Audiobook ↠ Crucible Epub Þ

Audiobook ↠ Crucible Epub Þ



10 thoughts on “Crucible

  1. Liviu Liviu says:

    One of the best history books I've read recently very engaging style and an interesting structure following the main events of the period through the activities of uite a few characters of which some of the most notable are the principled non tipper starting in New York 1917 the impatient revolutionary starting in Zurich 1917 the Georgian bank robber just released from Siberia and going back to Petrograd 1917 and the mangy field runner starting in the trenches of the western front but with many many others and it obviously ends in 1924 with the unheroic death and the start of the public afterlife of the impatient revolutionary the beginning of the domination of the bank robber and the marginalization of the non tipper which as we know ended with an ice pick to the head in Mexico and the release of the mangy field runner from an ultimately short just under a year out of a 5 year sentence but productive stay in prison where he wrote his soon to be very successful book about his struggleDefinitely would be interested to a seuel or as outside of the above we also meet and here noting only the surviving characters by 1924 as there were also notable characters like Rosa Luxemburg and Woodrow Wilson that passed away like the impatient revolutionary within our period Hemingway Freud Einstein Mussolini the Kaiser Mustafa Kemal Andre Breton William du Bois Marcus Garvey Henry Ford Winston Churchill Charles de Gaulle Eamon de Valera Clare Sheridan Nadya Ulyanova Josephine Baker so a reconstruction of their and others that come to the fore activities in the next 15 years say would make for great reading tooHighly recommended


  2. Zeb Kantrowitz Zeb Kantrowitz says:

    If the end of WW1 was just the beginning of the twentieth century's Fifty Year War what changes did it make to Europe and the world that led to the continuation beginning again in 1937 At the end of the war it was decided by the victorious allies at Versailles to divide up four of the major empires that existed before the warGermany lost all their colonies and was split in half with the loss of the Polish Corridor Russia was forced to give up the Baltic States area for the new Polish Republic Austria Hungary was split into its' constituent parts as was the Ottoman Empire Alsace Lorraine was returned to France Japan was given the mandate over Germany's Pacific Island colonies; Czechoslavokia Yugoslavia and Poland grew out of Germany and A H while Italy was able to grow north to the Brenner pass England was happy with parts of Africa and the Middle East as was France The US acuired only the plaudits for helping to win the war and the freeing of many peopleBut none of this happened in a bubble there was diplomacy revolution wars and negotiations that were needed to solidify what was decided at the Peace Conference at Versailles Who and how this all happened is what Crucible is all about It is a finely written account of the people and personalities that would create the situations that then led to the last part of the Fifty Years WarZeb Kantrowitz zebsblogblogspotcom


  3. Maggie Duval Maggie Duval says:

    One of the best history books I’ve ever read I really enjoyed his approach and styleSomething pretty cool I finished the book reading his acknowledgments which he penned on Easter 2019 I’m finishing it on Easter 2020


  4. Socraticgadfly Socraticgadfly says:

    Great bookThe best way to describe it is this is a Great Men generic mann not mensch of History based book but told in vignettes like a People's History book And it covers so muchFirst the dates make sense The March Revolution in Russia paired with German resumption of submarine warfare bringing America in of course mean 1917 for the startThe end date? Lenin dies in 1924 Hitler goes to prison the German hyperinflation and French occupation of the Ruhr end and new loan agreements from America do end the war and birth a new world — for five years until the Depression hitsI learned a lot about several great men in this bookFirst I've thought Jung with his New Ageism was loonier than Freud OTOH I now read that Freud believed in numerology and had a general superstitious streak Plus he tried to combine Lamarckianism with Freudianism into some weird early version of evolutionary psychologySecond the whole 1920 24 Lenin Trotsky Stalin denouement skipping from vignette to vignette plays out so well I knew that Lenin was at work at least partially writing Stalin out of the Party before his first major stroke I also knew that Stalin was tightening his hold on the Politburo especially at levels a rung or two below the top But Emmerson explains just how much many of the people at the top ideologically loathed the New Economic Policy Even he shows how Trotsky by long absences from Moscow and a general insouciance of sorts undercut himself as much as Stalin undercut him This element of the book was worth the price aloneThird I noted Freud above Emmerson loops in many others British suffragists visiting Lenin Einstein invited on world tours to talk relativity and raise money for Zionism Clare Sheridan Churchill's cousin and would be and generally actual sculptor to the new world leaders Andre Breton and Surrealism Tristan Tzara and Dadaism Young Hemingway Guillaume ApollinaireAnd leaders and ex leaders Kaiser Wilhelm brooding self deluding and chopping wood in Dutch exile The Irish civil war and Valera's work to set up Michael Collins as a patsy though it didn't work The early post war days of Hitler referred to repeatedly as the mangy field runner with notes about how he could honestly start with the German Workers Party because beyond anti semitism his initial animus was toward capitalism not communism above anything elseThat's than enough This is a great book


