The Versailles Treaty and its Legacy: The Failure of the Wilsonian Vision

The Versailles Treaty and its Legacy: The Failure of the Wilsonian Vision

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Cambridge University Press


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The Versailles Treaty and its Legacy: The Failure of the Wilsonian Vision

This study, a realist interpretation of the long diplomatic record that produced the coming of World War II in 1939, is a critique of the Paris Peace Conference and reflects the judgment shared by many who left the Conference in 1919 in disgust amid predictions of future war. The critique is a rejection of the idea of collective security, which Woodrow Wilson and many others believed was a panacea, but which was also condemned as early as 1915. This book delivers a powerful lesson in treaty-making and rejects the supposition that treaties, once made, are unchangeable, whatever their faults.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781107647480
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 03/06/2014
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 286
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.63(d)

About the Author

Norman A. Graebner was the author, co-author, editor or co-editor of 26 books. He joined the University of Virginia faculty in 1967 as the Edward R. Stettinius Professor of Modern American History and, in 1982, became the Randolph P. Compton Professor. In 1978, he was Harmsworth Professor at Oxford University; he was also one of the founders and early presidents of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR). The New York Review of Books identified Graebner, along with Gaddis Smith at Yale, as a national leader in diplomatic history. Graebner served as an officer in the major national historical associations and he received the highest award to a civilian from the US Military Academy for a program he developed and led at West Point. He died in May 2010 at the age of 94.

Edward M. Bennett is Emeritus Professor of History at Washington State University. The recipient of several outstanding teaching awards, he has written, co-authored, edited or co-edited 10 books dealing with US foreign relations. He is a past member of the executive committee of the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association. He has been a member of the SHAFR Graebner Prize Committee, as well as its chair. He was also one of 10 American historians selected by the American Historical Association and the American Council of Learned Societies to participate in the colloquia authorized by Presidents Reagan and Gorbachev to assess the Soviet-American relationship in World War II.

Table of Contents

1. The international order on trial; 2. The road to Paris; 3. Versailles: a study in arrogance; 4. The retreat to utopia; 5. Manchuria and the triumph of non-recognition; 6. The rise of Hitler; 7. Challenge of the dictators; 8. The illusive response; 9. Munich: the continuing escape from reality; 10. The road to Prague; 11. The Soviet quest for collective security; 12. The coming of war.

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