The Great War - was nothing learned?

at On-line

Time: This talk will be over Zoom – Meeting will open at 7:15pm (UK time) and the talk will start at 8pm (UK).

Speaker: Simon Gregor

Summary:   The way in which the history of the First World War is taught has changed with time – and most of us who went to school in the second part of the C20 grew up with the story that it was a futile war, in which commanders thoughtlessly squandered the lives of millions, doing the same thing over and over again with no discernible learning or development.  However, this interpretation is flawed; whilst there were certainly poor commanders and weak decisions at key points in the conflict, there were also many able politicians, generals, scientists and others who learned from experience and helped lead Britain and its allies to eventual victory.  In this talk, Simon will explore a range of technological and other developments which show just how radically things changed in four years, and how much was learned – from air power and fire power, through manufacturing and science, to infantry tactics and approaches to command.

Speaker Bio:   Simon has been passionate about history ever since studying the the First World War as a teenager.  He took his first degree (in English Literature) at the University of Cambridge, and completed his PhD (in history) at the University of Wolverhampton.  Originally from the UK, and a Londoner for most of his adult life, Simon worked for many years as a tour guide in Europe on the battlefields of the two World Wars, and on sites associated with the Cold War which followed.  He now lives in North America, but teaches history and English literature online, both for community/history groups and for Denman College (the education arm of the Women’s Institute).

Registration details will be made available in the members’ area of the website nearer the time of the talk.

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