Events

International Communism and the Origins of World War II

Hosted by the Department of International History

Online Public Event, United Kingdom

Speakers

Professor Jonathan Haslam

Professor Jonathan Haslam

Sir Rodric Braithwaite

Sir Rodric Braithwaite

Dr David Motadel

Dr David Motadel

Dr Antony Best

Dr Antony Best

Chair

Professor Vladislav M. Zubok

Professor Vladislav M. Zubok

*** POSTPONED *** This event will no longer take place on 17 June. A new date will be announced soon.

Book Talk

The Spectre of War (Princeton University Press, 2021) looks at a subject we thought we knew—the roots of the Second World War—and upends our assumptions with a masterful new interpretation. Looking beyond traditional explanations based on diplomatic failures or military might, Jonathan Haslam explores the neglected thread connecting them all: the fear of Communism prevalent across continents during the interwar period. Marshalling an array of archival sources, including records from the Communist International, Haslam transforms our understanding of the deep-seated origins of World War II, its conflicts, and its legacy.

Meet our speakers and chair

Jonathan Haslam (@HaslamJonathan), is the George F. Kennan Professor in the School of Historical Studies at the Institute for Advanced Study. He is a fellow of the British Academy, a fellow of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and Professor Emeritus of the History of International Relations at the University of Cambridge. His books include Near and Distant Neighbors and Russia’s Cold War. He divides his time between Princeton, New Jersey and Cambridge, England.

Sir Rodric Braithwaite, GCMG, had a distinguished diplomatic career, and in 1988-92 was British ambassador to the Soviet Union, and then the Russian Federation. He also was the Prime Minister’s foreign policy adviser and chairman of the UK Joint Intelligence Committee. He is author of numerous books, including Moscow 1941: A city and its people at war. 

David Motadel (@DavidMotadel) is Associate Professor at the Department of International History, LSE. He works on the history of modern Europe and Europe’s entanglements with the wider world. Among Dr Motadel’s recent publications is the book Islam and Nazi Germany’s War (Harvard University Press, 2014).

Antony Best is Associate Professor at the Department of International History, LSE. Dr Best's main fields of research interests lie in Anglo-Japanese relations, the origins of the Pacific War; the international history of East Asia; the history of modern Japan, and intelligence and International history.

Vladislav M. Zubok is Professor of International History at the London School of Economics and Political Science. His books include A Failed Empire: the Soviet Union in the Cold War from Stalin to Gorbachev (University of North Carolina Press, 2007), Zhivago’s Children: The Last Russian Intelligentsia (Belknap Press, 2009), and The Idea of Russia. The Life and Work of Dmitry of Likhachev (I.B.Tauris, 2017). His next book Collapse: The Fall of the Soviet Union will be published in October 2021 by the Yale University Press.

More about this event

The Department of International History (@lsehistory) teaches and conducts research on the international history of Britain, Europe and the world from the early modern era up to the present day.

Sponsored by the Department's Conflict and Identity in Europe since the 18th Century and Contemporary International History and the Global Cold War research clusters.

Podcasts

We aim to make this event available as a podcast subject to receiving permission from the speaker/s to do this, and subject to no technical problems with the recording of the event. Podcasts are normally available within a week after the event. Podcasts and videos of other past events can be found in our website.

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event.

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