Peacemakers Six Months that Changed The World
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Peacemakers Six Months that Changed The World

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Between January and July 1919, after the war to end all wars, men and women from all over the world converged on Paris for the Peace Conference. At its heart were the leaders of the three great powers - Woodrow Wilson, Lloyd George and Clemenceau. Kings, prime ministers and foreign ministers with their crowds of advisers rubbed shoulders with journalists and lobbyists for a hundred causes - from Armenian independence to women's rights. Everyone had business in Paris that year - T.E. Lawrence, Queen Marie of Romania, Maynard Keynes, Ho Chi Minh. There had never been anything like it before, and there never has been since. For six extraordinary months the city was effectively the centre of world government as the peacemakers wound up bankrupt empires and created new countries. They pushed Russia to the sidelines, alienated China and dismissed the Arabs, struggled with the problems of Kosovo, of the Kurds, and of a homeland for the Jews. The peacemakers, so it has been said, failed dismally; failed above all to prevent another war. Margaret MacMillan argues that they have unfairly been made scapegoats for the mistakes of those who came later. They tried to be evenhanded, but their goals - to make defeated countries pay without destroying them, to satisfy impossible nationalist dreams, to prevent the spread of Bolshevism and to establish a world order based on democracy and reason - could not be achieved by diplomacy. This book offers a prismatic view of the moment when much of the modern world was first sketched out.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 592 pages
  • 130 x 196 x 42mm | 459.99g
  • Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • John Murray Publishers Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Revised ed.
  • 16pp illustrations, maps
  • 0719562376
  • 9780719562372
  • 112,522

Review quote

'A terrific piece of writing ... full of wonderful insights and portraits of the statesmen and women of the day' (listed among 'My Six Best Books' by Chris Patten) * Chris Patten, Daily Express * 'This is how to write history...so readable that it appeals as much to laymen who have never read a word of history as it does to specialists in the field' - Dan Snow ('My Six Best Books' column). * Daily Express * "Magnificent ... she gives a full, colourful and erudite description of the participants and their motives." Simon Heffer. * Literary Review * "A fascinating piece of history." Tony Blair. * Guardian * Exactly the sort of book I like: written with pace and flavoured with impudence based on solid scholarship. * Sunday Times * "Enthralling ... detailed, fair, unfailingly lively ... full of brilliant pen-portraits." Allan Massie. * Daily Telegraph * Every peacemaker sent to determine the future of Iraq should regard it as an essential piece of luggage * THE GUARDIAN * Deserving winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize, this pacey and racy account of the statesmen who reshaped the world at the Paris conference of 1919 puts the dash back into diplomatic history * THE INDEPENDENT Magazine * Margaret MacMillian deservedly won the 2002 Samuel Johnson Prize for this book that has been reprinted in timely fashion * Belgravia * Engagingly written and well-researched * Stand To Magazine * Lively, fascinating and provocative. * Choice *show more

About Margaret Macmillan

Margaret MacMillan has a doctorate from St Antony's College, Oxford. Formerly Provost of Trinity College and Professor of History, University of Toronto, she is now Warden of St Antony's College, Oxford. Peacemakers won the BBC Four Samuel Johnson Prize, the Duff Cooper Prize and the Hessell-Tiltman Prize.show more

Review Text

Lively, fascinating and provocative. Choiceshow more

Rating details

8,289 ratings
4.08 out of 5 stars
5 37% (3,052)
4 41% (3,359)
3 18% (1,473)
2 4% (307)
1 1% (98)
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