History 4422 world war i in europe
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History 4422: World War I in Europe. Introduction. Introduction. Questions to Think about: What will the course cover? How do we study war? As a military enterprise: Military history: strategy and tactics; football As a social, political, and cultural experience How will we cover it?

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History 4422: World War I in Europe

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History 4422 world war i in europe

History 4422: World War I in Europe

Introduction


Introduction

Introduction

  • Questions to Think about:

    • What will the course cover?

      • How do we study war?

        • As a military enterprise:

          • Military history: strategy and tactics; football

        • As a social, political, and cultural experience

    • How will we cover it?

      • Lectures

      • Readings: the textbook; assigned articles and book chapters

      • Discussions

    • Why bother?

      • Why will we devote a semester to studying the First World War?


Pre war e urop e

Pre-War Europe

  • Why did Europe go to war in 1914?

  • Why did the war assume the character – long, brutal, industrial, global – that it did?

  • The “World We Have Lost”

    • A continent at peace: 1814 – 1914

      • Significance of the Franco-Prussian War, 1870 – 1871

        • Creation of a unified German Empire

        • Franco-German antagonism: Alsace-Lorraine

  • Sources of Transformation and Disequilibrium

    • Economic Transformation

      • Decline of Agriculture: the ‘Great Depression’ of 1875 – 1890s

      • Urbanization

      • “Second Industrial Revolution”: transformation of military technology

      • Emergence of Working Class Politics

    • Nationalism

      • Nationalism as force of political unification: Italy and Germany

      • Nationalism as force of political fragmentation: Austro-Hungarian Empire

    • Empire and European Imperialism


British and german industrial production 1875 1913

British and German Industrial Production 1875 - 1913


Pre war europe pt 2

Pre-War Europe, pt. 2

  • Diplomatic Alliances in pre-war Europe

    • Bismarck’s grand scheme: diplomatic isolation of France

      • The Three Emperors’ League (Dreikaiserbund): 1873-78; 1881 - 87

      • The Reinsurance Treaty, 1887

      • Defensive character of the alliance system

    • Bismarck’s grand scheme dismantled

      • Wilhelm II’s accession to the throne, 1890

      • Failure to renew the Reinsurance Treaty

      • Origins of the “Triple Entente”

        • Franco-Russian Alliance (1892, 1894)

        • Settling Colonial/Imperial Disputes

          • Entente Cordiale: Great Britain and France, 1904

          • Anglo-Russian Entente, 1907


The july crisis 1914

The July Crisis, 1914

  • The July Crisis, 1914

    • Assassination of Arch-Duke Franz Ferdinand, 28 June 1914

    • What is at stake?

      • Territorial Integrity of Austro-Hungarian Empire

      • Slavic interests of Russian Empire

      • Strength of German military alliance with Austria-Hungary

    • Chronology

      • Austria-Hungary’s Negotiations with Germany:

        • The ‘blank check’ (5 July 1914)

      • Austrian Ultimatum to Serbia, July 23, 1914

        • A challenge to the independence of Serbia

      • Austrian Declaration of War against Serbia, July 28, 1914

      • German Declaration of War against Russia, August 1, 1914

      • German Declaration of War against France, August 3, 1914

      • British Declaration of War against Germany, August 4, 1914


Europe at war from mobilization to the marne

Europe at War: from Mobilization to the Marne

  • Thinking about the Great War

    • What do we think we know?

      • Who was responsible for the outbreak of war?

      • How did Europeans respond to the declaration of war?

      • How were civilians affected by the war?

      • Were ‘atrocity tales’ simply propaganda?

      • What did soldiers fight for?

  • Mobilization: August 1914

    • European responses to the outbreak of war

      • Enthusiasm

      • Anxiety

      • Ambivalence

  • The War of Movement, August – Sept. 1914

    • The Schlieffen Plan and what went wrong

    • Civilians in the path of war


1 st discussion

1st Discussion

  • Why did the Germans, on the one hand, and the Allied powers, on the other, interpret the same acts – burning of villages, killing of civilians, taking civilian hostages, etc. – so very differently? In the opinion of Allied observers and commentators why were these acts deemed ‘atrocities’? How did the Germans interpret the same actions?

