24 August 1939: The fate of the world is hanging in the balance. Hitler has ambitions to invade Poland and hopes Stalin will now help him. The West must try to stop him. If they don't, world war will result.
In this dramatic account Richard Overy re-creates hour-by-hour the last days of peace in 1939, as politicians and the public braced themselves for a war they feared might spell the end of European civilization.
Nothing was predictable or inevitable. The West hoped that Hitler would see sense if they stood firm. Hitler was convinced the West would back down. The one constant feature was the determination of Poland to fight against the armed might of Germany.
Countdown to War brings to life a defining moment in the history of the twentieth century.
- 4 août 1939 : le destin du monde se joue. Hitler conçoit le projet d'envahir la Pologne et espère le soutien de Staline. Les puissances de l'Ouest doivent l'en empêcher. Si elles ne le font pas, c'est la guerre.Voici le récit, bref et percutant, des derniers jours de paix de 1939, alors que les politiques et les opinions publiques redoutent une guerre dans laquelle ils craignent de voir disparaître la civilisation européenne. Comme le montre Richard Overy, l'issue n'était ni totalement prévisible ni totalement inéluctable. Moments d'hésitation et de confrontation, rôle des services secrets, c'est un scénario dramatique que reconstitue ici l'auteur, avec, au coeur du tableau, la Pologne, déterminée à affronter l'ennemi allemand.
- Né en 1947, Richard Overy a enseigné à Cambridge et à Londres. Il est aujourd'hui professeur d'histoire contemporaine à l'université d'Exeter. Spécialiste de la Seconde Guerre mondiale et du IIIe Reich, il est l'auteur de plus de vingt livres, dont, traduit en français, un Atlas historique du IIIe Reich (Autrement, 1999).
Des milliers de bombes furent déversées sur l'Europe pendant la guerre faisant plus de 600 000 morts et un million de blessés. En France, où l'on dénombre le plus fort tonnage de bombes larguées, succèdent aux raids de la Luftwaffe, les bombardements alliés soumis à une technologie encore imprécise. Soixante-dix ans après, l'historien Richard Overy interroge : fallait-il bombarder l'Europe, que l'on soit allié ou nazi ? et répond aux questions encore en suspens : pourquoi les démocraties ont-elles accepté ces bombardements inimaginables en 1939, comment ont-ils été légitimés ?
Dans des pages passionnantes, Overy raconte ainsi la guerre, vue du ciel, rappelle les responsabilités des uns et autres, la froide indifférence des décisions militaires et donne en cette année mémorielle un livre souvent bouleversant et toujours instructif.
Le Troisième Reich est le nom qu'Hitler et le parti nazi donnèrent à cette dictature qui vit le jour en 1933 et se termina, douze ans plus tard, par la destruction totale de l'Allemagne et le suicide d'Hitler.
Symbolisé par le personnage emblématique et messianique du Führer, le Troisième Reich fut l'une des périodes centrales de l'ère moderne. Après ses premiers balbutiements dans les années 20, le mouvement d'Hitler parvint à dominer la société allemande dans les années 30, provoquant sa militarisation, la naissance d'un appareil de terreur d'Etat et une politique de discrimination violente contre les opposants politiques, les "asociaux" (tziganes, homosexuels) et surtout les Juifs.
L'histoire du Reich se caractérise par des annexions territoriales, une guerre totale et un génocide. Le résultat fut la défaite complète de l'Allemagne et l'anéantissement de millions d'Européens. Un drame historique sans précédent qui hante encore l'Allemagne moderne. Chroniques du Troisième Reich décrit la montée, l'apogée et la chute du pouvoir nazi via une narration fascinante, enrichie de citations tirées de documents, courriers, journaux intimes et témoignages oraux.
De nombreuses photos d'époque illustrent le texte ; des encadrés explorent en détail nombre des aspects essentiels du Troisième Reich. Ouvrage faisant autorité, informatif, superbement illustré et écrit par un éminent spécialiste de la période, Chroniques du Troisième Reich anime de manière saisissante la réalité sanglante de la guerre, des conquêtes et du génocide. En un mot, un compagnon de route accessible pour comprendre une période complexe et difficile de l'histoire de l'Europe contemporaine.
