The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke

The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke

2.0 1
by Timothy Snyder
     
 

ISBN-10: 0465018971

ISBN-13: 9780465018970

Pub. Date: 09/28/2010

Publisher: Basic Books


Wilhelm Von Habsburg wore the uniform of the Austrian officer, the court regalia of a Habsburg archduke, the simple suit of a Parisian exile, the collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece, and, every so often, a dress. He could handle a saber, a pistol, a rudder, or a golf club; he handled women by necessity and men for pleasure. He spoke the Italian of his…  See more details below

Overview


Wilhelm Von Habsburg wore the uniform of the Austrian officer, the court regalia of a Habsburg archduke, the simple suit of a Parisian exile, the collar of the Order of the Golden Fleece, and, every so often, a dress. He could handle a saber, a pistol, a rudder, or a golf club; he handled women by necessity and men for pleasure. He spoke the Italian of his archduchess mother, the German of his archduke father, the English of his British royal friends, the Polish of the country his father wished to rule, and the Ukrainian of the land Wilhelm wished to rule himself. In this exhilarating narrative history, prize-winning historian Timothy D. Snyder offers an indelible portrait of an aristocrat whose life personifies the wrenching upheavals of the first half of the twentieth century, as the rule of empire gave way to the new politics of nationalism. Coming of age during the First World War, Wilhelm repudiated his family to fight alongside Ukrainian peasants in hopes that he would become their king. When this dream collapsed he became, by turns, an ally of German imperialists, a notorious French lover, an angry Austrian monarchist, a calm opponent of Hitler, and a British spy against Stalin. Played out in Europe’s glittering capitals and bloody battlefields, in extravagant ski resorts and dank prison cells, The Red Prince captures an extraordinary moment in the history of Europe, in which the old order of the past was giving way to an undefined future-and in which everything, including identity itself, seemed up for grabs.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780465018970
Publisher:
Basic Books
Publication date:
09/28/2010
Edition description:
First Trade Paper Edition
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
519,242
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Gold: The Emperor's Dream 7

Blue: Childhood at Sea 29

Green: Oriental Europe 51

Red: Prince at Arms 77

Grey: Shadow Kings 99

White: Agent of Imperialism 121

Lilac: Gay Paris 149

Brown: Aristocratic Fascism 183

Black: Against Hitler and Stalin 205

Orange: European Revolutions 239

Epilogue 269

Acknowledgments 275

Family Trees 277

Biographical Sketches 281

Chronology of Habsburg History 289

Note on Terms and Languages 293

Notes 297

Bibliography 321

Index 333

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The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke 2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm not a PhD Historian. As a Professor of History at Yale, the author undoubtedly is. I chose this book because I want to learn more history and I love biographies. I thought this was going to be a biography of "The Red Prince." The book is misnamed. There is considerably more history in the book than biography. I can't think of a good name for it, but the name was very misleading. "The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke" creates an expectation that this person lived two lives - a public life and a secret life and that the secret life was going to be compelling and interesting and make up a good portion of the book. Again, it may be compelling for a PhD Historian. There is very little in the book to excite feeling for the "Red Prince." Usually, in a biography, there should be some sympathy, empathy, or something that grabs the reader fairly soon that makes you either like the person or at least want to read more about him and discover what those "secrets" are. What few secrets there were (perhaps two - an allusion to that he was gay or bisexual, and also a spy for a time) left me sleeping. I was left with little feeling for the guy and throughout, I didn't feel like I really got to know him. The title is very misleading. Had the book been named correctly, I would not have chosen it and would have left it to those persons interested in the true subject of the book - the Habsburgs, European development in the late 1800's and the 1900's, with particular attention to Ukraine, Poland, Austria, Germany. I wanted a little more juicy stuff, written in a slightly more "popular" vein.That being said, the book did expose me to some history, and with more reading about similar subjects, I may be able to relate to the subject-matter better. I give it a 2 because of the misleading title and picture, and because it didn't satisfy my thirst. I resent that someone came up with the title and the picture to sell the book, and those were the things that sold me the book (plus the author's credentials and the editorial reviews), but that the book did not deliver on the promise. Too many people, too many countries, without bringing the reader back to Wilhelm or showing a relationship to Wilhelm very often. I kept asking, "How does this relate to Wilhelm?"