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1914-1945 La guerre civile européenne…
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1914-1945 La guerre civile européenne (edition 2009)

by E Traverso

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1403196,693 (3.69)None
Europe's second Thirty Years' War--an epoch of blood and ashes Fire and Blood looks at the European crisis of the two world wars as a single historical sequence: the age of the European Civil War (1914-1945). Its overture was played out in the trenches of the Great War; its coda on a ruined continent. It opened with conventional declarations of war and finished with "unconditional surrender." Proclamations of national unity led to eventual devastation, with entire countries torn to pieces. During these three decades of deepening conflicts, a classical interstate conflict morphed into a global civil war, abandoning rules of engagement and fought by irreducible enemies rather than legitimate adversaries, each seeking the annihilation of its opponents. It was a time of both unchained passions and industrial, rationalized massacre. Utilizing multiple sources, Enzo Traverso depicts the dialectic of this era of wars, revolutions and genocides. Rejecting commonplace notions of "totalitarian evil," he rediscovers the feelings and reinterprets the ideas of an age of intellectual and political commitment when Europe shaped world history with its own collapse.… (more)
Member:GRMaterialistes
Title:1914-1945 La guerre civile européenne
Authors:E Traverso
Info:Hachette (2009), Poche, 370 pages
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Fire and Blood: The European Civil War, 1914-1945 by Enzo Traverso

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English (2)  French (1)  All languages (3)
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Traverso makes a few valuable, if overtly political and, at times, moralising, points about the traditionally liberal conceptions of the period under study. What I found most compelling was the investigation of the terms 'war' and 'peace', terms which, if their meaning and significance to the human being are to be captured, cannot be conceived of in such a narrow and legalistic sense as 'the organised conflict of state actors' and, coversely, the lack thereof. That, if nothing else, is certainly something to chew on. But if we were to situate this work within the discussion of whether history-writing ought to be a Rankean exercise in empiricism or, instead, the pursuit of a literary art form, we might leave both sides uncomfortable, for Traverso's engagement with primary sources is cursory and his writing is dry and boring. To be fair to him as an author, that latter may well be the fault of the translator. Traverso seems to have envisioned a grand synthesis with a generational approach to an otherwise familiar period, but the final product is really more provocative than it is compelling. These shortfalls might explain the choice of publisher in Verso Books. ( )
  woj2000 | Mar 5, 2023 |
An absolutely sobering read as the US moves into the age of Trump. The discussion of fear and violence by Hobbes, interpreted by Schmidt, is chilling. All these years later, the song remains the same. Nothing is certain, every victory temporary. ( )
  kcshankd | Nov 23, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Enzo Traversoprimary authorall editionscalculated
Fernbach, DavidTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Europe's second Thirty Years' War--an epoch of blood and ashes Fire and Blood looks at the European crisis of the two world wars as a single historical sequence: the age of the European Civil War (1914-1945). Its overture was played out in the trenches of the Great War; its coda on a ruined continent. It opened with conventional declarations of war and finished with "unconditional surrender." Proclamations of national unity led to eventual devastation, with entire countries torn to pieces. During these three decades of deepening conflicts, a classical interstate conflict morphed into a global civil war, abandoning rules of engagement and fought by irreducible enemies rather than legitimate adversaries, each seeking the annihilation of its opponents. It was a time of both unchained passions and industrial, rationalized massacre. Utilizing multiple sources, Enzo Traverso depicts the dialectic of this era of wars, revolutions and genocides. Rejecting commonplace notions of "totalitarian evil," he rediscovers the feelings and reinterprets the ideas of an age of intellectual and political commitment when Europe shaped world history with its own collapse.

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