The twentieth century in Europe witnessed some of the most brutish episodes in history. Yet it also saw incontestable improvements in the conditions of existence for most inhabitants of the continent - from rising living standards and dramatically increased life expectancy, to the virtual elimination of illiteracy, and the advance of women, ethnic minorities, and homosexuals to greater equality of respect and opportunity.
It was a century of barbarism and civilization, of cruelty and tenderness, of technological achievement and environmental spoliation, of imperial expansion and withdrawal, of authoritarian repression - and of individualism resurgent.
Covering everything from war and politics to social, cultural, and economic change, Barbarism and Civilization is by turns grim, humorous, surprising, and enlightening: a window on the century we have left behind and the earliest years of its troubled successor.
Bernard Wasserstein was born in London in 1948 and educated at Balliol and Nuffield Colleges, Oxford. He has taught at Sheffield, Oxford, Glasgow, and Brandeis Universities and at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Since 2003 he has been Harriet and Ulrich Meyer Professor of History at the University of Chicago. His many previous books include Britain and the Jews of Europe 1939-1945 and The Secret Lives of Trebitsch Lincoln (which won the Golden Dagger Award for Non-Fiction from the Crime Writers' Association).
1. Europe at 1914 ; 2. Europe at War 1914-1917 ; 3. Revolutionary Europe 1917-1921 ; 4. Recovery of the Bourgeiosie 1921-1929 ; 5. Depression and Terror 1929-1936 ; 6. Europe in the 1930s ; 7. Spiral into War 1936-1939 ; 8. Hitler Triumphant 1939-1942 ; 9. Life and Death in Wartime ; 10. End of Hitler's Europe 1942-1945 ; 11. Europe Partitioned 1945-1949 ; 12. West European Recovery 1949-1958 ; 13. Stalin and His Heirs 1949-1964 ; 14. Consensus and Dissent in Western Europe 1958-1973 ; 15. Europe in the 1960s ; 16. Strife in Communist Europe 1964-1985 ; 17. Stress in Liberal Europe 1973-1989 ; 18. The Collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe 1985-1991 ; 19. After the Fall 1991-2007 ; 20. Europe in the New Millennium ; Notes ; Bibliography ; Index