1913: In Search of the World Before the Great War

Today, 1913 is inevitably viewed through the lense of 1914: as the last years before a war that would shatter the global economic order and tear Europe apart, undermining its global pre-eminence. Our perspectives narrowed by hindsight, the world of that year is reduced to its most frivolous features—last summers in grand aristocratic residences—or its most destructive ones: the unresolved rivalries of the great European powers, the indifference of revolution, violence in the Balkans.

In this illuminating history, Charles Emmerson liberates the world of 1913 from this “ prelude to war ” narrative, and explores it as it was, in all its ichness and complexity. Traveling from Europe ’ s capitals, then at the height of their global reach, to the emerging metropolises of Canada and the United States, the imperial cities of sia and Africa, and the boomtowns of Australia and South America, he provides a panoramic view of a world crackling with possibilities, its future still undecided, its outlook still open.

The world in 1913 was more modern than we remember, more similar to our own times than we expect, more globalized than ever before. The Gold Standard underpinned global flows of goods and money, while mass migration reshaped the world ’ s human geography. Steamships and sub-sea cables encircled the earth, along with new technologies and new ideas. Ford ’ s first assembly line cranked to life in 1913 in Detroit. The Woolworth Building went up in New York. While Mexico was in the idst of bloody revolution, Winnipeg and Buenos Aires boomed. An era of petro-geopolitics opened in Iran. China appeared to be awaking from its imperial slumber. Paris celebrated itself as the ity of light—Berlin as the tow of electricity.

Full of fascinating characters, tories, and nsights, 1913: In Search of the World before the Great War brings a lost world vividly back to life, with provocative implications for how we understand our past and how we think about our future.
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Published May 28th 2013 by PublicAffairs (first published January 1st 2013
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gave it

It starts off in London, goes for a jaunt across the various old cities of urope, on to the New World cities, out to the est of the world, stops off to look at the " Twilight Powers " cities like Constantinople and Peking, and briefly pops back to London to consider what the next hundred years will bring for the British Empire.

gave it

1913 ( the year, not the nove) was Sunday for a long-lost world; I think, in 2019, we 're still somewhere in the middle of the eek that came after.

gave it

We understand that a macro-history like this can not cover all concerns, but Emmerson 's treatment of several areas was too superficial, including simplistic representation of colonial attitudes towards the indigenous, Sun Yat-Sen in China, and British Suffragetism.

gave it

2014 is the fiftee year anniversary of the epidemi of the third world war.

Each chapter is a separate portrait of a given city in 1913, that profiles its social and political life, recent history, and other events, along with trends needed for the prewar narrative.

What is urprising is that in a book looking at 1913 as the year before the war, the picture that emerges is more one of continuity than the author may have intended.

He hints at this in his epilog in that the supposed discontinuity between 1913 and the war may be ore of a construction and nostalgia than real.The concluding chapter, by the way, was far too little to add much to the bestselling.

gave it

https: //nwhyte.livejournal.com/3236402.htmlThe author worked alongside me in the International Crisis Group back in the early months of this century, and went on to greater thinktanky things; in this autobiography, he looks at 1913, the first years before the first world war, from the mindse of twenty-three great cities, starting and ending with London, but visiting the Americas, Asia, Africa, Australia and the whol of Europe en route.

gave it

These city profiles generally are tightly-written and informative, although a few were too short for my taste, particularly the chapter on Rome.

gave it

A good overview about the vanished world on the eve of the great war.

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