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The First World War A Very Short Introduction

The First World War  A Very Short Introduction Author Michael Howard
ISBN-10 9780191607158
Release 2007-01-25
Pages 160
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By the time the First World War ended in 1918, eight million people had died in what had been perhaps the most apocalyptic episode the world had known. This Very Short Introduction provides a concise and insightful history of the 'Great War', focusing on why it happened, how it was fought, and why it had the consequences it did. It examines the state of Europe in 1914 and the outbreak of war; the onset of attrition and crisis; the role of the US; the collapse of Russia; and the weakening and eventual surrender of the Central Powers. Looking at the historical controversies surrounding the causes and conduct of war, Michael Howard also describes how peace was ultimately made, and the potent legacy of resentment left to Germany. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



World War II A Very Short Introduction

World War II  A Very Short Introduction Author Gerhard L. Weinberg
ISBN-10 9780191008764
Release 2014-11-13
Pages 144
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The enormous loss of life and physical destruction caused by the First World War led people to hope that there would never be another such catastrophe. How then did it come about that there was a Second World War causing twice the 30 million deaths and many times more destruction as had been caused in the previous conflict? In this Very Short Introduction, Gerhard L. Weinberg provides an introduction to the origins, course, and impact of the war on those who fought and the ordinary citizens who lived through it. Starting by looking at the inter-war years and the German invasion of Poland in September 1939, he examines how the war progressed by examining a number of key events, including the war in the West in 1940, Barbarossa, The German Invasion of the Soviet Union, the expansion of Japan's war with China, developments on the home front, and the Allied victory from 1944-45. Exploring the costs and effects of the war, Weinberg concludes by considering the long-lasting mark World War II has left on society today. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



The Cold War A Very Short Introduction

The Cold War  A Very Short Introduction Author Robert J. McMahon
ISBN-10 9780192801784
Release 2003-03-27
Pages 185
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How, when, and why did the Cold War begin? Why did it last so long? What impact did it have on the United States, the Soviet Union, Europe, and the Third World? Finally, what difference did it make to the broader history of the second half of the twentieth century? This clear and stimulating interpretive overview of the Cold War will both invite debate and encourage deeper investigation.



Twentieth Century Britain A Very Short Introduction

Twentieth Century Britain  A Very Short Introduction Author Kenneth O. Morgan
ISBN-10 9780191606489
Release 2000-08-10
Pages 144
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First published as part of the best-selling The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, Kenneth Morgan's Very Short Introduction to Twentieth-Century Britain examines the forces of consensus and of conflict in twentieth-century Britain. The account covers the trauma of the First World War and the social divisions of the twenties; fierce domestic and foreign policy debates in the thirties; the impact of the Second World War for domestic transformation, popular culture and the loss of empire; the transition from the turmoil of the seventies to the aftermath of Thatcherism and the advent of New Labour. Throughout, cultural and artistic themes are woven into the analysis, along with the distinct national experiences of Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. The profound tension that shook the United Kingdom are juxtaposed against equally deep forces for stability, cohesion, and a sense of historic identity. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



The Spanish Civil War A Very Short Introduction

The Spanish Civil War  A Very Short Introduction Author Helen Graham
ISBN-10 0192803778
Release 2005-03-24
Pages 175
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This Very Short Introduction offers a powerfully-written explanation of the Spanish Civil war's complex origins and course, and explores its impact on a personal and international scale. It examines Spanish participation in European resistance movements during World War II and also the ongoing civil war waged politically, economically, judicially and culturally inside Spain by Francoism after its military victory in 1939. During this time, history writing itself became a battleground, and the book charts the Franco regime's attempt to appropriate the past. Graham has provided an ethical reflection on the war in the context of Europe's tumultuous twentieth century, highlighting why it has inspired some of the greatest writers of our time, and how the effects of this regime continue to resonate today in Britain, continental Europe, and beyond.



