All Against All

Paul Jankowski

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During the winter between November 1932 and April 1933, domestic passions around the world colluded to drive governments toward a war few of them wanted and none of them could control. But how? And why? Historian Paul Jankowski finds the answer in collective mentalities and popular beliefs as much as any rational calculus called "national interest." Over these six months, collective delusions filled the air. Whether in liberal or authoritarian regimes, mass participation had arrived and the crowd became a hero. Hitler came to power; Japan invaded Jehol and left the League of Nations; Mussolini looked towards Africa; Roosevelt was elected; France changed governments three times; and the victors of 1918 acrimoniously fell out over war debts, arms, currency, tariffs, and Germany. As he weaves together the stories of the seemingly disparate influences that conspired to lead the world to war, Jankowski offers a cautionary tale, and not just for Western democracies. More than populism or authoritarianism, global fragmentation fills these pages. Nations turned their backs on one another, amid calls of "beggar-thy-neighbor" and "every;man for himself." We do not know where the same process is leading us today, but we do know that in the 1930s it culminated with the Second World War. Book jacket.

ISBN: 9781781256978
Publication Date: 02-Jul-2020
Publisher: Profile Books Limited