Jeremy Black is professor emeritus of history at Exeter University and a 2018 Templeton Fellow of the Foreign Policy Research Institute. His many books on modern war include The Age of Total War, A Century of Conflict: War, 1914–2014, and War and the World, 1450–2000.
While reading _The World at War, 1914-1945_, by the British academic Jeremy Black, readers will get a strong impression of what British universities are trying to achieve with their history courses. Certainly, there are specific events of the 1914-45 period that are named, of which more later, but what stands out is the author's willingness to foreground the methods British universities use to study history. This book explains the different levels on which war operates: strategic, operational, and tactical. Also, Black explains how history itself is influenced by national, geographic, economic, governmental, and individual views.
Jeremy Black’s latest book, The World at War, 1914–1945, engages with recent formulations that treat the two World Wars as part of one unified historical dynamic. . . . The strength of the book lies in its challenge to see the period 1914–45 in ways different from how scholars and popular culture normally present it. . . . Whether or not the men of 1942 understood themselves as finishing the work of their fathers in 1915 may, as The World at War, 1914–1945 challenges us to consider, be the wrong question to ask. Instead readers might ask whether they understood the irony that their imperial service represented, in the wider scheme of history, a critical
element in bringing about the end of empires.
[A] concise study from a master of his craft, able to convey the ‘big picture’ while delving as necessary down into the weeds. . . . Black’s concluding chapter is a taut summary of this dreadful half-century.