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THE DARKEST DAYS: THE TRUTH BEHIND BRITAIN’S RUSH TO WAR, 1914

By DOUGLAS NEWTON

“A compellingly written, tightly argued, deeply researched and bracingly revisionist study.”– Christopher Clark, author of The Sleepwalkers

“If you want to understand how a Liberal cabinet decided to take Britain to war two days before the German invasion of Belgium, over the protests of a considerable peace movement, read Douglas Newton’s eloquent The Darkest Days: The Truth Behind Britain’s Rush to War, 1914.” – The Independent

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BOOK DISCUSSION 

AUGUST 4th event: On the centenary of Britain’s declaration of war, Douglas Newton Christopher Clark discuss THE DARKEST DAYS at the London Review Bookshop

As the world commemorates the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War historian Douglas Newton recounts the hidden history of Britain’s decision to enter the conflict. Drawing on a wealth of archival material, including the private papers and correspondence of leading politicians of the time, Newton pays particular attention to the widespread and vehement opposition to the war, both inside parliament and in the country at large, and reveals how Asquith, Edward Grey and Winston Churchill colluded, against the wishes and instincts of many of their parliamentary colleagues, to bring the country into the war, by any means necessary. Douglas Newton will be in conversation with Christopher Clark, author of The Sleepwalkers, one of the most lucid recent accounts of the outbreak of the First World War.

7pm / £10 – for more information and to book tickets: http://www.londonreviewbookshop.co.uk/events/2014/8/the-darkest-days-douglas-newton-and-christopher-clark

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THE DARKEST DAYS shows how the war-hungry leaders and the right-wing press hustled the nation into war, making only the barest efforts to save the peace. As a result the declaration was the result of political negotiation, dishonesty and willful belligerence that split the cabinet and kept the opposition and the nation itself in the dark until it was too late.

Through a forensic study of the personal papers of many of the key figures on both sides of the debate, historian DOUGLAS NEWTON pieces together what really went on in the frenetic weeks between the assassination in Sarajevo and Britain’s declaration of war upon Germany on Tuesday 4 August 1914.

Many recently published histories of Britain’s Great War embrace the conflict as a good war—irresistible, righteous—and popular. It has become almost heretical to offer criticism of Britain’s intervention. This book presents a new critical examination of the government’s choice for war, and weaves into the story an account of those “radicals” and other activists who urged neutral diplomacy in 1914.

http://www.versobooks.com/books/1591-the-darkest-days

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DOUGLAS NEWTON was the Associate Professor of History at University of Western Sydney. He is the author of British Policy and the Weimar Republic 1918–19; Germany 1918-1945: From Days of Hope to Years of Horror; and British Labour, European Socialism and the Struggle for Peace 1889–1914. He lives in Australia.

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“Should Britain have entered the war in 1914? This question has recently aroused controversy. As Douglas Newton shows, it was controversial in 1914, too. This book is a compellingly written, tightly argued, deeply researched and bracingly revisionist study of the decisions that led to British intervention. Newton uproots many hardy myths and reveals the deep divisions within the political elite of a country on the brink of war.”
– Christopher Clark, author of The Sleepwalkers

“Sound and informative.”
– Keith Robbins in praise of British Labour, European Socialism and the Struggle for Peace 1889-1914, Times Literary Supplement

“Newton writes well, and with a feel for the tragedy of the Great War missing in most accounts … the scholarship invested in this work is meticulous.”
– John McDermott, in praise of British Policy and the Weimar Republic 1918-1919, International History Review

“Newton’s history is meticulously researched …”
– Jill Liddington in praise of British Labour, European Socialism and the Struggle for Peace 1889-1914, History Workshop Journal

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HARDBACK: JUNE 2014 / 416 pages / ISBN: 9781781683507 / $34.95 / £20 / $41 (Canada)

ALSO AVAILABLE AS AN E-BOOK

THE DARKEST DAYS is available at a 30% discount (hardback) on our website, with free shipping and bundled ebook. Purchasing details here: http://www.versobooks.com/books/1591-the-darkest-days

 

First published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/new-book-and-london-event-douglas-newton2019s-the-darkest-days-the-truth-behind-britain2019s-rush-to-war-1914

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

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Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Communisation

Communisation

HISTORICAL MATERIALISM SYDNEY CONFERENCE 2014

CALL FOR PAPERS

STATES, SOCIAL REPRODUCTION, CAPITAL

We call this conference in a historical moment marked, at the level of public discourse, above all by uncertainty in the face of a continuing crisis of both capitalist production and the ideological, political and social forms that have hitherto underpinned it. This uncertainty is expressed, implicitly or explicitly, not just by the managers, functionaries and prognosticators of capital and state, but also by those movements that claim to systemically oppose it.  Additionally, our conference coincides with the centennial of the outbreak of World War I.

Eulogies to bravery aside, this conjuncture – of present distemper and historical disaster – allows us to ask again, and hopefully ask differently, many of the questions considered central to the broad Marxist tradition. The Great War, for many in that tradition, marked the spectacular limit point or exhaustion of a particular configuration of capital accumulation, the result of which – as figures as preeminent as Engels had prophesied – could only be bloody. To what extent do we face a similar limit point today, even if we have thus far been spared the scale of sacrificial slaughter of that previous one?

This question cannot be answered by scholars and activists operating in isolation; instead, it requires sustained theoretical and practical activity across virtually the entire field of Marxist research and practice: the critique of political economy opening out to critiques of the state; examinations of the relationship between the state, capital, and the social movements that contest both; investigations into the specificity of class and its relation to other structural forms of oppression; considerations of the nature and form that a communist revolution will take today (1914 marking too, of course, the failure of one such conception); interrogations of the relevance of imperialism and settler colonialism to the current conjuncture; and critical analyses of the production of nature on a world-scale. To answer or even just correctly pose these questions requires an engagement with Marxism’s multifarious inheritances, but will also imply openness to new data, integration with the experience of new social struggles, and fresh theoretical perspectives informed by these.