  • What was the significance of the ‘franc-tireur’ legend in how German soldiers acted in 1914 and how German writers subsequently interpreted their actions?

  • How did British and French writers use the ‘atrocity tales’ to affirm the justice of the Allied cause? How did German writers respond to the charges that German troops committed ‘atrocities’?

  • What role did rumor play in the early weeks of the war, both at the front and far from the front lines? Why was rumor so prevalent at this point in the war?

  • How did French and Belgian civilians in the war zone experience the first weeks of war? How did civilians far removed from the fighting (for example in the countryside of south-west France) experience it?

  • What hardships did French and Belgian civilians suffer, especially in the first six weeks or so of war?


The great war from the war of movement to the stalemate war

The Great War: From the War of Movement to the Stalemate War

  • The War of Movement, August – Sept. 1914

    • The Schlieffen Plan and the two-front war:

      • In the West: the First Battle of the Marne, Sept. 1914

      • In the East: Tannenberg and Battle of Masurian Lakes, Aug. and Sept. 1914

    • Aftermath: the “Race to the Sea” in the West

  • The Stalemate War: November 1914 – March 1918

    • Part I: Nov. 1914 – June 1916: General Considerations

      • Germany and the challenge of a two-front war

      • France and Britain: breakthrough on the Western Front vs. indirect assault on ‘weak’ links

    • 1915

      • On the Western Front:

        • Spring 1915: Ypres; Artois: NeuveChapelle, Arras/Vimy/Notre Dame de Lorette; Festubert

        • Fall 1915: Champagne, Loos

      • In the Mediterranean: Gallipoli (Feb. – Dec. 1915)


The great battles of 1916 from breakthrough to attrition

The Great Battles of 1916:From Breakthrough to Attrition

  • The Great Battles of 1916

    • Verdun, February – Dec. 1916; The Somme, July – Nov. 1916

  • Verdun

    • German calculations: “bleed France white”

    • The French defense: “They will not pass” (General Robert Nivelle)

      • The Sacred Way (la voie sacrée)

      • Noria: rotation of French troops through Verdun

    • The balance sheet:

      • 162,000 French dead; 142,000 German dead; total casualties: 300,000 dead; 400,000 wounded

  • The Somme

    • British and French strategic planning; Impact of Verdun on strategic plans

    • July 1, 1916: Kitchener’s New Armies’ ‘baptism of fire’

    • The balance sheet: 419,000 British, 200,000 – 340,000 French, 400,000 - 600,000 German total casualties (killed, wounded, missing-in-action)


1917 mutiny mud and other miseries

1917: Mutiny, Mud, and other Miseries

  • 1917: The Most Important Year of the War?

    • Revolution in Russia

    • US Entry into the War

    • Fatigue, Mutiny, and the Italian Campaign

  • The “Winter of our discontent”: 1916-17 in the trenches

  • “One last push”: the Nivelle Offensive, April 1917

    • Sentiment in the French ranks, prior to April 1917

    • Great Expectations/Lost Illusions:

      • The Failure of the Nivelle Offensive

      • Mutiny in the French Ranks

        • How extensive? What did they signify?

  • British Campaigns of 1917:

    • Vimy Ridge, April 1917

    • Passchendaele, July – November, 1917


Living and dying in the trenches

Living and Dying in the Trenches

  • Reflections on the stalemate war:

    • Walking from Arras to Vimy, 1992

  • The “Poor, bloody infantryman”

    • Rotation in and out of the trenches

    • The miseries of everyday life:

      • Vermin; the weather; food

    • Daily routine: stand-to; fatigues; sentry duty

    • Night-time in the trenches: patrols; trench raids

  • Confronting the enemy

    • Fraternity of the trenches?

  • Confronting death


2 nd discussion

2nd Discussion

  • What is meant by ‘high diction’? What role, if any, did it play in encouraging men to enlist and then, once in uniform, in maintaining their commitment to the war effort?

  • What evidence exists to suggest that front-line soldiers believed they were sacrificing themselves for a worthy cause? If they did believe that they were doing so, for what (or whom) were they sacrificing themselves?

  • What motivated British and German front-line soldiers to fight?

  • What was ‘reprisal’ violence against POWs? How was it different from the regular treatment of POWs?