The Great Depression and the New Deal A Very Short Introduction

The Great Depression and the New Deal  A Very Short Introduction Author Eric Rauchway
ISBN-10 0199740887
Release 2008-03-10
Pages 160
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The New Deal shaped our nation's politics for decades, and was seen by many as tantamount to the "American Way" itself. Now, in this superb compact history, Eric Rauchway offers an informed account of the New Deal and the Great Depression, illuminating its successes and failures. Rauchway first describes how the roots of the Great Depression lay in America's post-war economic policies--described as "laissez-faire with a vengeance"--which in effect isolated our nation from the world economy just when the world needed the United States most. He shows how the magnitude of the resulting economic upheaval, and the ineffectiveness of the old ways of dealing with financial hardships, set the stage for Roosevelt's vigorous (and sometimes unconstitutional) Depression-fighting policies. Indeed, Rauchway stresses that the New Deal only makes sense as a response to this global economic disaster. The book examines a key sampling of New Deal programs, ranging from the National Recovery Agency and the Securities and Exchange Commission, to the Public Works Administration and Social Security, revealing why some worked and others did not. In the end, Rauchway concludes, it was the coming of World War II that finally generated the political will to spend the massive amounts of public money needed to put Americans back to work. And only the Cold War saw the full implementation of New Deal policies abroad--including the United Nations, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund. Today we can look back at the New Deal and, for the first time, see its full complexity. Rauchway captures this complexity in a remarkably short space, making this book an ideal introduction to one of the great policy revolutions in history. About the Series: Oxford's Very Short Introductions offers concise and original introductions to a wide range of subjects--from Islam to Sociology, Politics to Classics, and Literary Theory to History. Not simply a textbook of definitions, each volume provides trenchant and provocative--yet always balanced and complete--discussions of the central issues in a given topic. Every Very Short Introduction gives a readable evolution of the subject in question, demonstrating how it has developed and influenced society. Whatever the area of study, whatever the topic that fascinates the reader, the series has a handy and affordable guide that will likely prove indispensable.



Decolonization

Decolonization Author Dane Kennedy
ISBN-10 9780199340491
Release 2016-04-06
Pages 128
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Between 1760 and 1800, the American people cast off British rule to create a new nation and a radically new form of government based on the idea that people have the right to govern themselves. This title provides a cohesive synthesis of the military, diplomatic, political, social, and intellectual aspects of the American Revolution, paying special attention to the Revolution's causes and consequences.



War and Technology

War and Technology Author Alex Roland
ISBN-10 9780190605384
Release 2016-10-03
Pages 152
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"Warfare and technology predate human history. The dynamic relationship between them is timeless, echoing through human history in patterns that link the bow and arrow with the IED (improvised explosive device), the walls of Jericho with reconnaissance satellites. This book traces those patterns, from the Scheoningen spears to cyberwarfare."--Provided by publisher.



Nuclear Weapons

Nuclear Weapons Author Joseph M. Siracusa
ISBN-10 9780198727231
Release 2015
Pages 127
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This title explains the history and politics of the bomb, from the technology of nuclear weapons, to the revolutionary implications of the H-bomb, and the politics of nuclear deterrence. The issues are set against a backdrop of the changing international landscape, from the early days of development through the Cold War. Despite not having been used in anger since Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Bomb is still the biggest threat that faces us in the 21st century. But what significant lessons can be learnt from the history of the nuclear weapons era?



The American West

The American West Author Stephen Aron
ISBN-10 9780199858934
Release 2015
Pages 144
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Part geographical location, part time period, and part state of mind, the American West is a concept often invoked but rarely defined. Though popular culture has carved out a short and specific time and place for the region, author and longtime Californian Stephen Aron tracks "the West" from the building of the Cahokia Mounds around 900 AD to the post-World War II migration to California. His Very Short Introduction stretches the chronology, enlarges the geography, and varies the casting, providing a history of the American West that is longer, larger, and more complicated than popular culture has previously suggested. It is a history of how portions of North America became Wests, how parts of these became American, and how ultimately American Wests became the American West. Aron begins by describing the expansion of Indian North America in the centuries before and during its early encounters with Europeans. He then explores the origins of American westward expansion from the Seven Years' War to the 1830s, focusing on the western frontier at the time: the territory between the Appalachian Mountains and the Mississippi River. He traces the narrative - temporally and geographically - through the discovery of gold in California in the mid-nineteenth century and the subsequent rush to the Pacific Slope. He shows how the passage of the Newlands Reclamation Act in 1902 brought an unprecedented level of federal control to the region, linking the West more closely to the rest of the United States, and how World War II brought a new rush of population (particularly to California), further raising the federal government's profile in the region and heightening the connections between the West and the wider world. Authoritative, lucid, and ranging widely over issues of environment, people, and identity, this is the American West stripped of its myths. The complex convergence of peoples, polities, and cultures that has decisively shaped the history of the American West serves as the key interpretive thread through this Very Short Introduction. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



Marx A Very Short Introduction

Marx  A Very Short Introduction Author Peter Singer
ISBN-10 9780192854056
Release 2000-10-12
Pages 108
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Peter Singer identifies the central vision that unifies Marx's thought, enabling us to grasp Marx's views as a whole. He explains alienation, historical materialism, the economic theory of Capital, and Marx's idea of communism, in plain English, and concludes with an assessment of Marx's legacy.