The Battle of Britain tells the extraordinary story of one of the pivotal events of the Second World War - the struggle between British and German air forces in the late summer and autumn of 1940. Exposing many of the myths surrounding the conflict, the book provides answers to important questions: how close did Britain really come to invasion? What were Hitler and Churchill's motives? And what was the battle's real effect on the outcome of the war? Told with great clarity and objectivity, this is a superb introduction to a defining moment in our history.
'No individual British victory after Trafalgar was more decisive in challenging the course of a major war than was the Battle of Britain ... In his carefully argued, clearly explained and impressively documented book ... Richard Overy is at pains to dispose of the myths and expose the real history of what he does not doubt was a great British victory ... the best historical analysis in readable form which has yet appeared on this prime subject' Noble Frankland, The Times Literary Supplement
Cette première partie de l'ensemble consacré aux années 1939-1943 de la Seconde Guerre mondiale étudie d'abord la période où les puissances de l'Axe règnent en maîtres.
En un peu plus de deux années, l'Allemagne, l'Italie et le Japon soumettent la plus grande partie du continent européen, s'enfoncent profondément dans le territoire de l'Union soviétique et expulsent les Alliés hors du Pacifique et de l'Asie du Sud-Est. Ce volume s'achève au moment où les Alliés réussissent enfin à enrayer l'avancée ennemie et même à regagner du terrain. La Seconde Guerre mondiale, Volume 1 : 1939-1943 est illustré de plus de 200 photographies et de 24 documents rares reproduits en fac-similés.
Parmi ceux-ci : directive numéro 1, l'Allemagne ordonne l'invasion de la Pologne. déclenchant le processus qui fait basculer le monde entier dans la guerre, le célèbre discours de juin 1940 de Winston Churchill, avec ses annotations - " ceci fut notre heure de gloire. ", notes manuscrites du discours du général de Gaulle le 18 juin 1940 à la radio - " la France a perdu une bataille. mais elle n'a pas perdu la guerre, brouillon avec corrections manuscrites du discours dit du " jour de l'infamie prononcé par le président Roosevelt devant le congrès américain.
@00000400@Richard Overy sets out in @00000373@Blood and Ruins@00000155@ to recast the way in which we view the Second World War and its origins and aftermath. He argues that this was the 'last imperial war', a violent end to almost a century of global imperial expansion which reached its peak in the territorial ambitions of Italy, Germany and Japan in the 1930s and early 1940s, before descending into the largest and costliest war in human history and the end, after 1945, of all territorial empires.@00000163@@00000400@How war on a huge scale was fought, supplied, paid for, supported by mass mobilization, and morally justified forms the heart of this new account. Above all, Overy explains the bitter cost for those involved in fighting, and the exceptional level of crime and atrocity that marked the war and its aftermath. This war was as deadly for civilians as it was for the military, a war to the death over the future of the global order. @00000163@@00000400@@00000373@Blood and Ruins@00000155@ is a masterpiece from of one of the great historians of the Second World War, which will compel us to view the war in novel and unfamiliar ways. Thought-provoking, original and challenging, @00000373@Blood and Ruins@00000155@ sets out to understand the war anew.@00000163@
The Allied victory in 1945 - though comprehensive - was far from inevitable. By 1942 almost the entire resource of continental Europe were in German hands and Japan had wiped out the western colonial presence in Asia. Democracy appeared to have had its day. In this remarkable study, Richard Overy provides a reinterpretation of the war through an account of the decisive military campaigns that created the astonishing revival in Allied fortunes. He also explores the deeper factors that determined success and failure: industrial stength, fighting ability, the skills of leaders and the moral contrasts between the two sides. Today the modern world is once more in the throes of painful transformation. It is essential to establish why and how the last great way was won. Richard Overy casts a brilliant light on the most important turning-point of the modern age.
