Jay Winter, the Charles J. Stille Professor of History and editor of the recently published three-volume “Cambridge History of the First World War,” recently spoke to YaleNews about how WWI has impacted the 20th century, what lessons can be learned from the conflict, and the emergence of a global history of the so-called “Great War.” The following is an edited version of that conversation.
One of your areas of study is the remembrance of war in the 20th century, such as memorial and mourning sites. What led you to study this topic?
My mother’s family was wiped out in the Holocaust, and its shadow haunted my childhood. Writing about mourning practices in the aftermath of the First World War was an indirect way of confronting indirectly part of my childhood. (more…)