    14. A rather exceptional book that tries and mostly succeeds at disproving the long running theory that the first world war was caused by an inevitable cascade of events and that the cause was that started the domino effect was the death of the heir to the Austrian-Hungarian throne. It theorized that in fact what we consider as WWI was in fact two wars that eventually combined after the failure of the Austrians. With this insight it allows the reasoning behind the cascade effect to dissolve and show [...]


    15. Fromkin makes an excellent attempt to understand how the Great War appeared out of the blue. He argues that Europe at that time was very tense and was not at all peaceful as public perception currently is. The military officers of all countries were busy preparing for a war on a massive scale - the question was not if, but when. According to the author, World War I consists of two wars - Austro-Serbian War, and the German War against France and Russia. The latter grew out of the former and swall [...]


    16. I picked this book up because as the centennial of the Great War approaches, I realized I knew little to nothing about what the war was about. It's embarrassing, as much as I love history, to not know the answer to a history question asked by one of my kids. (the little geniuses will likely keep me on my toes forever!) So, I grabbed this one in a moment of fancy at the library, because it was the thinnest book about the war that I could find, and appeared to focus on its origins rather than just [...]


    17. Excellent reading for the lay historian. I'm listening to it on Audible while I'm reading it and Alan Sklar has a voice that makes you forget it's non-fiction! Since I'm studying the Great War this year, this is a pretty good book to play in.Fromkin takes you step by step, detail by detail through the days between the assassination of the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne (Archduke Franz Ferdinand) and the declarations of war by the European powers. From relatively new research, Fromkin explai [...]


    18. Fromkin has a straightforward and easy-to-read style. This book is no exception. At the same time all the main characters are well developed, and what used to be total confusion in other books of WWI I've read, is crystal clear in his exposition. The main thesis is interesting and believable--two wars instead of one--although not at all definitive in my opinion. There is so much evidence that's still missing, that even filling the blanks (as Fromkin does) doesn't no provide a completely convinci [...]


    19. This is a comprehensive and methodical inquiry into the wide-ranging factors that led to the outbreak of the Great War in 1914. The author starts by reviewing what seems to be a random collection of events and personalities, and methodically demonstrates how these desperate threads slowly weave into a coherent whole. Most interesting is Fromkin's analysis of the interplay between erstwhile allies, who were often working at cross-purposes. Fromkin also makes clear that the drift to war was delibe [...]


    20. I'll be looking for this author's name again. I'm about half way through at this point but am really impressed. He makes history very readable. He mentions previous research and either backs it up with new information or explains how the new information contradicts the conclusions previously drawn. He goes into a bit more of the personal history of the historical figures mentioned, fleshes them out a bit, which makes them seem more like real people and makes it easier, for me at least, to relate [...]


    21. “It takes two or more to keep the peace, but only one to start a war,” David Fromkin, ‘Europe’s Last Summer’. This book is a must read for anyone interested in The Great War. The author, Mr Fromkin, delivers keen analysis delivered with an economy of script that is clean, crisp, concise, and clear enabling the reader not only to grasp the facts but fully to understand their impact and nuance. He presents the issues through the lens and in the context of that time thereby avoiding the m [...]


    22. The capsule summary for this book is spot on.I would just add that I have read at least 4 books about the Great War and this is the first one which I feel has given me a clear picture of how it really began, and why. Highly recommended (if you are interested in the topic).


    23. The reasons behind WWI read like an insane remake of Downton Abbey. This book does a great job detailing what everyone was thinking. On the downside, some of the book is an endless slog of "he said this, this other guy said that, etc".


    24. This is a good addition to the books about the Great War. Fromkin did a good job showing how peaceful Europe's "last summer" was and explaining how the war started in 1914 instead of 1908, 1910, or at a different time. It was easy to follow.


    25. They will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will no longer fight against nation, nor train for war anymore.‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭2:4‬ ‭NLT‬‬


    26. Kaiser Willie! How wrong we were! A regular peace-nik! It was going to happen-just when? Actually two wars. Austria-Hungary invades Slovenia, (rather tardily) & German invades Luxembourg.



    27. Author David Fromkin's approach to the origins of WWI eschews multifacted explanations of the war's genesis and endeavors to place the blame on specific individuals—primarily on German Chief of the General Staff Helmuth Moltke but to lesser extent Austrian CGS Franz Conrad von Hötzendorf. In Fromikn's telling, WWI was in reality two wars conflated together: Austria's war on Serbia and Germany's war on Russia (& France). In his telling, the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand gav [...]


    28. This book got worse with more post-reading reflection.I wanted to give this a fourth star, but just couldn't do it.Per some other reviewers, Fromkin's conclusions, other than the two-war idea, that Austria wanted war with just Serbia and Germany was willing to use the Austrian casus belli as a pre-emptive war igniter, are too pat.And, even that is not as proven as he claims. The Kaiser was not the only German, at least on the civilian side, who wanted Berchtold and Hötzendorf to attack Serbia A [...]


    29. Fascinating revisionist history, based on archival sources mostly not available to historians of a generation earlier; it largely overturns the thesis of an accidental war, of statesmen and military leaders "blundering into war", constrained by mobilization schedules.Germany and Austria both wanted war, though each wanted a different war, and each lied to its ally about what war it wanted, and how it wanted to involve the other. The German general staff knew that war would destroy European civil [...]


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