Was Britain Right to Enter the Great War?
Whether Britain was right to enter the Great War remains a substantive and contentious issue. Writers such as Niall Ferguson have argued that it was an appalling error; others, such as Max Hastings, assert that Britain had no real option but to get involved.
In this double-header, two eminent and academic war historians will each discuss their work, in turn, with the other …
Friday 31 October. 7:00pm (doors open for coffee from 6:30)
Vale & Downland Museum, Wantage. Tickets: £10
In the first-half talk, Professor Gary Sheffield, the author of A Short History of the First World War’ (published September 2014) offers a guide through the minefield of arguments and evidence on the government’s decision to join in the seminal catastrophe of the Twentieth Century, arguing that it was, for Britain, a war of national survival.
Professor Sheffield holds the Chair of War Studies at the University of Wolverhampton. One of the UK’s leading military historians, he specialises in the Great War. His most recent book is Command and Morale: The British Army on the Western Front, 1914-1918 (Praetorian Press, 2014); and A Short History of the First World War is published by Oneworld in September 2014. A local author, Gary Sheffield is advising the UK government and the Army on the First World War centenary.
Gary is joined in discussion by Saul David.
And then the tables are turned …
Saul David’s 100 Days to Victory is a totally original, utterly engaging account of the Great War – the first book to tell the story of the “war to end all wars” through the events of 100 key days between 1914 and 1918. Saul shows vividly how the war reached beyond the battlefield, touching upon events and lives which shaped the conduct and outcome of the conflict.
A 360° portrait, 100 Days to Victory sheds light on a global conflict that stretched east from the shores of Britain to the marshes of Iraq, and south from the forests of Russia to the bush of German East Africa. Throughout his gripping narrative we hear the voices of men and women both eminent and ordinary, some who were spectators on the Home Front, others- including Saul David’s own family – who were deeply embroiled in epic battles the changed the world forever.
100 DAYS TO VICTORY is the work of a great historian and supreme story teller. Most importantly, it is also an enthralling tribute to a generation whose sacrifice should never be forgotten.
Saul David is Professor of War Studies at the University of Buckingham and the bestselling author of the novels Zulu Hart and Hart of Empire, as well as several critically-acclaimed history books, including The Indian Mutiny: 1857 (shortlisted for the Westminster Medal for Military Literature), Zulu: The Heroism and Tragedy of the Zulu War of 1879 (a Waterstone’s Military History Book of the Year), Victoria’s Wars: The Rise of Empire and, most recently, All the King’s Men. He regularly appears on television and radio.
Saul is joined in conversation by Gary.