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The Sleepwalkers : How Europe Went To War In 1914 - Christopher Clark

The Sleepwalkers

How Europe Went To War In 1914

Paperback Published: 4th July 2013
ISBN: 9780141027821
Number Of Pages: 736

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The moments that it took Gavrilo Princip to step forward to the stalled car and shoot dead Franz Ferdinand and his wife were perhaps the most fateful of the modern era. An act of terrorism of staggering efficiency, it fulfilled its every aim- it would liberate Bosnia from Habsburg rule and it created a powerful new Serbia, but it also brought down four great empires, killed millions of men and destroyed a civilization. What made a seemingly prosperous and complacent Europe so vulnerable to the impact of this assassination? In The Sleepwalkers Christopher Clark retells the story of the outbreak of the First World War and its causes. Above all, it shows how the failure to understand the seriousness of the chaotic, near genocidal fighting in the Balkans would drag Europe into catastrophe. 'A masterpiece.' Harold Evans, The New York Times Book Review 'The best book I have read this year, or indeed for several years.' Simon Heffer, New Statesman, Book of the Year 'It is hard to believe we will ever see a better narrative of what was perhaps the biggest collective blunder in the history of international relations.' Niall Ferguson 'The arguments Clark sets out in this quite superb account of the causes of the First World War are so compelling that they effectively consign the old historical consensus to the bin . . . A masterpiece. It's not often that one has the privilege of reading a book that reforges our understanding of one of the seminal events of world history.' Simon Griffith, Daily Mail 'There will be many books on the first world war as the 100th anniversary draws near, but few as illuminating as this one.' Tony Barber, Financial Times, Books of the Year 'Impeccably researched, provocatively argued and elegantly written . . . for Clark, the statesmen of 1914 were 'sleepwalkers, watchful but unseeing, haunted by dreams, yet blind to the reality of the horror they were about to bring into the world'.' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times, Books of the Year 'Brilliant . . . Clark changes the balance between the great power dissension and the disputes on Europe's fault line, the Balkans, by placing them centre stage.' The Times Higher Education

Industry Reviews

Formidable ... one of the most impressive and stimulating studies of the period ever published -- Max Hastings * Sunday Times *
Easily the best book ever written on the subject ... A work of rare beauty that combines meticulous research with sensitive analysis and elegant prose. The enormous weight of its quality inspires amazement and awe ... Academics should take note: Good history can still be a good story * Washington Post *
A lovingly researched work of the highest scholarship. It is hard to believe we will ever see a better narrative of what was perhaps the biggest collective blunder in the history of international relations -- Niall Ferguson
[Reading The Sleepwalkers], it is as if a light had been turned on a half-darkened stage of shadowy characters cursing among themselves without reason ... [Clark] demolishes the standard view ... The brilliance of Clark's far-reaching history is that we are able to discern how the past was genuinely prologue ... In conception, steely scholarship and piercing insights, his book is a masterpiece -- Harold Evans * New York Times Book Review *
Impeccably researched, provocatively argued and elegantly written ... a model of scholarship * Sunday Times Books of the Year *
Superb ... effectively consigns the old historical consensus to the bin ... It's not often that one has the privilege of reading a book that reforges our understanding of one of the seminal events of world history * Mail Online *
A monumental new volume ... Revelatory, even revolutionary ... Clark has done a masterful job explaining the inexplicable * Boston Globe *
Superb ... One of the great mysteries of history is how Europe's great powers could have stumbled into World War I ... This is the single best book I have read on this important topic -- Fareed Zakaria
A meticulously researched, superbly organized, and handsomely written account * Military History *
Clark is a masterly historian ... His account vividly reconstructs key decision points while deftly sketching the context driving them ... A magisterial work * Wall Street Journal *
This compelling examination of the causes of World War I deserves to become the new standard one-volume account of that contentious subject * Foreign Affairs *
A brilliant contribution * Times Higher Education *
Clark is fully alive to the challenges of the subject ... He provides vivid portraits of leading figures ... [He] also gives a rich sense of what contemporaries believed was at stake in the crises leading up to the war * Irish Times *
In recent decades, many analysts had tended to put most blame for the disaster [of the First World War] on Germany. Clark strongly renews an older interpretation which sees the statesmen of many countries as blundering blindly together into war -- Stephen Howe * Independent BOOKS OF THE YEAR *

ISBN: 9780141027821
ISBN-10: 0141027827
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 736
Published: 4th July 2013
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 12.9  x 4.4
Weight (kg): 0.53
Edition Number: 1

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