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History 287 History of the World Wars



Spring 2013
East Duke Room 204B
Wednesdays and Fridays, 10:05 11:20 AM

Dr. Andrew Byers
jab63@duke.edu
Office Hours: Before and after class, and by appointment in Carr 301

Course Overview:
The course examines the origins, conduct, and consequences of the world wars of twentieth century, as
well as the interwar period. Our explorations will focus on the nature and aims of the world wars, as well
as the practices, debates, and experiences of its participants. Probing the shifting ways in which military
force was used by and against soldiers, civilians, and entire societies, we will pay special attention to
wars ever-changing boundaries during the age of total war.

Assignments and Evaluation:
Class Participation: You are expected to attend all class sessions, do the assigned reading for
each session, and participate actively in class. I will take attendance at each class meeting and
evaluate your participation, assigning daily participation grades. If you have an unexcused
absence from class, or if you miss more than ten minutes of class for any reason, you will receive
a zero on that days participation grade. (20% of final grade)
Midterm and Final Exams: Each covering about half of the course. (2x20 =40% of final grade)
War Memoir Paper: You will write a paper of 1500-2000 words on one of the two books on war
experiences that we will read and discuss in class (you will choose which book to write on). The
first book is J ngers Storm of Steel (World War I), and the second is Leckies Helmet for My
Pillow (World War II). The papers are due at the start of class on the day the book is discussed in
class. Late assignments will be penalized by ten points for each day (or fraction of a day) they
are late with no exceptions. (20% of final grade)
Primary Source Document Analysis Paper: You will research, select, and analyze 2-4
thematically-related primary sources on some aspect of World War I, the Interwar period, or
World War II in a paper of 1500-2000 words. These primary sources can cover the personal
experiences of individuals, combat, diplomacy and international relations, the role of women,
propaganda, or many other topics. We will discuss this assignment in greater detail later in the
course. Due before class on April 24 (the last day of class). Late assignments will be penalized
by ten points for each day (or fraction of a day) they are late with no exceptions. (20% of final
grade)
Grading Scale:
A 93 100
A- 90 92
B+ 87 89
B 83 86
B- 80 82
C+ 77 79
C 73 76
C- 70 72
D+ 67 69
D 63 66
D- 60 62
F 59 or below

Course Policies:
No Electronics in Class: Please do not use laptops, cell phones, or other electronic devices
during class. If you have a special need that requires the use of such a device, please see me.
Plagiarism and Cheating: You are expected to adhere to the Duke University Community
Standard at all times. You will receive a zero on any exam or paper assignment in which
cheating or plagiarism has occurred. Violators will also be referred to the Associate Dean for
J udicial Affairs within the Dean of Students Office.


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Required Reading:
The following required books have been ordered for class and are available at the Duke
University Bookstore. These books are also available through Dukes Libraries.
1. Hew Strachan, ed., The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War (Oxford and
New York: Oxford University Press, 2001).
2. Ernst J nger, Storm of Steel (New York: Penguin Books, 2004).
3. Robert Leckie, Helmet for My Pillow: From Parris Island to the Pacific (New York: Bantam
Books, 2010).
4. Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge
University Press, 2009).
All other readings, along with the syllabus and paper assignments, are available electronically on
the class Sakai site.