  • Were soldiers and civilians aware of the conditions under which ‘reprisal’ POWs were held? How do we know this?

  • How did ‘reprisal violence’ affect the way front-line soldiers thought about the enemy? Did it directly or indirectly affect their willingness to fight?

  • Was the treatment of prisoners-of-war, as described in the article, justified? Why or why not?


1918 ending the war

1918: Ending the War

  • The Military Balance Sheet, December 1917

    • Revolution in Russia; Armistice with Germany

    • Collapse of the Italian Front: Caporetto, October 1917

    • The Western Front:

      • France: Slow Recovery of the French Army

      • Britain: Passchendaele, July - November 1917

    • U.S. Entry into the War

  • Germany’s Last Offensive

    • Planning the Spring Campaign (Ludendorff Offensives)

    • Germany’s Spring Offensives:

      • March, 1917: On the Somme

      • April, 1917: the Ypres salient

      • June, 1917: the Champagne

    • Turning the Tide: June – November 1918

      • “Retreat? Hell, we just got here.” The American presence on the Western Front

      • The One Hundred Days: From the Battle of Amiens (August 1918) to the Armistice


The home fronts britain

The Home Fronts: Britain

  • The Challenges of Waging Total War

  • Britain, 1914: Social, Economic, Political Characteristics

    • Social: the Predominance of Hierarchy and Class Distinctions

    • Economic: Industrial and Urban; Dependence on Imported Food

      • Free Trade as Foundation of British prosperity

    • Political: Liberalism

      • Voluntarism vs. State compulsion

      • Responding to the challenges of an organized working class

        • National Insurance Act, 1911

  • “Business as Usual”? Liberalism and its Limits in Wartime Britain

    • Raising a Mass Army

      • Voluntary Recruitment, August 1914 – December 1915

      • Introduction of Mandatory Military Service, January 1916

    • Equipping a Mass Army

      • Battle of Neuve Chapelle (March 1915) and the “Shell Scandal”

      • Creation of Ministry of Munitions, June 1915

      • Women and Work in Wartime Britain


Expansion of the british expeditionary force august 1914 november 1918

Expansion of the British Expeditionary Force:August 1914 – November 1918

J. M. Bourne, Britain and the Great War 1914-1918, p. 177


The home fronts france

The Home Fronts: France

  • France on the eve of the Great War

    • Political Culture: the principles of the Third Republic

      • Secularism and Public Education

      • A nation-in-arms: the Revolutionary heritage

    • A nation divided: the Dreyfus Affair and its aftermath

      • Political suspicion of the professional army

      • Clericalism vs. secularism

    • Rural France: the backbone of the nation?

      • Rural vs. urban society

      • Industrialization and the militant working class

  • France at War: a Nation united

    • The “Union sacrée” of 1914

    • Mobilization and its consequences


The home fronts france pt 2

The Home Fronts: France, pt. 2

  • France at War: a Nation united

    • The “Union sacrée” of 1914:

      • Patriotism, nationalism and the French left

      • Patriotism, nationalism and the French right

    • Mobilization and its consequences

  • Rural vs. Urban France, 1914 - 1916

    • Impact of war on Rural France:

      • The ‘miracle harvest’ of 1914

      • Adapting to war: Labor shortages; affluence; anxiety and mourning

    • Urban Society: the dominance of Paris

      • The demands of an industrial, wartime economy

      • Skilled labor and “manning” the munitions industries

        • Women and wartime work

  • 1917: The Union sacrée under pressure

    • Strikes and industrial unrest: Pacifism? Revolution? or Economic Hardship?

      • 697 Strikes; 294,000 strikers


The home fronts france pt 3 the challenges of total war mobilization on many fronts

The Home Fronts: France, pt. 3:The Challenges of Total War: Mobilization on many ‘fronts’

  • Economic Mobilization and its Limits

    • Rural/Agricultural Production

    • Industrial Production

      • Women, Work, and Industrial Production

    • Strains in the ‘union sacrée’:

      • Strikes and economic misery, 1917:

        • 697 Strikes; 294,000 strikers

      • Rural/Urban divisions

  • Cultural Mobilization: Defining what the nation was fighting for

    • Intellectual ‘mobilization’

      • Defining the enemy: Kultur and German militarism

      • Defining France: the two ‘spiritual families’ of France

        • The Republican vision of France

        • The Catholic vision of France: sacrificial ideology and religion

  • What united France by 1917?


