The Rape of Belgium: The Untold Story of World War I

The Rape of Belgium: The Untold Story of World War I

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by Larry Zuckerman
     
 

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The author presents a compelling and untold story of Germany's occupation of Belgium after WW1. It's a great, trade history book from a wonderful storyteller.See more details below

Overview

The author presents a compelling and untold story of Germany's occupation of Belgium after WW1. It's a great, trade history book from a wonderful storyteller.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Zuckerman argues that the atrocity stories about Germany's "rape of Belgium," which were so widely reported and discredited, have in fact distracted from telling the history of Belgian life under German occupation during World War I. Zuckerman, an independent scholar, begins his account with a discussion of the German decision to violate Belgian neutrality, a choice that violated international law and ensured Britain's entering the conflagration. Zuckerman goes on to juxtapose the genesis and propagation of the image of the "rape of Belgium" with the reality of events on the ground. His analysis of German attacks on Belgian civilians follows the story told in John N. Horne and Alan Kramer's German Atrocities 1914: History of a Denial. Zuckerman's strengths are his detailed analysis of the tribulations of Belgian civilians forced to endure mass expropriations, arbitrary and administratively chaotic occupation, and chronic hunger. That thousands of Belgian civilians were sent to Germany as forced labor might be regarded as a premonition of the next war. Zuckerman is weaker in placing German policy toward Belgium into comparative perspective, a perspective that could only strengthen an already solid book. A welcome addition to the literature, this is recommended for all history collections.-Frederic Krome, Jacob Rader Marcus Ctr. of the American Jewish Archives, Cincinnati Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher

"Zuckerman has mined Belgium's archives to depict a German occupation that presaged the Nazi era. He illustrates how the falsity of the most lurid atrocity accounts rendered public opinion dubious or indifferent to the real "rape of Belgium," and thus allowed Germany to escape accountability for its crimes."

-CHOICE

"A lively and lucid synthesis. Larry Zuckerman's intelligent, well-documented, and eminently readable account of Belgium s maltreatment during World War I highlights war crimes too often dismissed as figments of propaganda. This book deserves to be read very widely indeed.”

-Sophie De Schaepdrijver,Pennsylvania State University

"Zuckerman has given a clear and informative account of the ways in which the occupation of Belgium had a significance transcending the borders of one small European country. That is a major achievement."

-H-Net Book Review

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814797396
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
02/01/2004
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
339
Sales rank:
1,298,783
File size:
4 MB

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher

"More than a footnote to history, The Rape of Belgium makes us look afresh at the story of German behavior in occupied Belgium during World War I. We can no longer dismiss the stories-the killing of innocent civilians, the burning of priceless libraries, the plundering of Belgian resources, and the forced deportations of thousands of Belgians to work in Germany-as simply Allied propaganda. Larry Zuckerman argues with passion and meticulous research that both the Allies and the Germans themselves failed to confront the crucial legal and moral questions raised by the occupation."

-Margaret MacMillan,author of Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World

"A lively and lucid synthesis. Larry Zuckerman's intelligent, well-documented, and eminently readable account of Belgium s maltreatment during World War I highlights war crimes too often dismissed as figments of propaganda. This book deserves to be read very widely indeed."

-Sophie De Schaepdrijver,Pennsylvania State University

"Belgium's occupation by the Imperial German army between 1914 and 1918, Larry Zuckerman's important new book shows, provided a blueprint for the Nazi occupation of Europe 25 years later. With compelling evidence and compassion, he has drawn our attention back to a moment when total war began, and when everybody came to see that when military hostilities begin, no one-man, woman or child-is safe. Modern war and atrocity are now interchangeable terms; as this book demonstrates, they became inextricably tied together in Belgium a century ago, and the world has never been the same again."

-Jay Winter,Yale University

"Zuckerman has given a clear and informative account of the ways in which the occupation of Belgium had a significance transcending the borders of one small European country. That is a major achievement."

-H-Net Book Review,

"Zuckerman has mined Belgium's archives to depict a German occupation that presaged the Nazi era. He illustrates how the falsity of the most lurid atrocity accounts rendered public opinion dubious or indifferent to the real "rape of Belgium," and thus allowed Germany to escape accountability for its crimes."

-CHOICE

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