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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
PART 1: THE WORLD LEADING UP TO THE FIRST WORLD WAR
Friday,
J anuary 11 Course Introduction None
Wednesday,
J anuary 16 Crises, Alliances, and Preparations
Geoffrey Best, "The Militarization of European Society, 1870-1914," in The
Militarization of the Western World, ed., J ohn R. Gillis (New Brunswick:
Rutgers University Press, 1989), 13-29.
Brian Bond, War and Society in Europe, 1870-1970, Rev. ed. (Montreal and
Buffalo: McGill-Queens University Press, 1998), 40-99.
David Herrmann, The Arming of Europe and the Making of the First World
War (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996), 3-6, 199-232.
Friday,
J anuary 16 The Origins of the War
Charles S. Maier, The World at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century:
Crisis within Imperialism, in History of Humanity: Scientific and Cultural
Developments, Volume VII: The Twentieth Century, eds. Sarvepalli Gopal
and Sergei L. Tikhvinsky (Paris, 2008), 21-30.
Samuel R. Williamson, The Origins of the War, in The Oxford Illustrated
History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 9-25.
PART 2: THE GREAT WAR
Wednesday,
J anuary 23 Military Strategies (1)
J ohn Bourne, Total War I: The Great War, in Charles Townshend, ed., The
Oxford History of Modern War (Oxford, 2005), 117-137.
L.L. Farrar, J r., The Strategy of the Central Powers, 1914-1917, in The
Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford
1998), 26-38.
David French, The Strategy of the Entente Powers, 1914-1917, in The
Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford
1998), 54-65.
Friday,
J anuary 25 Military Strategies (2)
D.E. Showalter, Manoeuvre Warfare: The Eastern and Western Fronts, in
The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan
(Oxford 1998), 39-53.
R.J . Crampton, The Balkans, 1914-1918, in The Oxford Illustrated History
of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 66-79.
Robin Prior and Trevor Wilson, Eastern Front and Western Front, 1916-
1917, in The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew
Strachan (Oxford 1998), 179-190.
David Stevenson, War Aims and Peace Negotiations, in The Oxford
Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998),
204-215.

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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
Wednesday,
J anuary 30 Combat
Michael Howard, Men Against Fire: The Doctrine of the Offensive in 1914,
in Makers of Modern Strategy from Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age, ed. Peter
Paret (Princeton, 1986), 510-526.
David Stevenson, Cataclysm: The First World War as Political Tragedy (New
York, 2004), 145-177.
J ohn H. Morrow, The War in the Air, in The Oxford Illustrated History of the
First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 265-277.
Friday,
February 1 War Experiences (1)
Ernst J nger, Storm of Steel (New York: Penguin Books, 2004).
FIRST PAPER DUE PRIOR TO CLASS
Wednesday,
February 6 Global War
Ulrich Trumpener, Turkeys War, in The Oxford Illustrated History of the
First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 80-91.
David Killingray, The War in Africa, The Oxford Illustrated History of the
First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 92-103.
Hew Strachan, The First World War (London, 2005), 65-128.
Friday,
February 8 War at Sea
Paul Halpern, The War at Sea, in The Oxford Illustrated History of the First
World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 104-118.
B.J .C. McKercher, Economic Warfare, in The Oxford Illustrated History of
the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 119-133.
Holger H. Herwig, Total Rhetoric, Limited War: Germanys U-Boat
Campaigns 1917-1918, in Great War, Total War: Combat and Mobilization
on the Western Front, 1914-1918, eds. Roger Chickering and Stig Frster
(Cambridge, 2000), 189-206.
Wednesday,
February 13 War against Civilians (1)
Stephane Audoin-Rouzeau and Annette Becker, 14-18: Understanding the
Great War (New York, 2002), 45-90.
Isabel Hull, Absolute Destruction: Military Culture and the Practices of War in
Imperial Germany (Ithaca, 2005), 226-262.
Friday,
February 15 Home Fronts (1)
Hew Strachan, Economic Mobilization: Money, Munitions, and Machines, in
The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan
(Oxford 1998), 134-148.
J .M. Winter, Propaganda and the Mobilization of Consent, in The Oxford
Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998),
216-226.
J .A. Turner, The Challenges to Liberalism: The Politics of the Home Fronts,
in The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan
(Oxford 1998), 163-178.