The home fronts imperial germany

The Home Fronts: Imperial Germany

  • Imperial (Wilhelmine) Germany on the eve of war

    • Political Structure: authoritarian ‘democracy’

    • Regionalism and Religious Division

      • The Kulturkampf and anti-Catholicism

    • Socio-Economic Character:

      • Urban/rural divide

      • Industrialization and the transformation of late 19th century Germany

      • The German working-class and the Social Democratic Party (SPD)

  • Comparisons with pre-war France and Britain

    • Points of similarity?

    • Critical differences:

      • Empire; Access to international trade

  • The ‘civic peace’ (Burgfrieden) of 1914

    • Why did the German working class support the war?

    • What challenges confronted wartime Germany?


British and german industrial production 1875 19131

British and German Industrial Production 1875 - 1913


The home fronts germany pt 2

The Home Fronts: Germany, pt. 2

  • The Challenges of Waging Total War

    • Comparisons with Britain and France

    • Importance of the Blockade

      • Reduction in food supplies and raw materials for industrial production

  • Economic Mobilization

    • Munitions Production, 1914 - 1916:

      • Walter Rathenau and the “War Materials Section” (KRO), 1914

      • Public and private sector ‘corporatism’

        • Guaranteeing raw materials to munitions production

        • War production and profiteering

    • Munitions Production, 1916 – 1918: the Hindenburg Program

      • Impact of military developments, 1916

      • Concentration on war-related production

      • A ‘civilian draft’ for war production (Auxiliary Service Law), Nov. 1916

    • Social Consequences of Economic Mobilization

      • Women and Work


The home fronts germany pt 3 the food crisis

The Home Fronts: Germany, pt. 3The Food Crisis

  • Overview: 3 Problems related to food

    • What type of food was available?

    • How much food was available?

    • How was the available food distributed?

  • We are what we eat: diet and social class

    • Scarcity of essential commodities:

      • Bread (1914); Pork and Butter (1915)

    • Social and cultural significance of food

  • Scarcity and Social Class

    • Rationing, food canteens, and the problems of the lower middle class

    • The “Turnip Winter” of 1916-17

  • Distribution and Social Fairness

    • How should scarce resources be distributed?

    • The Hindenburg Program and feeding industrial workers

    • The Black market and the erosion of respect for the law

  • Political Consequences


Discussion questions

Discussion Questions

What role did schooling play, before and during the war, in how German children thought about war?

What role did schooling play, before and during the war, in how French children thought about war?

What did adult civilians in France and Germany know about the real conditions at the front? What did teenagers and children know about the war?

How effective was censorship during the war?

Did soldiers tell their families about the nature of the war as they experienced it? If they did, why do you think they did so? If they didn’t, why not?

What cultural influences, beyond schooling, shaped the way young boys in Germany thought about war?

Why were middle-class boys in Germany likely to glorify war between 1914 and 1918 and then embrace fascist movements after the war?


Empire and the great war the british empire

Empire and the Great War: The British Empire

  • Overview: European Empires on the eve of war

  • The “Infinite Variety” of the British Empire

  • Imperial contributions to the British war effort

    • Ireland

    • The “White Dominions”

      • Canada

      • Australia

    • India and Africa

  • Race and War

    • Social Darwinism and racial stereotypes:

      • The “rugged frontiersman” of Canada and Australia

      • The “martial” races of India

      • South Africa and the challenges of military mobilization


Empire and war france

Empire and War: France

  • Race and Empire in Britain and France

    • The unusual case of South Africa

      • White settlers and their anxieties

      • The role of Africans in theaters of war: Africa and Europe

  • The French Empire on the Eve of War

    • Comparison with the British Empire: Similarities and differences

      • Algeria as a ‘settler colony’

    • Republicanism and the Ideology of Empire

      • Citizenship and military service

      • “The Civilizing mission” and assimilationism

  • Mobilizing the Empire for War

    • “Martial Races” and non-martial races

      • Combatants, non-combatants, and opportunities for advancement

    • Challenges of a multi-ethnic army: language and religion


5 th discussion questions

5th Discussion: Questions

  • What roles did colonial troops (troupes indigènes) play in helping the British and French wage war?

