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December 15, 2013
Margaret MacMillan
Author, "The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914"
Margaret MacMillan BIO:
Margaret MacMillan was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1943. She received a B.A. in history at the University of Toronto. She received a Ph.D. at Oxford and graduated in 1974. In1975 she became a professor of history at Ryerson University of Toronto. In 2002 she became the Provost at Trinity College, Toronto. She is currently professor of international history at Oxford, and Warden of St. Antony’s College. She is an Officer of the Order of Canada and a fellow at the Royal Society of Literature and lives in Oxford, England.

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Info: Our guest is historian and author, Margaret MacMillan. She discusses her latest historical narrative titled, “The War that Ended Peace: The Road to 1914.” She describes in detail the assassination in 1914 of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. She cites reasons as to why his death led to the outbreak of World War I. MacMillan realized she could not simply start at 1914 to begin her chronicle. She said the “temptation with history is you always go back and back.” She establishes a context beginning in the 1890s to explain some underlying causes for an imminent war. In addition, she discusses America’s reluctance to enter World War I and its subsequent role in the conflict. She talks about the fall of many old European empires and how the map of Europe dramatically changed when the war ended. She profiles colorful royal characters in Europe during the war including Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany, Czar Nicholas II of Russia, and King Edward V of England. MacMillan also talks about how her family immigrated to Canada from England after World War II broke out. She discusses her writing style and how historians decide what to include and what to omit.

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