British intellectual life between the wars stood at the heart of modernity. The combination of a liberal, uncensored society and a large educated audience for new ideas made Britain a laboratory for novel ways to understand the world. The Morbid Age opens a window onto this creative but anxious era, the golden age of the public intellectual and scientist: Arnold Toynbee, Aldous and Julian Huxley, H. G. Wells, Marie Stopes and a host of others. Yet, as Richard Overy argues, a striking characteristic of so many of the ideas that emerged from this new age - from eugenics to Freud's unconscious, to modern ideas of pacifism and world government - was the fear that the West was facing a possibly terminal crisis of civilization.
The modern era promised progress of a kind, but it was overshadowed by a growing fear of decay and death, an end to the civilized world and the arrival of a new Dark Age - even though the country had suffered no occupation, no civil war and none of the bitter ideological rivalries of inter-war Europe, and had an economy that survived better than most. The Morbid Age explores how this strange paradox came about. Ultimately, Overy shows, the coming of war was almost welcomed as a way to resolve the contradictions and anxieties of this period, a war in which it was believed civilization would be either saved or utterly destroyed.
"Overy's book is easily the best account of Europe's descent into...death and destruction." --Evening Standard (London) A brilliantly concise narrative of the days leading to the outbreak of history's greatest conflagration, 1939 takes readers hour by hour through the nail-biting decisions that determined the fate of millions. Richard Overy, a leading historian of the period, masterfully recreates the jockeying for advantage that set Europe's greatest powers on a collision course. Would Stalin join Hitler in a bid to divide Poland and flout the West? Would Britain and France succeed in forcing Germany to reason? And how far would a defiant Poland push its claim to exist? In the summer of 1939, the course of events was anything but assured, as this exceptionally absorbing book drives home.
No individual British victory after Trafalgar was more decisive in challenging the course of a major war than was the Battle of Britain ... In his carefully argued, clearly explained and impressively documented book ... Richard Overy is at pains to dispose of the myths and expose the real history of what he does not doubt was a great British victory ... the best historical analysis in readable form which has yet appeared on this prime subject' Noble Frankland, The Times Literary Supplement
The ultimate history of the Blitz and bombing in the Second World War, from Wolfson Prize-winning historian and author Richard Overy The use of massive fleets of bombers to kill and terrorize civilians was an aspect of the Second World War which continues to challenge the idea that Allies specifically fought a 'moral' war. For Britain, bombing became perhaps its principal contribution to the fighting as, night after night, exceptionally brave men flew over occupied Europe destroying its cities.
The Bombing War radically overhauls our understanding of the War. It is the first book to examine seriously not just the most well-known parts of the campaign, but the significance of bombing on many other fronts - the German use of bombers on the Eastern Front for example (as well as much newly discovered material on the more familiar 'Blitz' on Britain), or the Allied campaigns against Italian cities.
The result is the author's masterpiece - a rich, gripping, picture of the Second World War and the terrible military, technological and ethical issues that relentlessly drove all its participants into an abyss.
'Magnificent ... must now be regarded as the standard work on the bombing war ... It is probably the most important book published on the history of he second world war this century' Richard J Evans, Guardian 'Monumental ... this is a major contribution to one of the most controversial aspects of the Second World War ... full of new detail and perspectives ... hugely impressive' James Holland, Literary Review 'This tremendous book does what the war it describes signally failed to do. With a well-thought-out strategy and precision, it delivers maximum force on its objectives ... The result is a masterpiece of the historian's art' The Times 'It is unlikely that a work of this scale, scope and merit will be surpassed' Times Higher Education 'What distinguishes Mr Overy's account of the bombing war from lesser efforts is the wealth of narrative detail and analytical rigour that he brings to bear' Economist 'Excellent ... Overy is never less than an erudite and clear-eyed guide whose research is impeccable and whose conclusions appear sensible and convincing even when they run against the established trends' Financial Times 'Hard to surpass. If you want to know how bombing worked, what it did and what it meant, this is the book to read' Times Literary Supplement About the author:
Richard Overy is the author of a series of remarkable books on the Second World War and the wider disasters of the twentieth century. The Dictators: Hitler's Germany, Stalin's Russia won both the Wolfson Prize for History and the Hessell-Tiltman Prize. He is Professor of History at the University of Exeter. Penguin publishes 1939: Countdown to War, The Morbid Age, Russia's War, Interrogations, The Battle of Britain and The Dictators. He lives in London.