The History of Astronomy A Very Short Introduction

The History of Astronomy  A Very Short Introduction Author Michael Hoskin
ISBN-10 9780191577734
Release 2003-05-08
Pages 136
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Astronomy, perhaps the first of the sciences, was already well developed by the time of Christ. Seventeen centuries later, after Newton showed that the movements of the planets could be explained in terms of gravitation, it became the paradigm for the mathematical sciences. In the nineteenth century the analysis of star-light allowed astrophysicists to determine both the chemical composition and the radial velocities of celestial bodies, while the development of photography enabled distant objects invisible to the human eye, to be studied and measured in comfort. Technical developments during and since the Second World War have greatly enlarged the scope of the science by permitting the study of radiation. This is a fascinating introduction to the history of Western astronomy, from prehistoric times to the origins of astrophysics in the mid-nineteenth century. Historical records are first found in Babylon and Egypt, and after two millennia the arithmetical astronomy of the Babylonians merged with the Greek geometrical approach to culminate in the Almagest of Ptolemy. This legacy was transmitted to the Latin West via Islam, and led to Copernicus's claim that the Earth is in motion. In justifying this Kepler converted astronomy into a branch of dynamics, leading to Newton's universal law of gravity. The book concludes with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century applications of Newton's law, and the first explorations of the universe of stars. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



The Soviet Union A Very Short Introduction

The Soviet Union  A Very Short Introduction Author Stephen Lovell
ISBN-10 9780199238484
Release 2009-07-23
Pages 151
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Almost twenty years after the Soviet Union's end, what are we to make of its existence? Was it a heroic experiment, an unmitigated disaster, or a viable if flawed response to the modern world? What was the Soviet Union like? How did it evolve over seven decades? What was the relationship between the regime and the general population? This introduction blends political history with an investigation into the society and culture at the time. The author examines aspects of patriotism, mass culture, political violence, poverty, and ideology; and provides answers to some of the big questions about the Soviet experience.



Clausewitz A Very Short Introduction

Clausewitz  A Very Short Introduction Author Michael Howard
ISBN-10 9780191604485
Release 2002-02-21
Pages 96
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Karl von Clausewitz's study On War was described by the American strategic thinker Bernard Brodie as 'not simply the greatest, but the only great book about war'. It is hard to disagree. Even though he wrote his only major work at a time when the range of firearms was fifty yards, much of what he had to say remains relevant today. Michael Howard explains Clausewitz's ideas in terms both of his experiences as a professional soldier in the Napoleonic Wars, and of the intellectual background of his time. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



The United Nations

The United Nations Author Jussi M. Hanhimäki
ISBN-10 9780190222703
Release 2015-05-28
Pages 172
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The United Nations has been called everything from "the best hope of mankind" to "irrelevant" and "obsolete." In this concise overview, Jussi Hanhimaki sheds light on the current debate over the UN's effectiveness as he provides a clear understanding of how it was originally conceived, how it has come to its present form, and how it must confront new challenges in a rapidly changing world. After a brief history of the UN, the author examines its successes and failures as a guardian of international peace and security, as a promoter of human rights, as a protector of international law, and as an engineer of socioeconomic development.



Contemporary Art A Very Short Introduction

Contemporary Art  A Very Short Introduction Author Julian Stallabrass
ISBN-10 9780191578106
Release 2006-03-23
Pages 168
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Contemporary art has never been so popular - but what is 'contemporary' about contemporary art? What is its role today, and who is controlling its future? Bloody toy soldiers, gilded shopping carts, and embroidered tents. Contemporary art is supposed to be a realm of freedom where artists shock, break taboos, flout generally received ideas, and switch between confronting viewers with works of great emotional profundity and jaw-dropping triviality. But away from shock tactics in the gallery, there are many unanswered questions. Who is really running the art world? What effect has America's growing political and cultural dominance had on art? Julian Stallabrass takes us inside the international art world to answer these and other controversial questions, and to argue that behind contemporary art's variety and apparent unpredictability lies a grim uniformity. Its mysteries are all too easily explained, its depths much shallower than they seem. Contemporary art seeks to bamboozle its viewers while being the willing slave of business and government. This book is your antidote and will change the way you see contemporary art. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.



Ancient Philosophy A Very Short Introduction

Ancient Philosophy  A Very Short Introduction Author Julia Annas
ISBN-10 9780192853578
Release 2000-10-12
Pages 127
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Presents fundamental philosophical questions as posed by ancient philosophers, comparing and contrasting modern differences in approach and perspective.