In Britain we have lost touch with the Great War. Our overriding sense now is of a meaningless, futile bloodbath in the mud of Flanders -- of young men whose lives were cut off in their prime for no evident purpose. But by reducing the conflict to personal tragedies, however moving, we have lost the big picture: the history has been distilled into poetry. In TheLong Shadow, critically acclaimed author David Reynolds seeks to redress the balance by exploring the true impact of 1914-18 on the 20th century. Some of the Great War's legacies were negative and pernicious but others proved transformative in a positive sense. Exploring big themes such as democracy and empire, nationalism and capitalism and re-examining the differing impacts of the War on Britain, Ireland and the United States,TheLong Shadowthrows light on the whole of the last century and demonstrates that 1914-18 is a conflict that Britain, more than any other nation, is still struggling to comprehend.
Stunningly broad in its historical perspective, The Long Shadowis a magisterial and seismic re-presentation of the Great War.
David Reynolds won the Wolfson Prize in 2004 for his superb book on Churchill, and is the author of Summits (2007) and most recently America: Empire of Liberty (2009). He has made critically acclaimed films and series for both BBC4 and BBC2 including films on Churchill and Attlee.