Professor Reynolds in a BBC programme publicity photo

“Remember, but understand as well” - call by Professor David Reynolds in CWGC/LSE Lecture

Posted on on 01 November 2014
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Professor David Reynolds has called for more historical understanding of the First World War - arguing that we should:  "Remember, but understand as well”. 

He made the call while delivering the 2014 Commonwealth War Graves Commission and London School of Economics Remembrance Lecture.

The lecture event was held at the LSE in London on Wednesday 29th October 2014.

David Reynolds is Professor of International History and Fellow of Christ’s College, Cambridge – and author of ‘The Long Shadow: The Great War and the Twentieth Century’.

His lecture addressed the legacy of the First World War, in particular the effect of mass bereavement and commemoration.

He discussed the changing names and terms for the war during the last 100 years, how the conflict became “refracted’ through the experience of the Second World War, and “the cult of war poetry” that took root in the 60s.

But he ended his lecture with a call for understanding as well as remembrance – listing the areas which, in his view, should have more emphasis.

He said we need to “get out of the trenches; and move away from Poets Corner” – and look as well at the Home Front, particularly the experience of women and children; ‘Other Fronts’, such as the Middle East, India, China, Japan and Africa; and ‘Other Nations’, taking a more transnational view of the conflict.

For lecture details, see the LSE site and the CWGC site

For more information on David Reynolds, read here

The image is a BBC publicity photo promoting David Reynold's BBC2 series The Long Shadow, broadcast in October 2014.

Posted by: Nigel Dacre, CN Editor

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