  5. Ian Racey Ian Racey says:

    I love the ambition of this book a narrative history to show that the First World War didn't just end it split off into dangling smaller upheavals that continued alongside each other for years All Europe must still have felt at war only everywhere was now fighting their own smaller wars revolution and civil war in Russia; war between Turkey and Greece for Anatolia; first a war for independence and then a civil war in Ireland; unsuccessful attempts at communist revolution in Germany and Hungary; the fall of democracy in ItalyEmmerson organises his history as a rapid fire series of what are essentially journal entries most no than two to three paragraphs in length jumping back and forth between all his different storylines It's particularly to his credit that he doesn't limit himself to geopolitics but also follows cultural and scientific figures that illustrate how people were having to deal with a world that had fallen apart not just politically but also in how we perceived it Sigmund Freud deconstructing the human mind through psychoanalysis; Andre Breton coming to terms with the First World War by introducing absurdity into art through Dada and surrealism; Albert Einstein whose theory of relativity told people that even the physical universe itself is not a definite concrete thing but rather something shaped by our perceptions The nascent American civil rights movement of the 1920s is also covered with the rivalry between Marcus Garvey and WEB DuBois always referred to as William DuBois for some reason; I've never heard his name given that way and the beginning of the career of Josephine BakerIt's somewhat odd in the early sections to read of Einstein and Freud patriotically hoping for a Central Powers victory but then again of course they hoped Germany and Austria would win the war Why wouldn't they? That's a real strength of Emmerson's approach placing everything in the context that it had at the time rather than being subject to our later notions in this instance for me expecting Einstein and Freud to be somehow above the politics of the dayThe book's great failing is probably inevitable it's too shallow There is so much to cover that nothing can be explained or given significance The great German offensive of spring 1918 that came so close to victory that Lloyd George actually said We are going to lose this war is over and done with in a few paragraphs; at no point do we feel like the Germans are teetering on the edge of victory The Paris Peace Conference in which the most powerful men on the planet President of the United States Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Premier of France redrew the map of the whole world is over and done with in a few pages; there's no sense of the hopefulness with which the world looked to Versailles of the great disputes between Wilson and Lloyd George and Clemenceau of the army of Americans Britons and Frenchmen who produced hundreds of thousands of pages of reports trying to solve insoluble problems The Russian Civil War lasts a lot longer but there's still no detail no sense either of the Reds snatching victory from defeat or of the Whites as a lost cause desperately hanging on; it's all that one side attacked from the north while another launched an offensive in the southEmmerson has a peculiar aversion to telling us who the hell it is that he's talking about This is most apparent in the book's opening hundred or so pages where each new entry introduces a new major character but where again and again he talks about the person for some time before telling us his name first with Lenin then with Freud then with Trotsky Freud doesn't get named at all in his first entry; we have to wait till his second for that But it also recurs throughout the book in the early 1920s for instance even after Ernest Hemingway has popped up a dozen times already as a high school student in Chicago or a wounded ambulance driver on the Italian Front or a budding newspaper journalist we're still given a section about two American tourists a young man and his wife who turn up at an Austrian inn while on a hiking tour of the Alps and not until they've been described in detail are we told that they're Hemingway and his first wife HadleyA bit related to that is Emmerson's predilection for nicknames When Leon Trotsky first appears in early 1917 living in exile in New York the first thing we're told about him is that he refuses to tip at the diner he freuents because it violates his political principles This is a neat little titbit that illuminates Trotsky both personally and politically; what it is not is the man's defining characteristic of which we must be reminded every single time he reappears throughout the first half of the book By 1918 Trotsky is Bolshevik Russia's commissar of foreign affairs the second most powerful man in the Revolution and the lead Russian negotiator at the Brest Litovsk peace conference which will soon lead to Russia signing a separate peace with Germany Austria and the Ottoman Empire and dropping out of the war And yet even at this point Emmerson is still likely to refer to him as the principled non tipper than he is by name Similarly Lenin remains the impatient revolutionary throughout the book and Hitler the mangy field runner During the Russo Polish War of 1920 when the Red Army under Mikhail Tukhachevsky breaks against the defences of Warsaw Emmerson mentions in passing that as a younger man Tukhachevsky went by the nickname Mischa; and from that point on Mischa becomes the only name Emmerson will call him Tukhachevsky had already become yet another figure who had been mentioned by description as a surprisingly young formerly aristocratic Red general in previous entries before we were finally given his nameOther minor figures never get named at all The first entry introducing Freud at Franz Joseph's funeral in Vienna at the beginning of 1917 says that the camera crew at the funeral is directed by a Hungarian who will one day make a name for himself in Hollywood I'm assuming this is Sir Alexander Korda but I'd rather know than assumeMy only other criticism is that there's definitely than a whiff of great man theory about Emmerson's approach to history In 1917 with the First World War raging and revolution getting underway in Russia Woodrow Wilson Kaiser Wilhelm and Vladimir Lenin are of course all major characters and remain so throughout the first half of the book But as they drop off the world stage as Wilson leaves office the Kaiser abdicates and Lenin's health fails we don't leave them in order to follow their successors We stay with them in irrelevance through Wilson's and Lenin's multiple strokes and steep declines and the Kaiser's life in exile on a Dutch manor all three men get checked in with regularly Warren Harding or the new German leadership or the growing rivalry between Stalin and Trotsky get mentioned only incidentally and far less often