We ask for submissions of 250 word abstracts for papers on these and other topics that engage with this broader tradition, critically or otherwise; panel proposals should include short abstracts for each paper coupled with an outline of the panel as a whole. We especially welcome contributions from activists and scholars outside of (or peripheral to) the academy.

 

All submissions should be emailed to hmaustralasia [at] gmail.com.

Website: https://hmaustralasia.org/2014/04/15/historical-materialism-australasia-2014-states-social-reproduction-capital/

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academic.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskpoint.blogspot.com

Imperialism

Imperialism

‘REAL WORLD WAR ONE’ FREESCHOOL

Sunday 18 May

11.30am-5.30pm at No.88 Fleet Street, EC4 1DH (Blackfriars tube)

 

Sessions on:

WW1’s relevance today and why capitalism needs war

Mutinies, women’s protests and revolutions

Countering Cameron’s WW1 commemorations

Putin, Ukraine and war today?

 

Please check this website in May for confirmation of the final programme: therealww1.wordpress.com

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski at Academia: http://independent.academic.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskpoint.blogspot.com

Welfare State

Welfare State

BRIGHTON NUT CONFERENCE: HOW SHOULD WE REMEMBER AND TEACH ABOUT THE WAR?

Brighton National Union of Teachers

Speakers:

Seamus Milne (Guardian),

Lindsey German (Stop the War),

Andy Stone (Defend School History).

 

 

Sunday 20th April, 8pm, Mercure, Kings Road, Brighton

See: http://noglory.org/index.php/10-no-glory-in-war-events?start=6

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski at Academia: http://independent.academic.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskpoint.blogspot.com

ICCE IV

ICCE IV

Russian Revolution

CONFERENCE ON WAR, REVOLUTION, CIVIL WAR: EASTERN EUROPE 1917-23

UCD CENTRE FOR WAR STUDIES

War, Revolution, Civil War: Eastern Europe 1917-23
25-26 March 2011

Venue: Clinton Institute, Seminar Room
University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
Friday, 25 March 2011

13:00 Registration
13:30  Welcome and Introduction

13:45 – 15:30   Panel 1: The War as Imperial Challenge – Russia
Chair: Nikolaus Katzer (German Historical Institute Moscow)

Semen Gol’din (Hebrew University Jerusalem): The Jewish Policy of Military and Civilian Authorities as a Case Study of the Systemic Crisis in the Russian Empire, 1914-1917

Alexander Semyonov (Smolny Institute St. Petersburg/ Ab Imperio) World War as the Civil War and Civil War as the World War: The Radicalization of Political Visions in the War Time Russian Empire

Boris Kolonicky (European University St. Petersburg) “Nicolas the 3rd”: Images of the Commander in Chief Grand Duke Nikolaj Nikolaevich (1914-1915)

15:030– 16:00   COFFEE BREAK

16:00 – 17:30 Panel 2:  Revolution and Civil War – Russia
Chair: Katja Bruisch (German Historical Institute Moscow)

Vladimir Shishkin (Institute of History, Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk) WWI as a factor of Russian Revolution and Counterrevolution

Yulia Yurievna Khmelevskaya (Center for Cultural History Studies, South Ural State University, Chelyabinsk) A la Guerre com a la Guerre: the American Relief Administration and experience of the First World War in Fighting the famine in early Soviet Russia, 1921-1923

Dmitrij Simonov (Institute of History, Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk) Russia’s Military Potential in 1918

19:30 DINNER

Saturday, 26 March 2011

09:30 – 11:00   Panel 3: The Baltics and Finland
Chair:  Tomas Balkelis (University College Dublin)

Juha Siltala (Helsinki University) Terror in the Finnish Civil War

Aldis Minins (University of Latvia) Manifestations of the Civil War in Latvia, 1918-1920

Taavi Minnik (Talinn University) Terror and Repressions in Estonia, 1918-1919

11:00– 11:30 TEA / COFFE BREAK

11:30 -13:00  Panel 4: Poland
Chair: Julia Eichenberg (University College Dublin)

Frank Golczewski (University of Hamburg): The Wars after the War. The Fight for the Polish Eastern Border 1918-1920

Jan Snopko (Białystok University): The influence of the Russian revolution on the policy of Joseph Pilsudski and the fate of the Polish Legions (1917-1918)

Rüdiger Ritter (Free University Berlin): Germans and Poles fighting against regional identity: The Confrontations in Upper Silesia after World War I from the perspectives of participants, the regional, national, and international public

13:00– 13:30 LUNCH BREAK

13:00 – 14:30  Panel 5:  The Balkans
Chair: John Paul Newman (University College Dublin)

Mark Biondich (Carleton University) Preliminary title: The Balkans Revolution, War, and Political Violence

Alexander Korb (University of Leicester) “Terrorists interned” Ustasha nationalists, revisionist powers and the breakup of Yugoslavia

Uğur Ümit Üngör (University of Utrecht) A Ten-year War? Post-war Violence in the Ottoman-Russian Borderlands

Dmitar Tasic (Institute for Strategic Research, Department of Military History) Some Common Attributes of Political Violence in Albania, Yugoslavia, and Bulgaria

14:30 COFFEE / TEA BREAK

15:00 – 16:00  Rountable Discussion
Chair: Robert Gerwarth (University College Dublin)

For information about attendance, contact: christina.griessler@ucd.ie

—END—

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com