By John Lukacs
The historian John Lukacs bargains a concise historical past of the 20th century--its international wars and chilly warfare, its international locations and leaders. the nice subject matters woven via this lively narrative are inseparable from the author's personal highbrow preoccupations: the fading of liberalism, the increase of populism and nationalism, the achievements and hazards of know-how, and the continued democratization of the globe.
The old 20th century all started with the 1st global warfare in 1914 and ended seventy-five years later with the cave in of the Soviet Empire in 1989. the quick century observed the tip of ecu dominance and the increase of yankee energy and impact during the global. the 20th century used to be an American century--perhaps the American century. Lukacs explores intimately the phenomenon of nationwide socialism (national socialist events, he reminds us, have outlived the century), Hitler's sole accountability for the second one global battle, and the the most important roles performed through his decided competitors Churchill and Roosevelt. among 1939 and 1942 Germany got here towards profitable than many of us suppose.
Lukacs casts a difficult eye on the results of the second one global War--the frequently misunderstood Soviet-American chilly war--and on the transferring social and political advancements within the a ways and center East and in different places. In an eloquent last meditation at the passing of the 20th century, he displays at the increase of democracy through the global and the restrictions of human knowledge.
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Extra resources for A Short History of the Twentieth Century
Such awareness of nationalism was more anticapÂ�italist than 42 a short history of the t wentieth century Â� antisocialist—capÂ� italism being sometimes, though not predominantly. international. ) After 1920, the presence and the inÂ�fluÂ�ence of nationalist socialism spread, especially in Central Europe. Their emphasis on the adjective “nationalist” was obvious. ” Now, note that from this abbreviation the “Sozi” very soon disappeared, while the “Nazi” remained, showing that it was much more imÂ�porÂ�tant than the “Sozi” half of the adjective.
Therefore a conference assembled in Washington in 1921–1922. It was a notable achievement of the administration of Warren Harding, otherwise a president largely indifferent to foreign affairs. The main architect of this conference was Charles Evans Hughes, Harding’s estimable and excellent secretary of state. The parÂ�ticÂ�iÂ�pant powers agreed to a 5:5:5:3:3 ratio of battleship tonnages, including Japan, which largely kept to the agreement until 1934, when it chose to be no lÂ� onger bound by any such called Nine-Â� naval restrictions.
The French prime minister, Georges Clemenceau, hoped for a lasting, even perÂ� manent Anglo-Â�American-Â�French alliance guaranteeing the frontiers and the security of France—but this did not come about. He also thought that most of these new successor states in Eastern Europe should be allies of France—another military and poÂ�litÂ�iÂ�cal guarantee for France in the unspeakable case of another German-Â� French war. That, too, did not last. Less than twenty years after 1919, the once-Â�impressive alliance system of France with Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Romania, and even Poland had become worthless.