  6. Bertrand Marotte Bertrand Marotte says:

    Entertaining if slight It's fun to have so many choice nuggets of information many of them in the form of gossipy details on the personal uirks of a cast of famous historical personages thrown at you in rapid fashion Not much insight to be gleaned though


  7. Joseph Spuckler Joseph Spuckler says:

    Crucible The Long End of the Great War and the Birth of a New World 1917 1924 by Charles Emmerson is an extensive history about the close of World War I and its early aftermath  Emmerson is a Senior Research Fellow at Chatham House working on resource security foreign policy and global geopolitics He is the author of The Future History of the Arctic and 1913 In Search of the World Before the Great War He was formerly a writer for the Financial Times and continues to publish regularly on international affairsThe First World War changed the entire world dynamic  Empire waned as the British Empire began to lose control in India leaving thousands dead  Physics changed when a German born scientist received the Nobel Prize for the photoelectric effect not relativity  Sigmund Freud changed the field of psychology with psychoanalysis  A Russian exile living in Zurich would make an almost unbelievable train trip back to Russia and lead a revolution  He would work with Leon Trotsky and meet with a Georgian bank robber who would become the General Secretary of the Communist Party and create a different revolution  The US and Woodrow Wilson would rise and uickly fall from prominence in European matters  The US had its own problems at home including violent racism  Democracy spread in some countries and retracted in others In defeated Germany the army fought communists in riots and a young Austrian immigrant and WWI veteran began his to power In Italy another war veteran would lead 30000 Blackshirts to the March on Rome  With the crumbling of the Ottoman Empire a young leader would become the namesake of his country The map of Europe was redrawn moving borders and creating and destroying countries  In the Middle East England and France divided the land and spread their influence  It was not the same world as it was in 1914 In most basic histories readers are led to believe that the Treaty of Versailles was the cause of the unsuccessful peace in Europe In reality it was much than that  It was the start of a different era in many aspects Industrialization mechanization nationalism science and worker's rights  Even in art modernism rose in literature and art To many this was as great of a shock as the political upheavals Emmerson explores the complexities of the tail end of WWI and the beginning of the Interwar years  Dividing the book's chapters by year the reader will see a timeline that switches between countries and people in a coherent manner This division is practical because it shows the flow of history on the whole instead of individual nations  This is the beginning of the interconnectedness of all countries rather than just the influence of regional powers It was the beginning of a new world new ideas modern science and unfortunately the beginning of a darker side of the future  A well done extensive history of a significant but little studied period 


