A History of the Modern British Isles, 1914-1999: Circumstances, Events and Outcomes

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Wiley, Jun 8, 2000 - History - 414 pages
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This book presents a "total history" of the British Isles from the outbreak of the First World War through to the late 1990s. Written by one of the pioneers of twentieth-century history, the volume offers readers a multi-layered narrative combining social, economic, cultural and political perspectives on this era of significant and rapid change.

The author describes the "big events" that dominated British politics through the twentieth-century. He gives due weight to developments outside England in Scotland and Wales, and provides substantial coverage of the Irish question, highlighting the extent to which Ireland has been a preoccupation throughout the period. Alongside this narrative, Professor Marwick explains the underlying forces operating at each stage, linking these long-term "circumstances" to the political decisions of the time. This dual approach allows for penetrating analysis and reflection, helping to create for the reader a full picture of British life in the period. For instance, the book offers not only a discussion of the politics of the First and Second World Wars, but also an analysis of the economic and ideological repercussions of the wars and their consequences for British society at large. The volume also covers themes such as the cultural revolution, women's and gay liberation, economic recession and recovery, and social change in the 1990s.

Professor Marwick writes in an engaging way, suitable for general readers and students. Throughout he emphasizes the "reflexive quality" of the book, inviting readers to reflect on the nature of historical study and to participate actively in the historical enquiry.

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About the author (2000)

Professor Arthur Marwick is Hed of the History Department and was founding Professor of History at the Open University. He has held visiting professorships at The State University of New York at Buffalo, Stanford University, L'Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, Rhodes College, Memphis and the University of Perugia. His many books include The Sixties (1998), The Penguin Social History of Britain: British Society since 1945 (1996), The Deluge: British Society and the First World War (1991) and The Nature of History (1989) for which he is currently preparing a fourth edition.

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