- The Oxford Handbook of European History, 1914–1945
- List of contributors
- Introduction: Europe’s Age of Catastrophe in Context
- Belle Époque: Europe before 1914
- Societies at War, 1914–1918
- Total War: Family, Community, and Identity during the First World War
- The Left and the Revolutions
- The Economics of Total War and Reconstruction, 1914–1922
- The New Diplomacy and the New Europe, 1916–1922
- Nation States, Minorities, and Refugees, 1914–1923
- Remaking Europe after the First World War
- The Great Depression in Europe
- ‘A Low Dishonest Decade’?: War and Peace in the 1930s
- Interwar Crises and Europe’s Unfinished Empires
- Rural Society in Crisis
- Interwar Democracy and the League of Nations
- The Political ‘Left’ in the Interwar Period, 1924–1939
- Fascism and the Right in Interwar Europe: Interaction, Entanglement, Hybridity
- Social Policy, Welfare, and Social Identities, 1900–1950
- Discipline, Terror, and the State
- The Nationalization of the Masses
- Political Violence and Mass Society: A European Civil War?
- European Sexualities in the Age of Total War
- ‘America’ and Europe, 1914–1945
- European Integration, Human Rights, and Romantic Internationalism
- Wartime Economies, 1939–1945: Large and Small European States at War
- Axis Imperialism in the Second World War
- Everyday Life in Wartime Europe
- The Holocaust in European History
- Europe’s Civil Wars, 1941–1949
- Nation-Building and Moving People
- Europe, the War, and the Colonial World
- Power Relations during the Transition from Nazi to Post-Nazi Rule
- The Memory of Europe’s Age of Catastrophe, 1914–2014
Abstract and Keywords
This essay explores how Europeans experienced the First World War. Consent in wartime was generated from the bottom up rather than choreographed by the state. Civil society and commercial mass entertainment played a vital role in sustaining morale among civilians and the troops. Far from being alienated from each other, people in and out of uniform remained in constant communication. Moreover, the drive towards ‘total war’ broke down the barrier between military and non-military spheres and transformed enemy civilians into targets and one’s own civilians into an important resource. Atrocities were committed, people at the home front attacked from the air, civilians forced to flee their homes, soldiers brutalized and prisoners of war maltreated; and yet, the war cannot be described as an unmitigated demographic catastrophe. To be sure, it left a legacy of mass bereavement and a memory culture that endured long beyond the caesura of 1918.
Stefan Goebel, University of Kent.
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