  8. Jim Gallen Jim Gallen says:

    Wars freuently do not end neatly and World War I was no exception The status uo ante was not restored The turmoil of war unleashed new forces ended long established dynasties and open pathways for new leaders who would shape the post war world Crucible consists of a series of entries in the nature of news items that follow the people who though not always recognized at the time would play roles in the new world to follow Some of the personalities are politicians The failing grip of the Vladimir Lenin the impatient revolutionary the rise of Josef Stalin the Georgian bank robber and the wary Leon Trotsky the principled non tipper were remaking the landscape of Russia Gabriele D’Annunzio and Benito Mussolini contested for leadership in Italy while Ismael Enver Pasha and Mustafa Kemal advanced their visions for a new Turkey While the deposed Kaiser Wilhelm II cut trees and dreamed of a return to the throne and former Emperor Charles plotted to be restored as King of Hungary Adolf Hitler was laying the groundwork for his career In the United States black activist Marcus Garvey promoted black empowerment and his own personal advancement through shady business schemes while William Du Bois struggled for leadership of Black Americans and dancer Josephine Baker made a name for herself as an entertainer to both blacks and whites Physicist Albert Einstein and psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud faced resistance to their theories based on scientific principles enhanced by increasing anti Semitism Ernest Hemmingway was finding buyers for his writings and early loves of his lifeEach reader can pick the story line that most appeals to him or her and whets the appetite for My favorite is the wrenching struggle for independence that the Irish fought against the Empire and amongst themselves as recorded in the entries about Michael Collins who was at the heart of the movement that secured Irish Independence before being killed in an ambush during a Civil War against among others his one time ally Eamon deValera What is often thought of as a simple case of Irish versus British is shown as an international and intramural blood contest over the definitions of independence the achievable and the available means that fueled the flames of personal rivalries split the Ireland’s leaders and rent its land asunderAlthough not too difficult to follow I found the style of jumping from one incident to another to be unusual Life does is not lived in organized compartments but evolves as a series of seemingly unrelated incidents Author Charles Emmerson has demonstrated a skill of picking tales from 1917 1924 and weaving them into a narrative that presents an old world dying while the new is being born This tome is long but in short enough segments to absorbed by the patient but knowledgeable reader


  9. Richard Hakes Richard Hakes says:

    As the title suggests a long book I must admit to an ignorance to the comings and goings post WW1 Then again why would I as it is not a subject area I ever recall watching or reading about A case of an unknown unknown A healthy general understanding of European and American history is essential Saying all this worth a read if you have any interest in the world and how it came to be


  10. Mam Mam says:

    Amazing detail about the unsettling and politically unstable period following the war Actually too much detail for me in an audio book I plan to get a copy of the printed text I found the account fascinating and enlightening AND with so many parallels to today


