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Hitler's New Disorder: The Second World War in Yugoslavia [Hardcover]

Stevan K. Pavlowitch
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Jan 2008
The history of the Second World War in Yugoslavia was for a long time the preserve of the Communist régime led by Marshal Tito. It was written by those who had battled hard to come out on top of the many-sided war fought across the territory of that Balkan state after the Axis Powers had destroyed it in 1941, just before Hitler s invasion of the USSR. It was an ideological and ethnic war under occupation by rival enemy powers and armies, between many insurgents, armed bands and militias, for the survival of one group, for the elimination of another, for belief in this or that ideology, for a return to an imagined past within the Nazi New Order, or for the reconstruction of a new Yugoslavia on the side of the Allies. In fact, many wars were fought alongside, and under cover of, the Great War waged by the Allies against Hitler s New Order which, in Yugoslavia at least, turned out to be a new disorder . Most surviving participants have since told their stories; most archival sources are now available. Pavlowitch uses them, as well as the works of historians in several languages, to understand what actually happened on the ground. He poses more questions than he provides answers, as he attempts a synoptic and chronological analysis of the confused yet interrelated struggles fought in 1941-5, during the short but tragic period of Hitler s failed New Order , over the territory that was no longer the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and not yet the Federal Peoples Republic of Yugoslavia, but that is now definitely former Yugoslavia .

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: C. Hurst & Co (1 Jan 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1850658951
  • ISBN-13: 978-1850658955
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 21.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 425,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'This book is clearly the work of a senior scholar well-versed in the controversies over Yugoslavia in the twentieth century. Throughout the book, Pavlowitch demonstrates sovereign control over the complexities of wartime Yugoslavia. He generally shows empathy for the various personalities involved in wartime Yugoslavia and in this avoids the rather judgmental stances that creep into most books on the subject.' --Journal of Contemporary History

'Pavlowitch says in the Foreword that this book is the product of 40 years of contemplating the Second World War in Yugoslavia. He is to be commended for rising above ideological and nationalistic narratives. By itself, this represents a significant step forward. Combined with Pavlowitch's adroit stitching together of complex and conflicting national histories, the end result is a book that will be a valuable resource for students and scholars of Yugoslav history.' --European Historical Quarterly

'One of the most distinguished historians of the former Yugoslavia who has always combined impeccable scholarship with the benefit of distance having lived much of his adult life in Britain. His books are always beautifully written and crisp.' --Tim Judah, Balkan Insight

About the Author

Stevan Pavlowitch, the doyen of Balkan historians, is Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Southampton and the author of three books published by Hurst, including Serbia: The History Behind the Name and Tito: Yugoslavia's Great Dictator.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Chaos of War 15 Jan 2014
As time passes it becomes to easier to perceive at just how many different levels and sub strata the Second World War was fought. The German invasion of Yugoslavia in 1941 was a swift and uncomplicated conquest but it spawned a ferocious and complex civil war the consequences of which are still playing out to-day. In simplistic terms the protagonists were pro and anti axis but the internal conflicts were often more important than the nominal external allegiances of the parties involved. During Tito's long reign over Yugoslavia the myth of the heroic partisans standing alone against the Nazis, the Italians the Croat and Serb fascists and their Chetnik stooges reigned pretty much unchallenged, even in the West. Since the breakup of Yugoslavia a more nuanced picture has emerged, of which this Book is a reflection. The truth is that every party involved in the conflict had their agenda in pursuit of which they might fight or collaborate with any of the others. The advantage the partisans had was that they were well led, had a clear goal, enjoyed Soviet support throughout and were completely ruthless in pursuit of their objectives. The interest of the occupying Germans and Italians waxed and waned depending on other considerations but at no time were they able or willing to put in the level of resources that would have been necessary to effectively counter indigenous resistance. Equally for the Western allies Yugoslavia was always a sideshow. They wanted to keep the pot boiling to try and divert German resources away from more important fronts but never had any intention of invading. Read more ›
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yugoslavia in WWII 19 May 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a very good book on a complex, controversial and difficult subject. The writer manages calmly and without polemics or detailed accounts of atrocities,to cover the War years in "Independent" Croatia, occupied Serbia and annexed (to different countries)Kosovo,Macedonia,Slovenia and the Dalmatian coast. Of course it was a dreadful time and certainly had an effect on what happened after Tito's death. There is no nonsense in the book of making any equivalence between Ustacha atrocities and the occasional violence of the Chetniks. Poor exiled King Peter comes out very sympatheitically (even his London wedding was ruined by anti-Orthodox sentiment). All in all it is a well-written an fair account.
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