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Pandora's Box


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About the Author

Joern Leonhard is Professor of European History at the University of Freiburg.


[A] monumental history...Pandora's Box is a major contribution to the historiography of the war, the best large-scale synthesis in any language of what we currently know and understand about this multidimensional, cataclysmic conflict...Leonhard has a rare gift for critical, intelligent narrative...A detailed, judicious and virtually comprehensive account of the war, its origins, its history and its consequences.--Richard J. Evans"Times Literary Supplement" (11/06/2018)
[A] very readable history of the war; thankfully, it is far more than a list of battles, but a thoughtful consideration of the epic destructive event in all its varied ramifications...There are more books on the First World War than anyone (even enthusiasts) could read, but Leonhard's is an honorable addition, a large and weighty volume, literally and metaphorically, that is well worth the time dipping into. Well researched and detailed, Pandora's Box never tosses the reader into a roiling overload of facts and figures, but looks at the horrors of WWI from many different, illuminating angles.-- (04/09/2018)
A library of books were published to mark the centenary of the Great War, but none of them are as good as Joern Leonhard's gracefully written, deeply researched, and constantly illuminating account. This is a wonderful book, filled with new information and fresh insights.--James Sheehan, Stanford University, author of Where Have All the Soldiers Gone? The Transformation of Modern Europe
Pandora's Box stands out as the most comprehensive recent book on the First World War in any language. Leonhard provides us with a narrative analysis that combines intellectual precision and thematic focus with multiple perspectives. From the microcosm of the trenches to the home fronts, from the big battles in the East and the West to violent upheavals after 1918, Leonhard's treatment of the war is wide-ranging while also giving ample space to the different layers of war experiences.--Robert Gerwarth, University College Dublin, author of The Vanquished: Why the First World War Failed to End
Extremely readable, lucidly structured, focused, and dynamic, Pandora's Box shows that the world that emerges from the First World War is utterly transformed by the experience. Leonhard's analysis is enlivened by a sharp eye for concrete situations and an ear for the voices that best convey the meaning of change for the people and societies undergoing it.--Christopher Clark, University of Cambridge, author of The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914

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