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Crucible ❮Reading❯ ➳ Crucible ➬ Author Charles Emmerson – Capitalsoftworks.co.uk The gripping story of the years that ended the Great War and launched Europe and America onto the roller coaster of the twentieth century Crucible is filled with all too human tales of exuberant dream The gripping story of the years that ended the Great War and launched Europe and America onto the roller coaster of the twentieth century Crucible is filled with all too human tales of exuberant dreams dark fears and the absurdities of chanceIn Petrograd a fire is lit The Tsar is packed off to Siberia A rancorous Russian exile returns to proclaim a workers' revolution In America black soldiers who have served their country in Europe demand their rights at home An Austrian war veteran trained by the German army to give rousing speeches against the Bolshevik peril begins to rail against the Jews A solar eclipse turns a former patent clerk into a celebrity An American reporter living the high life in Paris searches out a new literary styleLenin and Hitler Josephine Baker and Ernest Hemingway Rosa Luxemburg and Mustafa Kemal these are some of the protagonists in this dramatic panorama of a world in turmoil Revolutions and civil wars erupt across Europe A red scare hits America Women win the vote Marching tunes are syncopated into jazz The real becomes surrealEncompassing both tragedy and humor the celebrated author of brings immediacy and intimacy to this moment of deep historical transformation that moulded the world we would come to inherit.

10 thoughts on “Crucible

  1. Liviu Liviu says:

    One of the best history books I've read recently very engaging style and an interesting structure following the main events of the period through the activities of uite a few characters of which some of the most notable are the principled non tipper starting in New York 1917 the impatient revolutionary starting in Zurich 1917 the Georgian bank robber just released from Siberia and going back to Petrograd 1917 and the mangy field runner starting in the trenches of the western front but with many many others and it obviously ends in 1924 with the unheroic death and the start of the public afterlife of the impatient revolutionary the beginning of the domination of the bank robber and the marginalization of the non tipper which as we know ended with an ice pick to the head in Mexico and the release of the mangy field runner from an ultimately short just under a year out of a 5 year sentence but productive stay in prison where he wrote his soon to be very successful book about his struggleDefinitely would be interested to a seuel or as outside of the above we also meet and here noting only the surviving characters by 1924 as there were also notable characters like Rosa Luxemburg and Woodrow Wilson that passed away like the impatient revolutionary within our period Hemingway Freud Einstein Mussolini the Kaiser Mustafa Kemal Andre Breton William du Bois Marcus Garvey Henry Ford Winston Churchill Charles de Gaulle Eamon de Valera Clare Sheridan Nadya Ulyanova Josephine Baker so a reconstruction of their and others that come to the fore activities in the next 15 years say would make for great reading tooHighly recommended

  2. Zeb Kantrowitz Zeb Kantrowitz says:

    If the end of WW1 was just the beginning of the twentieth century's Fifty Year War what changes did it make to Europe and the world that led to the continuation beginning again in 1937 At the end of the war it was decided by the victorious allies at Versailles to divide up four of the major empires that existed before the warGermany lost all their colonies and was split in half with the loss of the Polish Corridor Russia was forced to give up the Baltic States area for the new Polish Republic Austria Hungary was split into its' constituent parts as was the Ottoman Empire Alsace Lorraine was returned to France Japan was given the mandate over Germany's Pacific Island colonies; Czechoslavokia Yugoslavia and Poland grew out of Germany and A H while Italy was able to grow north to the Brenner pass England was happy with parts of Africa and the Middle East as was France The US acuired only the plaudits for helping to win the war and the freeing of many peopleBut none of this happened in a bubble there was diplomacy revolution wars and negotiations that were needed to solidify what was decided at the Peace Conference at Versailles Who and how this all happened is what Crucible is all about It is a finely written account of the people and personalities that would create the situations that then led to the last part of the Fifty Years WarZeb Kantrowitz zebsblogblogspotcom

  3. Maggie Duval Maggie Duval says:

    One of the best history books I’ve ever read I really enjoyed his approach and styleSomething pretty cool I finished the book reading his acknowledgments which he penned on Easter 2019 I’m finishing it on Easter 2020

