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History of Germany, 1780-1918: The Long Nineteenth Century (Blackwell Classic Histories of Europe) Paperback – 2 Aug 2002


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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 2nd Edition edition (2 Aug 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 063123196X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0631231967
  • Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 2 x 23 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 341,486 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

‘David Blackbourn is one of the brightest of a younger generation of Anglo–American scholars whose work has transformed the historiography of modern Germany over the past two decades.′ Times Higher Education Supplement <!––end––> ‘Here is contemporary historical scholarship at its best. Witty, modest about historical generalizations, but ever willing to introduce revisionism, Blackbourn demonstrates how to write thought–provoking and persuasive prose.′ German Studies Review ‘It is elegant, thought–provoking, informative and entertaining, summarizing a formidable body of literature and offering new interpretations of it. Everyone, from undergraduates to experts in the field, and beyond the walls of academia to the educated general reader . . . can read [this book] with profit and pleasure.′ Central European History

From the Back Cover

In the late eighteenth century, German–speaking Europe was a patchwork of principalities. Yet by the early twentieth century, unified Germany had become the most powerful state in Europe. David Blackbourn tells the story of this transformation with eloquence, authority and wit, weaving together political, social, and cultural history. This is a book about revolution, nationalism and the growing role of the state. It also explores subjects that range from religion to racism, and Mozart to medicine. The result is a powerful and original account of Germany from the eve of the French Revolution to the end of World War One. This highly praised book is now available in a new edition with an updated bibliography.

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Asked what the effect of the French Revolution had been, the Chinese Communist leader Chou En-lai supposedly replied: 'It's too soon to say.' Read the first page
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Dave Edmondson on 23 Jan 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a book that kept me wanting to read more; to get through the book it needed to because it isn't easy. This book more than most will receive reviews which vary with the reader, two aspects of the reader: their reason for reading it, and therefore what they want to get out of it, and secondly their ability to understand and retain what they read. The reasons why it is potentially a tough read are as follows, and the reader needs to measure themselves off against them. Some of the reasons are down to the author, some down to the subject, and some are dependant on what the reader brings to the text, that is its style and subject. Firstly, it is an academic book, written by an (English?) Professor of History at Harvard. This is a mixed blessing, on the one hand it is based on facts extensively brought together and analytically weighed for conclusions. On the other hand, as I have done in these two sentences, virtually all topics have opposing facts weighed off in the balance, to the extent that it can be difficult to lock into the memory which way the balance tipped. This academic style of writing, often offset by (almost) witty humour, is the author's choice and is good. Less good is his choice of many abstruse English words, words I not only don't know the meaning of but have never seen before (I accept the need for some German words requiring to be looked up). The author is to be congratulated on covering history in all its aspects, especially how it affected people's everyday lives. The second area of difficulty is in the subject. Germany for most of the period covered did not exist, and when it did was not an homogenous identity, so every topic gives the picture for Prussian, then Austrian,... Catholics, Protestants,... rural, urban, etc. and they are different.Read more ›
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Brian Griffith on 14 Jan 2008
Format: Paperback
A tremendously competent piece of research, which portrays and measures wave after wave of social change. For example Blackbourn shows the rise of women in public service vocations, which quickly surpassed the numbers of clergymen or members of religious orders. By the 1880s and 90s their efforts generated whole new industries in previously unvalued "welfare" work -- mother and child welfare, campaigns to eradicate tuberculosis and venereal disease, to raise awareness about nutrition or implement standards for sanitation and housing. In Germany, Fürsorge (welfare) became a catchword for a hundred newly popular initiatives to "improve" people's lives and relations.

Blackbourn captures the kinds of news that mattered more than the same old political and military contests.

