The Origins of the First World War

Overview

James Joll's study is not simply another narrative, retracing the powder trail that was finally ignited at Sarajevo. It is an ambitious and wide-ranging analysis of the historical forces at work in the Europe of 1914, and the very different ways in which historians have subsequently attempted to understand them. The importance of the theme, the breadth and sympathy of James Joll's scholarship, and the clarity of his exposition, have all contributed to the spectacular success of ...

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The Origins of the First World War

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Overview

James Joll's study is not simply another narrative, retracing the powder trail that was finally ignited at Sarajevo. It is an ambitious and wide-ranging analysis of the historical forces at work in the Europe of 1914, and the very different ways in which historians have subsequently attempted to understand them. The importance of the theme, the breadth and sympathy of James Joll's scholarship, and the clarity of his exposition, have all contributed to the spectacular success of the book since its first appearance in 1984.

Revised by Gordon Martel, this new 3rd edition accommodates recent research and an expanded further reading section.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Joll's (emeritus, U. of London) acclaimed narrative, first published in 1984, and now revised and updated to reflect the latest research, is a wide-ranging analysis of the historical forces at work in the Europe of 1914, and the very different ways historians have subsequently attempted to understand them. This title initiates a major new Longman series. Printed on acidic paper. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
From the Publisher

‘Gordon Martel has done the impossible: he has made James Joll’s The Origins of the First World War once more the premier study on why war came in 1914…Martel has not simply updated Joll’s contribution but enhanced and improved it… A triumph of both scholarship and editorial talent; James Joll would have been pleased.’

Samuel R. Williamson Jr., University of the South.

‘Probably the best comprehensive history of the origins of World War I available in the English language… Gordon Martel’s [revision] will make certain that the book's deep insights will continue to captivate and inspire future generations of students and others interested in…the Great War.’

Volker Berghahn, ColumbiaUniversity.

Of the Second Edition:

'This succinct and, above all, admirably clear volume...will be essential reading for all students of the subject… It is written with lightness of touch and an eye for the telling anecdote that will commend it to the general reader too.'

British Book News

‘...this scholarly, comprehensive and subtle analysis should be made compulsory reading for all students of the period and, most of all, for the decision-makers of today.’

John F V Keiger, History

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Product Details

Meet the Author

The late James Joll was Emeritus Professor of the University of London and a Fellow of the British Academy.

Gordon Martel is Professor of History at the University of Northern British Columbia. He is a leading historian of war and empire in the modern world.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. The July Crisis, 1914

3. The Alliance System and the Old Diplomacy

4. Militarism, Armaments and Strategy

5. The Primacy of Domestic Politics

6. The International Economu

7. Imperial Rivalries

8. The Mood of 1914

9. Conclusion

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