  4. Socraticgadfly Socraticgadfly says:

    Great bookThe best way to describe it is this is a Great Men generic mann not mensch of History based book but told in vignettes like a People's History book And it covers so muchFirst the dates make sense The March Revolution in Russia paired with German resumption of submarine warfare bringing America in of course mean 1917 for the startThe end date? Lenin dies in 1924 Hitler goes to prison the German hyperinflation and French occupation of the Ruhr end and new loan agreements from America do end the war and birth a new world — for five years until the Depression hitsI learned a lot about several great men in this bookFirst I've thought Jung with his New Ageism was loonier than Freud OTOH I now read that Freud believed in numerology and had a general superstitious streak Plus he tried to combine Lamarckianism with Freudianism into some weird early version of evolutionary psychologySecond the whole 1920 24 Lenin Trotsky Stalin denouement skipping from vignette to vignette plays out so well I knew that Lenin was at work at least partially writing Stalin out of the Party before his first major stroke I also knew that Stalin was tightening his hold on the Politburo especially at levels a rung or two below the top But Emmerson explains just how much many of the people at the top ideologically loathed the New Economic Policy Even he shows how Trotsky by long absences from Moscow and a general insouciance of sorts undercut himself as much as Stalin undercut him This element of the book was worth the price aloneThird I noted Freud above Emmerson loops in many others British suffragists visiting Lenin Einstein invited on world tours to talk relativity and raise money for Zionism Clare Sheridan Churchill's cousin and would be and generally actual sculptor to the new world leaders Andre Breton and Surrealism Tristan Tzara and Dadaism Young Hemingway Guillaume ApollinaireAnd leaders and ex leaders Kaiser Wilhelm brooding self deluding and chopping wood in Dutch exile The Irish civil war and Valera's work to set up Michael Collins as a patsy though it didn't work The early post war days of Hitler referred to repeatedly as the mangy field runner with notes about how he could honestly start with the German Workers Party because beyond anti semitism his initial animus was toward capitalism not communism above anything elseThat's than enough This is a great book

