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World War II

The enormous loss of life and physical destruction caused by the First World War led people to hope that there would never be another such catastrophe. How then did it come about that there was a Second World War causing twice the 30 million deaths and many times more destruction as had been caused in the previous conflict? In this Very Short Introduction, Gerhard L. Weinberg provides an introduction to the origins, course, and impact of the war on those who fought and the ordinary citizens who lived through it. Starting by looking at the inter-war years and the German invasion of Poland in September 1939, he examines how the war progressed by examining a number of key events, including the war in the West in 1940, Barbarossa, The German Invasion of the Soviet Union, the expansion of Japan's war with China, developments on the home front, and the Allied victory from 1944-45. Exploring the costs and effects of the war, Weinberg concludes by considering the long-lasting mark World War II has left on society today. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Product Details

Table of Contents

1. The Inter-war years ; 2. The Second World War begins ; 3. War in the West 1940 ; 4. Barbarossa: the German invasion of the Soviet Union ; 5. Japan expands its war with China ; 6. The turning tide: fall 1942-spring 1944 ; 7. Developments on the home front and in technical and medical fields ; 8. Allied victory 1944-45 ; Further reading ; Index

About the Author

Born in Hanover, Germany in 1928, Gerhard L. Weinberg spent from 1939 until September 1940 in England. He moved to the USA and in 1944. He worked on the War Documentation Project, establishing the project for microfilming and studying captured German documents. He has taught at the Universities of Kentucky, Michigan, and North Carolina, retiring in 1999. Weinberg has held numerous positions in professional organizations and has served on and chaired a number of US government advisory committees. His books have earned him a number of prizes, fellowships, and two honorary doctoral degrees.

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