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The First World War: Germany and Austria-Hungary 1914-1918 (Modern Wars) Paperback – 24 Apr 2014

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic; 2nd edition edition (24 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1472511247
  • ISBN-13: 978-1472511249
  • Product Dimensions: 15 x 2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 694,378 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

Holger Herwig s deft handling of sources and elegant writing bring the complexities of the Central Powers to life for his readers. In doing so, he provides the best analysis of Germany and Austria-Hungary available anywhere. His work also allows us to see the war efforts of the Allies in sharper perspective. This new edition, like the first, is a masterful book that should be on the shelf of every student of the First World War. --Michael Neiberg, author of Dance of the Furies: Europe and the Outbreak of World War I (2011)

Professor Herwig's study of Germany and Austria-Hungary in World War I has long been recognized as the best book in any language on the subject. By revising and updating his original work he has ensured his book will remain indispensable to anyone seeking to understand the actions and experiences of those two powers in the war. --Robert Doughty, retired Professor of History, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, USA

About the Author

Holger H. Herwig is Professor of History at the University of Calgary, Canada.


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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Professor Herwig's study of Germany and Austria-Hungary in World War I has long been recognized as the best book in any language on the subject, by revising and updating his original work he has ensured that his book will remain indispensable to anyone seeking to understand the actions and the experiences of those two powers in the war.
Indeed, this book is the last edition of a book first published on 1997, that has remained unmatched since then, this new edition includes new material on the domestic front, covering Austria-Hungary's internal political frictions and ethnic fissures and more on Austria-Hungary and Germany's position within the wider geopolitical framework.
This book begins examining how every power got involved in the war, and which war plan was prepared by them. The book , then follows the development of the conflict, with special attention to the main battles: Tannenberg, the Marne, Gallipoli, Western Front on 1915, Verdun, the Somme, Lutsk, Romania, U-boot warfare, the Nivelle Offensive, Caporetto, Operation Michael.
Three chapters of this wonderful book are dedicated to examine the effects of the total war imposed to the Central Powers .
The book is full of first hand accounts and of detailed maps; no important aspect of this terrible war is missing.
As the famous historian Hew Strachan says : " If you read one book in order to learn about the performance of the Central Powers in the war, this is it" !
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The first edition of this book established itself as the best work on its subject, this second edition incorporates some new material but essential it is a case of making an already great book better rather than a reworking. The book gives much attention to the role of Austria-Hungary, this is an element of first world war history which is generally overlooked yet Austria-Hungary was probably the singularly most crucial factor in a political assassination escalating into a general European war.
The reluctance to consider the possibility that Austria-Hungary carried a high degree of responsibility for the first world war in so much history (for example a recent BBC production aiming to provide a dramatic reconstruction of the weeks leading into war all but ignored the role of Vienna and what attention was given to Austria-Hungary was limited to portraying foppish and ineffectual ambassadors) is somewhat baffling. Even more baffling is that insofar as historians do comment on Austria-Hungary it has often been to venerate Conrad as a strategic genius commanding troops not worthy of his greatness. Herwig shows what a bellicose individual Conrad was, his desire for war was more pronounced than Moltke. The bungling of Austro-Hungarian mobilisation, the division of an already numerically and qualitatively inadequate army between a Serbian offensive and an offensive against Russia was catastrophic. The Austro-Hungarian army has had a rather negative press and it is true that as the war progressed it became ever more of a burden for Germany to support their ally however in the opening months of the war the army suffered horrific casualties and the multi-national army maintained high standards of loyalty and a willingness to fight.
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By John Ferngrove TOP 500 REVIEWER on 19 Dec. 2015
Format: Paperback
If you have read one or more of the excellent recent histories of WWI by British authors such as those by Stevenson 1914-1918: The History of the First World War, Beckett The Great War: 1914-1918 (magisterial) or Gilbert The First World War then this is the book to go to for the view from the Central Powers, which is a somewhat different perspective. This is a book of politics and grand strategy (or as often, its absence) rather than the soldiers eye view in the trenches, but one learns much that doesn't come across in the typical allied accounts. Most particularly is just how much worse the suffering on the home front was than for the allies. It is a staple that Allied soldiers home on leave could not communicate the horror of the trenches to the civilians at home, but post 1916 most civilians were dealing with the horrors of near starvation for much of the time, first in Austro-Hungary and then in Germany. One discovers how very disorganised the Central Power's management of the war was from an economic and industrial point of view, compared to the more streamlined production systems of the allies, due to their relative political fragmentation; Austria-Hungary because of its competing ethnicities, and in Germany due to the tension between miltary and civilian government. If the allies were led by donkeys then the Central Powers were led to a large extent by osteriches, most grotesquely by AH's Conrad von Hotzendorf. Througout it all there is expressed the same ghastly hubris and almost childlike wishful thinking that took Europe into the war in the first place.

A highly recommended read for the serious WWI / 20th Century History student.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8f90657c) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8f96aae0) out of 5 stars The definitive book about how Germany and the Habsburg Empire conducted the war (WWI) 19 Jun. 2014
By Carrosio Roberto - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Professor Herwig's study of Germany and Austria-Hungary in World War I has long been recognized as the best book in any language on the subject, by revising and updating his original work he has ensured that his book will remain indispensable to anyone seeking to understand the actions and the experiences of those two powers in the war.
Indeed, this book is the last edition of a book first published on 1997, that has remained unmatched since then, this new edition includes new material on the domestic front, covering Austria-Hungary's internal political frictions and ethnic fissures and more on Austria-Hungary and Germany's position within the wider geopolitical framework.
This book begins examining how every power got involved in the war, and which war plan was prepared by them. The book , then follows the development of the conflict, with special attention to the main battles: Tannenberg, the Marne, Gallipoli, Western Front on 1915, Verdun, the Somme, Lutsk, Romania, U-boot warfare, the Nivelle Offensive, Caporetto, Operation Michael.
Three chapters of this wonderful book are dedicated to examine the effects of the total war imposed to the Central Powers .
The book is full of first hand accounts and of detailed maps; no important aspect of this terrible war is missing.
As the famous historian Hew Strachan says : " If you read one book in order to learn about the performance of the Central Powers in the war, this is it" !
HASH(0x8f96ab40) out of 5 stars REVIEW OF WWI BY THE GERMAN HERWIG 1 Feb. 2015
By J. Kellum - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very detailed account of the Great War from the German perspective. Hitler was, indeed, born at Versailles. Woodrow Wilson's role is thoroughly covered.
HASH(0x8fa3a09c) out of 5 stars Four Stars 3 Nov. 2014
By Steve H. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Extremely detailed and referenced.
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x901204a4) out of 5 stars A comprehensive visit to another era and a now distant memory of war 26 May 2014
By Sonia Campbell-Gillies - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Mr Herwig describes comprehensively the attitude that the world had toward war and how the loss of millions of dead did not serve to make humanity repent. Instead of learning from the horrors and losses, it led to another even more intense war. This is essential material for anyone interested in researching the history and reasons for war.
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