  • What attitudes to European society did the colonial troops demonstrate? If their attitudes were positive, what did they admire about Europe? If they were negative, what did they dislike?

  • What racial stereotypes and prejudices shaped how the British and French used troops in combat? What accounts for any differences you observe between British and French use of colonial troops?

  • Were French officers and soldiers grateful for the contributions colonial troops and workers made to the war effort? Uncomfortable with the presence of colonial troops in France? What explains their attitudes towards the presence of colonial troops?

  • How did the presence of colonial troops in Europe threaten the ability of either France or Britain to maintain its imperial authority?


1917 revolution in russia pt 1

1917: Revolution in Russia, pt. 1

  • Big Questions:

    • Why was there a revolution in Russia in 1917?

    • Why were there two revolutions in Russia in 1917?

    • What role did the war play in precipitating revolution?

  • Long-term Causes of Revolutionary Sentiment in Russia

    • Rural misery in post-Emancipation Russia

    • Middle class political discontent with autocracy

    • Industrialization and urban misery

    • Emergence of revolutionary ideology: Marxism

  • Failed Revolution of 1905

    • Russo-Japanese War, 1904-5

    • Urban unrest, 1905: Bloody Sunday

    • Tsarist concessions: October Manifesto, 1905

  • Impact of World War I

    • Economic impact of war

    • Tsarism discredited


The russian revolution pt 2

The Russian Revolution, pt. 2

  • The February Revolution

    • Revolution in the Streets, Feb. 23 – Feb. 28, 1917

      • Urban misery leads to political revolution

    • Overthrowing the Tsar: the Provisional Government and its goals

      • Middle class aspirations: Constitutionalism; Keep Russia in the war

    • Dual Power: the Provisional Government vs. the Petrograd Soviet

      • What was the Soviet? What were its goals?

    • Lenin’s Return to Russia, April 1917

      • ‘April Theses’: Peace, Land, Bread

    • Summer of 1917:

      • Discontentment with the war

      • Economic misery and dissatisfaction with the Provisional Government

      • Growth in urban Support for Bolshevism: “all power to the soviets”

  • Lenin’s Revolution, October 1917

    • Accomplishments

      • Peace: Treaty of Brest Litovsk, March 1918

      • Land: Land Decree, November 1917

      • Bread?


6 th discussion the russian revolution

6th Discussion: The Russian Revolution

  • How did World War I contribute to economic hardship for women in Russia? What kinds of goods became increasingly difficult to obtain? Why did scarcity of these goods undermine support for the existing political order?

  • Who were the ‘soldatki’ and why were they particularly influential in challenging Tsarism between 1915 and 1917?

  • In 1917 the great majority of the Russian people were peasants and many factory workers had only recently moved away from peasant villages. What values and forms of social organization did factory workers transfer from rural society to life in towns and cities and their work in factories?

  • Steve Smith identifies three different ways in which factory workers in 1917 Russia grounded their identity: (a) ‘factory patriotism’; (b) shop orientation: and (c) craft consciousness. What are the key characteristics of each of these?

  • Karl Marx argued that before revolution could happen industrial workers had to develop a sense of ‘working class consciousness’ – of their common identity as workers, regardless of the particular kind of work they performed. Did ‘working class consciousness’ exist among factory-workers in 1917 Petrograd? Were the three kinds of worker identity (given in question 4) obstacles to the emergence of working class consciousness?

  • Which political parties did factory workers support in 1917? What links, if any existed between ‘working class consciousness’ and support for the Bolsheviks?


History 4422 world war i in europe

From the Winter Palace to the Chateau of Versailles: Making Peace in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution

  • Lenin vs. Wilson: Two Images of Internationalism

    • Significance of the Russian Revolution

      Civil War in Russia

      Allied Intervention against Bolshevism, 1918 – 1920

      “The Red Scare” of 1919

  • Negotiating the Peace Settlement

    • Woodrow Wilson’s 14 Points, Jan. 1918

    • The Armistice, November 1918

    • The Paris Peace Conference, 1919

    • The Treaty of Versailles

      • Disarmament

      • Monetary Reparations

      • War Guilt: Article 231


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