The ruined Cloth Hall in Ypres after the Great War (Photo © In Flanders Fields Museum)

To End All Wars? - Legacies of WW1 conference in Ypres, August 2018

Posted on on 21 June 2018
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Leading historians are to discuss the aftermath and commemorative legacies of the First World War at a four-day conference in Ypres in August.

Under the title To End All Wars?, speakers will reflect on the flawed peace settlement of 1919, how the war and its consequences are remembered, and what meaning WW1 should have in the future as the Centenary nears its conclusion.

Topics include post-war reactions in Australia, East Asia, the Middle East, Ireland and the West Indies; the League of Nations; population displacement;  commemorative themes of the past century, and attempts at international justice.

The conference is jointly organised by the Ypres-based In Flanders Fields Museum and CEGESOMA, the Belgian research centre for 20th century conflict.

Among the speakers are Jay Winter, Nicolas Offenstadt, Laurence Van Ypersele, Carole Fink, Stefan Berger, Bruce Scates, Mark Connelly, Edward Madigan, Nico Wouters,  Piet Chielens and Dominiek Dendooven. 

The phrase 'The War That Will End War' emerged in 1914 as the title for a collection of patriotic essays by the futurist writer HG Wells to justify Britain’s participation in the Great War.

It later became an idealistic catchphrase associated with political leaders, tarnished by later conflict.

Flanders was again occupied in 1940. This picture shows a German bunker at Ostend Harbour, part of the coastal defences known as the Atlantic Wall (Photo: Centenary News)

As the introduction to this centenary conference notes: "The Paris peace conference in 1919 and a series of subsequent treaties modelled a new world order that offered hardly any solutions. Geopolitically speaking it sometimes seems as if the consequences of the First World War are not yet fully over."

'To End All Wars? - Geopolitical Aftermath and Commemorative Legacies of the First World War' will be held at the Cultuurcentrum, Ieper (Ypres) from 22-25 August 2018. For full programme details and registration, visit the TEAW conference website. 

Source: In Flanders Fields Museum/CEGESOMA

Images courtesy of In Flanders Fields Museum (Cloth Hall); Centenary News (bunker)

Posted by: CN Editorial Team