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May 18, 2018 

Program - 
Dr. Jonathan Marvil, University of Michigan Department of History
The American Memory of World War I

Jonathan Marwil was born, raised, and schooled in Detroit. He is a graduate of Brandeis University, served in the army for two years, and received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, where he currently teaches courses in European and American History.

He has written several books, among them a study of Sir Francis Bacon and a biography of Frederic Manning, whose novel about World War I (The Middle Parts of Fortune) Hemingway declared "the finest and noblest book of men in war."

More recently he published Visiting Modern War in Risorgimento Italy, a study of the journalists, artists, photographers, etc. who came to Italy in 1859 to view/record what Italians refer to as The Second War of Italian Independence. He is currently working on a book about two brothers and the books they wrote about their experiences in World War II.


For some time now Americans have had little sense and even less curiosity about World War I. It is another of America's forgotten wars, and, one might argue, for obvious reasons. Our role in the war was limited, and our casualties insignificant by comparison with the other major combatants. More importantly, perhaps, by 1930 the war was coming to be seen in America as a wasted effort in which the US should never have become involved.

Dr. Marwil will examine how and why we came to dismiss the war from our concerns, and then from our memory.

May 25, 2018 - No Meeting

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