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The Centenary of Armistice - Cambridge Scholars Publishing

This month we will be observing the Centenary of the end of the First World War. On the 11th of November 1918 – the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" – an armistice was signed between the Allies and Germany that marked the end of over four years of warfare in Europe. Later formalised at the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919, Armistice Day has since become a national day of mourning and commemoration across much of the continent and beyond.

It is comfortable to believe that, in 100 years of scholarship, we know all there is to know about the Great War. However, as Keith Neilson has highlighted in a recent article, academic work about the war and its interpretation continues to evolve and grow. At Cambridge Scholars we are proud to contribute to this important body of scholarship, and we will be offering a 50% discount on our most recent titles on the war throughout the month. In addition, we are also delighted to be partnering with the British Commission for Military History to support their upcoming New Research in Military History Conference – click here to read more about our involvement. 

To redeem your discount, please enter the promotional code FWW18 during checkout. Please note that this is a time-limited offer that will expire on 1st December 2018.

This book investigates the story of 600 Black men from across North America and the Caribbean, who, in 1917, went to war in a labour unit, No. 2 Construction Battalion. Regarded then by senior Command as morally infectious, a century later they have become central actors in a powerful cultural myth, celebrated in folk tales, poetry, drama and text. Black Soldiers in a White Man’s War examines critically that mythical narrative. Based on service records of the 600 volunteers and 35 courts-martial in the unit, it probes the lives of these soldiers, who laboured in the forests of France during 1917 and 1918. Black Soldiers in a White Man’s War will shock some, but, for the majority of readers, it will present a fresh, vibrant portrait of a group of young Black men, who at a time of international crisis volunteered to fight the King’s enemies. It will also open readers to experiences these men faced as they returned to a post-war racist society.

The Great War against Eastern European Jewry, 1914-1920 focuses on the consequences that the First World War had on the Jews living in the notorious Pale of Settlement within the frontiers of the Tsarist Empire. The research is entirely based on a solid documentary study, consisting of the documents of the Joint Distribution Committee and references to many historiographic works. The Jewish communities experienced a personal tragedy within the general tragedy of war, as they were particularly “damaged”, not only by violence and persecutions – suffering from the pogroms of Cossacks and local populations – but also by the evacuations and expulsions ordered by the military. From this perspective, what happened during the Great War could be seen as an anticipation of the tragedy that affected Eastern European Jewry in the following decades.

From a Traditionalist perspective, the cultural history of the Modern Era amounts to the genesis of the Dark Age. The Traditionalist meta-historical narrative deconstructs the modernist myth of “historic progress” as an anti-intellectual superstition. It exposes the quintessential features of Modernity – namely, secular nihilism, historical materialism, socio-political egalitarianism, and collective narcissism – as structural inversions of Traditional values. The Sunset of Tradition and the Origin of the Great War follows the forgotten path of the philosophia perennis to trace the historic onset of the Dark Age. It clears away a century-deep deposit of “progressive” illusions and “politically-correct” axioms. The restored road of Traditional thought will lead a new generation of scholars to their rightful inheritance: an intellectual tabula rasa on which history can be written anew. 

William Orpen (1878-1931) was in 1917 appointed as an official war artist in France. He not only saw the Great War as a call to paint serious subject-matter—enabling him to break away from the constraints of society portraiture in London—but also as an opportunity to write. He was the only war artist to keep a written record of his wartime experience, published in 1921 as An Onlooker in France. In his Preface, Orpen rather too modestly states: “This book must not be considered as a serious work on life in France behind the lines, it is merely an attempt to record some certain little incidents that occurred in my own life there.” William Orpen, an Outsider in France: Painting and Writing World War One is a companion to this “attempt”. 


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