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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
Wednesday,
February 20 Home Fronts (2)
Nancy K. Bristow, Making Men Moral: Social Engineering during the Great
War (New York/London, 1996), 91-135.
Gail Braybon, Women, War, and Work, in The Oxford Illustrated History of
the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 149-162.
Bianca Schoenberger, Motherly Heroines and Adventurous Girls: Red
Cross Nurses and Women Army Auxiliaries in the First World War, in
Home/Front: The Military, War and Gender in Twentieth-Century Germany,
eds. Karen Hagemann and Stefanie Schler-Springorum (Oxford, 2002), 87-
114.
Friday,
February 22 Victory and Defeat
David Trask, The Entry of the USA into the War and its Effects, in The
Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford
1998), 239-252.
Holger H. Herwig, The German Victories, 1917-1918, in The Oxford
Illustrated History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998),
253-264.
Tim Travers, The Allied Victories, 1918, in The Oxford Illustrated History of
the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 278-290.
Wilhelm Deist, The Military Collapse of the German Empire: The Military
Reality Behind the Stab-in-the-Back Myth, War in History 3 (1996): 186-207.
PART 3: THE INTERWAR PERIOD AND PREPARATIONS FOR THE NEXT WAR
Wednesday,
February 27 End of War, Beginning of Peace?
Zarah Steiner, The Peace Settlement, in The Oxford Illustrated History of
the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 291-304.
Modris Ekstein, Memory and the Great War, in The Oxford Illustrated
History of the First World War, ed. Hew Strachan (Oxford 1998), 305-318.
J ohn Darwin, After Tamerlane: The Global History of Empire (New York,
2008), 365-402.
Erez Manela, Dawn of a New Era: The Wilsonian Moment in Colonial
Contexts and the Transformation of World Order, 1917-1920, in Competing
Visions of World Order: Global Moments and Movements, 1880s-1930s, ed.
Sebastian Conrad and Dominic Sachsenmeier (New York, 2007), 121-149.
Friday, March
1 The "Interwar" Period
Hew Strachan, War and Society in the 1920s and 1930s, in Roger
Chickering and Stig Frster, eds., The Shadows of Total War: Europe, East
Asia, and the United States 1919-1939 (Cambridge, 2003), 35-54.
Ronald Spector, The Military Effectiveness of the US Armed Forces, 1919-
1939, in Military Effectiveness, Volume II: The Interwar Period, eds. Allan R.
Millett and Williamson Murray (Boston, 1988), 70-97.
Wilhelm Deist, The Road to Ideological War: Germany 1918-1945, in The
Making of Strategy: Rulers, States, and War, eds. Williamson Murray et al.
(Cambridge, 1994), 352-392, here 352-371.

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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
Wednesday,
March 6 The Road to War
Charles S. Maier, Stabilization, Crisis, and the Second World War, in
History of Humanity: Scientific and Cultural Developments, Volume VII: The
Twentieth Century, eds. Sarvepalli Gopal and Sergei L. Tikhvinsky (Paris,
2008), 31-44.
J ohn Darwin, After Tamerlane: The Global History of Empire (New York,
2008), 402-423.
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 10-51.
Friday, March
8 Midterm Exam None
Wednesday,
March 13 Spring Break -- No Class Meeting None
Friday, March
15 Spring Break -- No Class Meeting None
PART 4: THE SECOND WORLD WAR
Wednesday,
March 20 German Empire and Pursuit of War
J rgen Frster, From Blitzkrieg to Total War: Germanys War in Europe,
in A World At Total War: Global Conflict and the Politics of Destruction,
1937-1945, eds, Roger Chickering, Stig Frster, and Bernd Greiner
(Cambridge, 2005), 89-107.
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 104-133.
Williamson Murray, May 1940: Contingency and Fragility of the German
RMA, in MacGregor Knox and Williamson Murray, eds., The Dynamics of
Military Revolution 1300-2050 (Cambridge, 2002), 154-174.
Friday, March
22 The Holocaust
Robert Gellately, The Third Reich, the Holocaust, and Visions of Serial
Genocide, in Robert Gellately and Ben Kiernan, eds., The Specter of
Genocide: Mass Murder in Historical Perspective (Cambridge, 2003), 241-
264.
Ernst Klee, Willi Dressen, and Volker Riess, eds. "The Good Old Days": The
Holocaust as Seen by Its Perpetrators and Bystanders (Old Saybrook:
Konecky & Konecky, 1991), x-xxi, 155-171, 225-249.
Wednesday,
March 27 The Eastern Front
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 134-187.
Mark Edele and Michael Geyer. States of Exception: The Nazi-Soviet War
as a System of Violence, 19391945, in Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism
and Nazism Compared, eds. Michael Geyer and Sheila Fitzpatrick
(Cambridge, 2008), 345-395.