RUSSIA'S WAR is the epic account of the greatest military encounter in human history. In a vivid, often shocking narrative, Richard Overy describes the astounding events of 1941-45 in which the Soviet Union, after initial catastrophes, destroyed Hitler's Third Reich and shaped European history for the next half Century.
World War Two was the most devastating conflict in recorded human history. It was both global in extent and total in character. It has understandably left a long and dark shadow across the decades. Yet it is three generations since hostilities formally ended in 1945 and the conflict is now a lived memory for only a few. And this growing distance in time has allowed historians to think differently about how to describe it, how to explain its course, and what subjectsto focus on when considering the wartime experience. For instance, as World War Two recedes ever further into the past, even a question as apparently basic as when it began and ended becomes less certain. Was it 1939, when the war in Europe began? Or the summer of 1941, with the beginning of Hitlers war against the Soviet Union? Or did it become truly global only when the Japanese brought the USA into the war at the end of 1941? And what of the long conflict in East Asia, beginning with the Japanese aggression in China in the early 1930s andonly ending with the triumph of the Chinese Communists in 1949? In The Oxford Illustrated History of World War Two a team of leading historians re-assesses the conflict for a new generation, exploring the course of the war not just in terms of the Allied response but also from the viewpoint of the Axis aggressor states. Under Richard Overys expert editorial guidance, the contributions take us from the genesis of war, through the action in the major theatres of conflict by land, sea, and air, to assessments of fighting power and military andtechnical innovation, the economics of total war, the culture and propaganda of war, and the experience of war (and genocide) for both combatants and civilians, concluding with an account of the transition from World War to Cold War in the late 1940s. Together, they provide a stimulating and thought-provoking newinterpretation of one of the most terrible and fascinating episodes in world history.
A short, brilliant account of the birth of the RAF for the centenary of its foundingThe dizzying pace of technological change in the early 20th century meant that it took only a little over ten years from the first flight by the Wright Brothers to the clash of fighter planes in the Great War. A period of terrible, rapid experiment followed to gain a brief technological edge. By the end of the war the British had lost an extraordinary 36,000 aircraft and 16,600 airmen.The RAF was created in 1918 as a revolutionary response to this new form of warfare - a highly contentious decision (resisted fiercely by both the army and navy, who had until then controlled all aircraft) but one which had the most profound impact, for good and ill, on the future of warfare.Richard Overy's superb new book shows how this happened, against the backdrop of the first bombing raids against London and the constant emergency of the Western Front. The RAF's origins were as much political as military and throughout the 1920s still provoked bitter criticism. Published to mark the centenary of its founding this is an invaluable book, filled with new and surprising material on this unique organization.
From global wars to the digital revolution, this title lets you explore the world-changing events of the 20th century. It presents the history, the events, the people and the political and cultural milestones that have shaped our world using a fresh approach.
'A world-class scholar at the height of his powers . everything is deftly handled - from the German-Soviet pact to the Yalta Conference, from Babi-Yar to the Katyn massacre - without holding up the sweeping narrative' Orlando Figes, The Times In the course of human history there has probably been no more terrible place than Eastern Europe in 1941-5. Estimates of total Soviet military and civilian deaths in the period now stand at more than 25 million. In Russia's War, Richard Overy re-creates the Soviet Union's apocalyptic struggle against Germany from the point of view both of the troops and of the ordinary civilians.
'A dramatic and exciting tale . His set-piece descriptions of such visions of Hell as Stalingrad, the 900-day siege of Leningrad and the crucial battle of Kursk are as fascinating as they are horrifying' Alan Judd, Sunday Times 'Masterly . a vivid account' Robert Service, Independent 'Overy is a first-class military historian . He writes concisely and says what he means to say . Now, we have an authoritative British account that understands both sides, without illusions' Norman Stone, Spectator 'Excellent . Overy tackles this huge, complex and multifaceted story with the vital gifts of clarity and brevity' Antony Beevor, Literary Review
Half a century after their deaths, the dictatorships of Stalin and Hitler still cast a long and terrible shadow over the modern world. They were the most destructive and lethal regimes in history, murdering millions. They fought the largest and costliest war in all history.