The moments that it took Gavrilo Princip to step forward to the stalled car
and shoot dead Franz Ferdinand and his wife were perhaps the most fateful
of the modern era. An act of terrorism of staggering efficiency, it
fulfilled its every aim: it would liberate Bosnia from Habsburg rule and it
created a powerful new Serbia, but it also brought down four great empires,
killed millions of men and destroyed a civilization. What made a seemingly
prosperous and complacent Europe so vulnerable to the impact of this
assassination? In The Sleepwalkers Christopher Clark retells the story of
the outbreak of the First World War and its causes. Above all, it shows how
the failure to understand the seriousness of the chaotic, near genocidal
fighting in the Balkans would drag Europe into catastrophe. 'A
masterpiece.' Harold Evans, The New York Times Book Review 'The best book I
have read this year, or indeed for several years.' Simon Heffer, New
Statesman, Book of the Year 'It is hard to believe we will ever see a
better narrative of what was perhaps the biggest collective blunder in the
history of international relations.' Niall Ferguson 'The arguments [Clark]
sets out in this quite superb account of the causes of the First World War
are so compelling that they effectively consign the old historical
consensus to the bin . . . A masterpiece. It's not often that one has the
privilege of reading a book that reforges our understanding of one of the
seminal events of world history.' Simon Griffith, Daily Mail 'There will be
many books on the first world war as the 100th anniversary draws near, but
few as illuminating as this one.' Tony Barber, Financial Times, Books of
the Year 'Impeccably researched, provocatively argued and elegantly written
. . . for Clark, the statesmen of 1914 were 'sleepwalkers, watchful but
unseeing, haunted by dreams, yet blind to the reality of the horror they
were about to bring into the world'.' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times,
Books of the Year 'Brilliant . . . Clark changes the balance between the
great power dissension and the disputes on Europe's fault line, the
Balkans, by placing them centre stage.' The Times Higher Education

Christopher M. Clark—The Sleepwalkers - How Europe Went To War In 1914

  • 9780141027821