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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
Friday, March
29 Mobilization and Total War
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 248-283,
320-45.
Dennis Showalter, Global Yet Not Total: The U.S. War Effort and Its
Consequences, in A World at Total War: Global Conflict and the Politics of
Destruction, 1937-1945, eds. Roger Chickering, Stig Frster and Bernd
Greiner (Cambridge, 2005), 109-133.
Bernd Greiner, The Spirit of St. Louis: Mobilizing American Politics and
Society, 1937-1945, in A World at Total War: Global Conflict and the Politics
of Destruction, 1937-1945, eds. Roger Chickering, Stig Frster and Bernd
Greiner (Cambridge, 2005), 245-257.
Wednesday,
April 3 Women and the War
J ill Stephenson, The Home Front in Total War: Women in Germany and
Britain in the Second World War, in A World at Total War: Global Conflict
and the Politics of Destruction, 1937-1945, eds. Roger Chickering and
others. (Cambridge, 2005), 207-232.
J ohn Barber, Women in the Soviet War Effort, 1941-1945, in A World at
Total War: Global Conflict and the Politics of Destruction, 1937-1945, eds.
Roger Chickering and others (Cambridge, 2005), 233-244.
DAnn Campbell, Women in Combat: The World War Two Experience in
the United States, Great Britain, Germany, and the Soviet Union," Journal of
Military History 57 (1993): 301-323.
Friday, April 5
J apanese Empire and the Pacific War
(1)
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 52-73,
188-213.
Louise Young, J apans Wartime Empire in China, in The Shadows of Total
War: Europe, East Asia, and the United States 1919-1939, eds. Roger
Chickering and Stig Frster (Cambridge, 2003), 327-345.
Fujiwara Akira, The Nanking Massacre: An Interpretive Overview, in The
Nanking Atrocity, 1937-38: Complicating the Picture, ed. Bob Tadashi
Wakabayashi (New York, 2007), 29-54.
Wednesday,
April 10
J apanese Empire and the Pacific War
(2)
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 214-247.
J ohn W. Dower, War without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War
(New York, 1986), 262-290.
W.G. Beasley, Japanese Imperialism, 1894-1945 (Oxford, 1987), 220-250.
Friday, April 12 War Experiences (2)
Robert Leckie, Helmet for My Pillow: From Parris Island to the Pacific (New
York: Bantam Books, 2010).
SECOND PAPER DUE PRIOR TO CLASS
Wednesday,
April 17 Race War
J ohn W. Dower, War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War
(New York, 1986), 33-73, 77-93.
Omer Bartov, Savage War: German Warfare and Moral Choices in World
War II, in Omer Bartov, ed., Germanys War and the Holocaust (Ithaca,
2003), 3-32.

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DATE TOPIC READING ASSIGNMENTS
Friday, April 19 War against Civilians (2)
Michael Sherry, The Rise of American Air Power: The Creation of
Armageddon (New Haven, 1987), 301-330.
Richard Overy, Allied Bombing and the Destruction of German Cities, in
Roger Chickering, et al., eds., A World at Total War: Global Conflict and the
Politics of Destruction, 1937-1945 (Cambridge, 2005), 277-295.
Holger H. Herwig, Germany and the Battle of the Atlantic, in Roger
Chickering, et al., eds., A World at Total War: Global Conflict and the Politics
of Destruction, 1937-1945 (Cambridge, 2005), 71-87.
Wednesday,
April 24 The End of the War
Evan Mawdsley, World War II: A New History (Cambridge, 2009), 364-437.
PRIMARY SOURCE ANALYSIS PAPER DUE PRIOR TO CLASS
Friday, May 3,
7-10pm Final Exam None