Shortest History Of Germany, The

Author(s): HAWES, James
ISBN13/Barcode: 9781910400739

Waterstones Non-Fiction Book of the Month in April 2018

The West is in full retreat. The Anglo-Saxon powers, great and small, withdraw into fantasies of lost greatness. Populists all over Europe cry out that immigration and globalisation are the work of a nefarious System, run by unseen masters with no national loyalties. From the Kremlin, Tsar Vladimir watches his Great Game line up, while the Baltic and Vizegrad states shiver — and everyone looks to Berlin. But are the Germans really us, or them? This question has haunted Europe ever since Julius Caesar invented the Germani in 58 BC.
How Roman did Germania ever become? Did the Germans destroy the culture of Rome, or inherit it? When did they first drive east, and did they ever truly rule there? How did Germany become, for centuries, a power-vacuum at the heart of Europe? How was Prussia born? Did Bismarck unify Germany or conquer it? Where are the roots of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich? Why did it lose? By what miracle did a better Germany arise from the rubble? Is Germany now the last Western bastion of industrial prosperity and rational politics? Or are the EU and the Euro merely window-dressing for a new German hegemony?
This fresh, illuminating and concise new history makes sense of Europe’s most admired and feared country. It’s time for the real story of Germany. 

"Brexit and Trump have given this sweeping story of Germany's struggles with its demons an urgent topicality. For as Hawes knows better than anyone, if there is a future for liberal democracy, it will be a German one"  — Nick Cohen, author of WHAT'S LEFT


Availability: More than 50 In stock

  • Full Description
  • Bibliographic Information
  • Reviews
  • Add Review
  • Tags


  • "This is Germany as you've never known it: a bold thesis; an authoritative sweep and an exhilarating read. Agree or disagree, this is a must for anyone interested in how Germany has come to be the way it is today." 
    Professor Karen Leeder, University of Oxford
  • "Certainly the most comprehensive and vivid history anyone could expect to find at that length… I don't know of a better short history of this great country." —Philip Pullman
  • "His demolition job is performed with wit and finesse, and his book is full of enlightening surprises … [Hawes] is an admirable guide, leading us through this tangled intellectual copse." 
    The Times
  • "Amusing and intelligent throughout…The tone of the narrative is pitch-perfect" 
James Hawes

As an infant, James Hawes was often pushed in his pram by the sister of the great German historian and newspaper-editor, Joachim C. Fest; he read German at Oxford, then did a PhD in German at UCL, where his mother had also read German. He is married to a Prussian aristocrat whose family lands were so far east they are now, unfortunately, in Russia. He has published a biography of Kafka (“Absolutely brilliant and utterly infuriating” – Guardian) and “Englanders & Huns”, the real story of the fatal Anglo-German antagonism (“full of enlightening surprises” – The Times). In May-August 2015 the Bonn City Museum hosted a major exhibition based on his rediscovery of the tale of how Queen Victoria’s cook was slain by Bismarck’s future son-in-law designate in Bonn in 1865.

Additional Information

ISBN13/Barcode 9781910400739
ISBN10 1910400734
Author HAWES, James
Binding Paperback
Date Published 24 Mar 2018
Frequency No
Report Date N/A
Pages 226
Publisher Old Street Publishing

Write Your Own Review

You're reviewing: Shortest History Of Germany, The

How do you rate this product? *

  1 star 2 stars 3 stars 4 stars 5 stars

Product Tags

Use spaces to separate tags. Use single quotes (') for phrases.