A History of Remembering and Forgetting
The Conclusion outlines the extent to which this study differs from much of the recent historiography. It shows how contemporaries’ attitudes to war were frequently separable from their support for a German nation. At the same time, it argues that subjects’ linkage of patriotism, nationalism, and warfare (or myths of war), when it did occur, was often of secondary importance and was rarely perceived to be problematic. What was of greater significance was the fact that wars had become more threatening, lasting longer and entailing greater financial and human cost, and they had become participatory in nature (or an affair of the Volk), requiring conscription or levées en masse. In these circumstances, the most obvious question—which differs from those posed by recent studies—is why there was so little resistance to war in the German lands after the cataclysm of the years of conflict between 1792 and 1815.
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