  5. Ian Racey Ian Racey says:

    I love the ambition of this book a narrative history to show that the First World War didn't just end it split off into dangling smaller upheavals that continued alongside each other for years All Europe must still have felt at war only everywhere was now fighting their own smaller wars revolution and civil war in Russia; war between Turkey and Greece for Anatolia; first a war for independence and then a civil war in Ireland; unsuccessful attempts at communist revolution in Germany and Hungary; the fall of democracy in ItalyEmmerson organises his history as a rapid fire series of what are essentially journal entries most no than two to three paragraphs in length jumping back and forth between all his different storylines It's particularly to his credit that he doesn't limit himself to geopolitics but also follows cultural and scientific figures that illustrate how people were having to deal with a world that had fallen apart not just politically but also in how we perceived it Sigmund Freud deconstructing the human mind through psychoanalysis; Andre Breton coming to terms with the First World War by introducing absurdity into art through Dada and surrealism; Albert Einstein whose theory of relativity told people that even the physical universe itself is not a definite concrete thing but rather something shaped by our perceptions The nascent American civil rights movement of the 1920s is also covered with the rivalry between Marcus Garvey and WEB DuBois always referred to as William DuBois for some reason; I've never heard his name given that way and the beginning of the career of Josephine BakerIt's somewhat odd in the early sections to read of Einstein and Freud patriotically hoping for a Central Powers victory but then again of course they hoped Germany and Austria would win the war Why wouldn't they? That's a real strength of Emmerson's approach placing everything in the context that it had at the time rather than being subject to our later notions in this instance for me expecting Einstein and Freud to be somehow above the politics of the dayThe book's great failing is probably inevitable it's too shallow There is so much to cover that nothing can be explained or given significance The great German offensive of spring 1918 that came so close to victory that Lloyd George actually said We are going to lose this war is over and done with in a few paragraphs; at no point do we feel like the Germans are teetering on the edge of victory The Paris Peace Conference in which the most powerful men on the planet President of the United States Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Premier of France redrew the map of the whole world is over and done with in a few pages; there's no sense of the hopefulness with which the world looked to Versailles of the great disputes between Wilson and Lloyd George and Clemenceau of the army of Americans Britons and Frenchmen who produced hundreds of thousands of pages of reports trying to solve insoluble problems The Russian Civil War lasts a lot longer but there's still no detail no sense either of the Reds snatching victory from defeat or of the Whites as a lost cause desperately hanging on; it's all that one side attacked from the north while another launched an offensive in the southEmmerson has a peculiar aversion to telling us who the hell it is that he's talking about This is most apparent in the book's opening hundred or so pages where each new entry introduces a new major character but where again and again he talks about the person for some time before telling us his name first with Lenin then with Freud then with Trotsky Freud doesn't get named at all in his first entry; we have to wait till his second for that But it also recurs throughout the book in the early 1920s for instance even after Ernest Hemingway has popped up a dozen times already as a high school student in Chicago or a wounded ambulance driver on the Italian Front or a budding newspaper journalist we're still given a section about two American tourists a young man and his wife who turn up at an Austrian inn while on a hiking tour of the Alps and not until they've been described in detail are we told that they're Hemingway and his first wife HadleyA bit related to that is Emmerson's predilection for nicknames When Leon Trotsky first appears in early 1917 living in exile in New York the first thing we're told about him is that he refuses to tip at the diner he freuents because it violates his political principles This is a neat little titbit that illuminates Trotsky both personally and politically; what it is not is the man's defining characteristic of which we must be reminded every single time he reappears throughout the first half of the book By 1918 Trotsky is Bolshevik Russia's commissar of foreign affairs the second most powerful man in the Revolution and the lead Russian negotiator at the Brest Litovsk peace conference which will soon lead to Russia signing a separate peace with Germany Austria and the Ottoman Empire and dropping out of the war And yet even at this point Emmerson is still likely to refer to him as the principled non tipper than he is by name Similarly Lenin remains the impatient revolutionary throughout the book and Hitler the mangy field runner During the Russo Polish War of 1920 when the Red Army under Mikhail Tukhachevsky breaks against the defences of Warsaw Emmerson mentions in passing that as a younger man Tukhachevsky went by the nickname Mischa; and from that point on Mischa becomes the only name Emmerson will call him Tukhachevsky had already become yet another figure who had been mentioned by description as a surprisingly young formerly aristocratic Red general in previous entries before we were finally given his nameOther minor figures never get named at all The first entry introducing Freud at Franz Joseph's funeral in Vienna at the beginning of 1917 says that the camera crew at the funeral is directed by a Hungarian who will one day make a name for himself in Hollywood I'm assuming this is Sir Alexander Korda but I'd rather know than assumeMy only other criticism is that there's definitely than a whiff of great man theory about Emmerson's approach to history In 1917 with the First World War raging and revolution getting underway in Russia Woodrow Wilson Kaiser Wilhelm and Vladimir Lenin are of course all major characters and remain so throughout the first half of the book But as they drop off the world stage as Wilson leaves office the Kaiser abdicates and Lenin's health fails we don't leave them in order to follow their successors We stay with them in irrelevance through Wilson's and Lenin's multiple strokes and steep declines and the Kaiser's life in exile on a Dutch manor all three men get checked in with regularly Warren Harding or the new German leadership or the growing rivalry between Stalin and Trotsky get mentioned only incidentally and far less often

  6. Bertrand Marotte Bertrand Marotte says:

    Entertaining if slight It's fun to have so many choice nuggets of information many of them in the form of gossipy details on the personal uirks of a cast of famous historical personages thrown at you in rapid fashion Not much insight to be gleaned though

