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The Story of World War I (Illustrated)

The Story of World War I (Illustrated) [Kindle Edition]

Roland Usher
2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

A brief introduction to World War I, otherwise known as the Great War, a mindless conflict that erupted across the Earth from 1914-1918, and transformed a great swatch of European countryside into a human slaughterhouse.

"I hope that this volume may serve the purpose for some at least of those who have neither the time nor the inclination to read more detailed accounts, and who are not among those hypercritical gentry who will reject all present attempts as unscientific and necessarily unsuccessful. I have tried to make text, maps, and illustrations tell their lesson at a glance, to make that glance reveal something important and interpretative, to pack into these few pages the gist of the view about the war which has cost me much time and effort and which would be the core of any account I might write, however lengthy and technical. To say so much so briefly meant inevitably the possibility that some portion might not be clear and that other parts might be misunderstood. The narrative had to be reduced rigidly and much material often included in brief texts had to be left out in order that the interpretative material might find place. There was danger that the latter might fail to carry conviction without a greater area of facts about events and people. Such a decision meant in particular the complete subordination of the process by which I achieved my conclusions and the omission of the whole panoply of qualifications so dear to the professional historian. But I felt the gain more than commensurate" - Roland Usher

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 6190 KB
  • Print Length: 306 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Didactic Press (6 May 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #199,288 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars weird WW1 7 Feb 2014
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I got mine as a free download, and I'm afraid that's about it's worth. It's a very simplistic view of WW1 written from a non-European cultural perspective. It's a short text so I wasn't expecting huge detail, but I was expecting an objective study of the topic from an informed author. There are huge interpretive distortions here, and the author clearly cannot imagine that anyone without US cultural references and associated bias could be reading the text. Writing style is more magazine than I would wish. If you are looking for a good general introductory text for WW1, then AJP Taylor is still the one to get. For more detailed reads, then Lyn Macdonald has a good spread of titles, and is a bloody good read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointingly biased 6 Feb 2014
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I hope this book isn't available in Germany - it's likely t cause a diplomatic incident. This is bad history - circulation should be strictly controlled to US only. It appears that it isn't only in WWII that the US have a blinkered view of.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.4 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Buyer Beware 31 Jan 2014
By Paul & Sarah Hinds - Published on
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The title of this review is to caution against taking the book's title at face value. The title would suggest that this work is post-WWII but it is not. There is no preface or editorial comments to let the reader know the actual date this was written but it was a work produced by Roland G. Usher an associate professor of history at Washington University in St. Louis who had beaten the drum against German Aggression in his 1913 work on Pan-Germanism.

Thus there are some very interesting viewpoints, some suppositions given as fact that are unsupportable by modern scholarship (e.g. Imperial Germany spent 40 years preparing for a war against Great Britain). Any knowledge of Bismark's deplomancy and the assiduousiness that Prussia worked to keep England as an ally until the unfortunate seating of William II as Kaiser is lost in the dogmatic post-war propaganda.

The devotion of the German army to total war is highlighted and while the actions and barbarities of that army are well documented this work does cast those actions without any editing to separate fact from fiction.

The work also gives an enhanced view of the French Army command, does not recognize that Great Britain had a serious rupture with the French in 1914 because of the French misunderstanding the nature of the pre-war agreement. The author seems to accept the French view of a pre-war alliance and project it on the British.

There is a general depiction of the 1914 action in France, short chapters on 1915, Gallipoli and Balkans and the Italian campaign. The work does not give either a balanced account of the military actions, the political actions nor any reasoned analysis of how events unfolded. The view is always that sympathic with the Allied Commander and his army and fails in giving any insight on where things went wrong. The depiction of the Russian Revolutions (May and October) is muddled and ends before the Russian Civil War really begain.

Overall, this work is of interest for the heavy and uncritical depiction of the Allied victory in France during the first world war but suffers heavily from the lack of a modern editor who could have updated and corrected many of it's errors and fanciful flights. Since this is a $0.0 kindle edition one has no complaints about getting one's money value. If you already have a sound grounding in the political and military events of WWI then it is interesting reading for the point mentioned above but is not the work for someone who wishes to learn more of the intrigues and military convolutions that was WWI.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor history, of interest only as a partisan view of the war by one of the recent victors. 18 Jun 2014
By berthier - Published on
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Within two pages of commencing reading you should be able to tell the book was written long ago and from a partisan view with no insight into the real interactions and motivations of the government and peoples of the era. Stridently anti-German, errors abound throughout the book, as an example, the fighting is said to have been started by the German invasion of Belgium when in fact it had commenced with the rejection of the Austrian ultimatum to Serbia and the cascading of declarations of war caused by alliance obligations. Germany actually invaded Luxembourg five days after the Australia-Hungarian declaration of war on Serbia.

I stopped reading after thirty pages, the content so one sided, so superior on the one hand and derogatory on the other to be very annoying. If you want to know about WW1 this isn't a book to extend your knowledge. The only value I see in it is as an insight into some of the immediate post war delusional thinking of the victors, much as the "stab in the back" theory served the delusions of the post war Germany.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for its time 17 Feb 2014
By bjw - Published on
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This was written shortly after the war and with a little bit more of cheer leading than seen in newer books. The author saw ww1 as a plan half a century in making by the Germans. Overall it was well written and any flaws in my opinion must be taken in context to the period the book was written.
5.0 out of 5 stars Shining a brighter light 1 Feb 2014
By Mern - Published on
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Mr. Usher takes the Great War and delves into the real causes of the German's bid for world dominance. Excellent writing. I would recommend this book for all who want to know more than they learned from their high school history teachers.
5.0 out of 5 stars A book I'll read several times! 18 Aug 2014
By Charles Hellebusch - Published on
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I received a great education on the war. A book that held my interest during the whole read.
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