--author of Correcting Jesus: 2000 Years of Changing the Story
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Splendid job, without a doubt. Not only as a consequence of the thorough knowledge and erudite character of the writer, but even more so because of the vision and analysis of historical time frames. Definitive read.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Constable Elbow on 25 Nov 2012
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Haven't finished this yet but so far it's been exactly what I was looking for - clear, informative and thought-provoking.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
A wonderful read for amateur history buffs as well as academics 19 Jun 2010
By Thomas J. Cuddihy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The twentieth-century history of Germany is well known by casual readers of history--but how did that very important nation come into existence? David Blackbourn's History of Germany, 1780-1918 answers that question dramatically and with eloquence. His book was written for serious students and, I'd assume, fellow academics, but Blackbourn employs a wonderful narrative sweep that will also grab the interest of non-specialists like me. It's all here--the separate Germanic kingdoms and their very different responses to decades of revolution that erupted largely from out of neighboring France between the 1780s and 1848, the formation and expansion of a modern unified nation during the time of Bismarck, events leading to World War I, the disorder that followed the war, the Hohenzollern dynasty's fall, and the founding of the ill-fated Weimar Republic. There is plenty of rich social and cultural history here, too--the rise of Berlin and Germany's other major cities, as well as the importance of the German industrialists, artists, philosophers, and composers who have left their mark on all of Western civilization. David Blackbourn brings this big story vividly to life in a book that both academics and amateur history buffs can enjoy.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
The news that really mattered for a change 14 Jan 2008
By Brian Griffith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
A tremendously competent piece of research, which portrays and measures wave after wave of social change. For example Blackbourn shows the rise of women in public service vocations, which quickly surpassed the numbers of clergymen or members of religious orders. By the 1880s and 90s their efforts generated whole new industries in previously unvalued "welfare" work -- mother and child welfare, campaigns to eradicate tuberculosis and venereal disease, to raise awareness about nutrition or implement standards for sanitation and housing. In Germany, Fürsorge (welfare) became a catchword for a hundred newly popular initiatives to "improve" people's lives and relations.

Blackbourn captures the kinds of news that mattered more than the same old political and military contests.
Historyof Germany 1780-1918 is a detailed history of the German Reich from the Napoleonic era to the end of World War I 12 Aug 2014
By C. M Mills - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
History of Germany 1780-1918 is a serious textbook which is not the kind of book you cuddle in your arms as you cozy up to a fireplace on a sleepy Saturday afternoon. The book is written in a dry, arcane and academic style which will turn off many readers. Many pages are devoted to such topics as":
a. The economic development of Germany from an agricultural to a strong industrial economy
b. The emergence of Prussia as the leading German province leading to the unification of the nation in 1871 following the victory over France at the Battle of Sedan.
c. Social trends are detailed as Germany moves to a sophisticated modern state.
d. The rise of Prussian militarism is detailed as Bismarck the Iron Chancellor makes Germany a nation to be reckoned with in the world economy and arms race.
e. We see the rise of industrialism and the growth of large industries in coal, steel and iron manufacture.
f. The rise of anti-Semitism, imperialism and racism are chronicled.
g. Religion is important in this period with Catholic-Protestant hostility seen as well as religion conflicts with the government. The rise of modern biblical scholarship begins in the German universities.
h. Cities increase in population as problems with the slums and crime become major concerns.
The overwhelming defeat in World War I left German in a parlous state as starvation, inflation and hatred of the Jews is manifested. Germany became ground ripe for the sowing of hatred by Hitler and his Nazi thugs.
This book by Dr. David Blackbourn is not a fun read but it is one of the best books ever written on pre-World War I Germany.
Europe's German Century 18 Nov 2014
By Richard P. Deranian - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When one finds a historian who can write well, that is, weave a understandable story true to events, then it is incumbent to let others know. To understand World War I one needs to know the history of the long century (1780 - 1918) in Germany. I recommend David Blackbourn's masterful telling without reservation. One problem I had prior to reading this book was the role Germany accepted vis a vis the Austrian-Hungarian Empire prior to the events in August, 1914.

High marks for the author, the press and the editors.
1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Very interesting 26 May 2014
By maureen j olson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Again, another outstanding book on the history of Germany for history enthusiasts. Everyone should read it. Go go go go.
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