In this public lecture, Professor Maartje Abbenhuis argues for the necessity of integrating the experiences and perspectives of neutral, non-belligerent and subject communities in the history of the First World War, which is still so often cast as ‘Europe’s War’. Using examples from around the world, she shows how the transformation of the conflict into a ‘total war’ was a process, whose dynamics involved governments, communities, groups and individuals alike on a global and local scale. These dynamics also explain how fundamental the First World War was to shaping the contours of the highly violent twentieth century.

Maartje Abbenhuis is a Professor in History at the University of Auckland. She is an expert in European history, 1815-1918.

This lecture was hosted by the University of Auckland’s Faculty of Arts.

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Disclaimer: The ideas expressed in this lecture reflect the views of the lecturer and not necessarily the views of The Big Q. 

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