  7. Joseph Spuckler Joseph Spuckler says:

    Crucible The Long End of the Great War and the Birth of a New World 1917 1924 by Charles Emmerson is an extensive history about the close of World War I and its early aftermath  Emmerson is a Senior Research Fellow at Chatham House working on resource security foreign policy and global geopolitics He is the author of The Future History of the Arctic and 1913 In Search of the World Before the Great War He was formerly a writer for the Financial Times and continues to publish regularly on international affairsThe First World War changed the entire world dynamic  Empire waned as the British Empire began to lose control in India leaving thousands dead  Physics changed when a German born scientist received the Nobel Prize for the photoelectric effect not relativity  Sigmund Freud changed the field of psychology with psychoanalysis  A Russian exile living in Zurich would make an almost unbelievable train trip back to Russia and lead a revolution  He would work with Leon Trotsky and meet with a Georgian bank robber who would become the General Secretary of the Communist Party and create a different revolution  The US and Woodrow Wilson would rise and uickly fall from prominence in European matters  The US had its own problems at home including violent racism  Democracy spread in some countries and retracted in others In defeated Germany the army fought communists in riots and a young Austrian immigrant and WWI veteran began his to power In Italy another war veteran would lead 30000 Blackshirts to the March on Rome  With the crumbling of the Ottoman Empire a young leader would become the namesake of his country The map of Europe was redrawn moving borders and creating and destroying countries  In the Middle East England and France divided the land and spread their influence  It was not the same world as it was in 1914 In most basic histories readers are led to believe that the Treaty of Versailles was the cause of the unsuccessful peace in Europe In reality it was much than that  It was the start of a different era in many aspects Industrialization mechanization nationalism science and worker's rights  Even in art modernism rose in literature and art To many this was as great of a shock as the political upheavals Emmerson explores the complexities of the tail end of WWI and the beginning of the Interwar years  Dividing the book's chapters by year the reader will see a timeline that switches between countries and people in a coherent manner This division is practical because it shows the flow of history on the whole instead of individual nations  This is the beginning of the interconnectedness of all countries rather than just the influence of regional powers It was the beginning of a new world new ideas modern science and unfortunately the beginning of a darker side of the future  A well done extensive history of a significant but little studied period 

  8. Jim Gallen Jim Gallen says:

    Wars freuently do not end neatly and World War I was no exception The status uo ante was not restored The turmoil of war unleashed new forces ended long established dynasties and open pathways for new leaders who would shape the post war world Crucible consists of a series of entries in the nature of news items that follow the people who though not always recognized at the time would play roles in the new world to follow Some of the personalities are politicians The failing grip of the Vladimir Lenin the impatient revolutionary the rise of Josef Stalin the Georgian bank robber and the wary Leon Trotsky the principled non tipper were remaking the landscape of Russia Gabriele D’Annunzio and Benito Mussolini contested for leadership in Italy while Ismael Enver Pasha and Mustafa Kemal advanced their visions for a new Turkey While the deposed Kaiser Wilhelm II cut trees and dreamed of a return to the throne and former Emperor Charles plotted to be restored as King of Hungary Adolf Hitler was laying the groundwork for his career In the United States black activist Marcus Garvey promoted black empowerment and his own personal advancement through shady business schemes while William Du Bois struggled for leadership of Black Americans and dancer Josephine Baker made a name for herself as an entertainer to both blacks and whites Physicist Albert Einstein and psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud faced resistance to their theories based on scientific principles enhanced by increasing anti Semitism Ernest Hemmingway was finding buyers for his writings and early loves of his lifeEach reader can pick the story line that most appeals to him or her and whets the appetite for My favorite is the wrenching struggle for independence that the Irish fought against the Empire and amongst themselves as recorded in the entries about Michael Collins who was at the heart of the movement that secured Irish Independence before being killed in an ambush during a Civil War against among others his one time ally Eamon deValera What is often thought of as a simple case of Irish versus British is shown as an international and intramural blood contest over the definitions of independence the achievable and the available means that fueled the flames of personal rivalries split the Ireland’s leaders and rent its land asunderAlthough not too difficult to follow I found the style of jumping from one incident to another to be unusual Life does is not lived in organized compartments but evolves as a series of seemingly unrelated incidents Author Charles Emmerson has demonstrated a skill of picking tales from 1917 1924 and weaving them into a narrative that presents an old world dying while the new is being born This tome is long but in short enough segments to absorbed by the patient but knowledgeable reader

  9. Richard Hakes Richard Hakes says:

    As the title suggests a long book I must admit to an ignorance to the comings and goings post WW1 Then again why would I as it is not a subject area I ever recall watching or reading about A case of an unknown unknown A healthy general understanding of European and American history is essential Saying all this worth a read if you have any interest in the world and how it came to be

  10. Mam Mam says:

    Amazing detail about the unsettling and politically unstable period following the war Actually too much detail for me in an audio book I plan to get a copy of the printed text I found the account fascinating and enlightening AND with so many parallels to today

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