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    For my NEA I am using Fritz Fischer and James Joll as my two main historians. Fischer argues that Germany was responsible for the outbreak of WWI, but I'm not sure what Joll argues. He seems to place importance on several causes (nationalism in european empires, Russian and Austrian ambitions in the Balkans, the long term effects of German unification), but I'm not sure how I present his argument to counter that of Fritz Fischer. With other historians, I could say "Fischer blames Germany and Jim blames Russia, we can see that this piece of evidence proves that Jim's argument is more convincing", but because Joll doesn't assign the outbreak of WWI to a single cause, how do I argue against Fischer's point?
    Thanks to anyone who may be able to help me
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    (Original post by AxSirlotl)
    For my NEA I am using Fritz Fischer and James Joll as my two main historians. Fischer argues that Germany was responsible for the outbreak of WWI, but I'm not sure what Joll argues. He seems to place importance on several causes (nationalism in european empires, Russian and Austrian ambitions in the Balkans, the long term effects of German unification), but I'm not sure how I present his argument to counter that of Fritz Fischer. With other historians, I could say "Fischer blames Germany and Jim blames Russia, we can see that this piece of evidence proves that Jim's argument is more convincing", but because Joll doesn't assign the outbreak of WWI to a single cause, how do I argue against Fischer's point?
    Thanks to anyone who may be able to help me
    That by ascribing such a complicated event (ie the outbreak of WW1) to a single main cause he is over-simplifying matters?

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    (Original post by ageshallnot)
    That by ascribing such a complicated event (ie the outbreak of WW1) to a single main cause he is over-simplifying matters?

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    No, and I actually agree with him to a certain extent, much more than I do with Fischer. My problem is that whereas Fischer argues Germany is to blame, Joll doesn't provide an answer that is as clear as Fischer's and for that reason I'm finding it hard to use his points of argument to counter those of Fischer. I'm not sure that I completely understand his conclusion and to what he attributes the cause of WWI to; the unification of Germany, nationalism in the European empires, the mood, or that those making the decisions were limited in their choice of action, or whether it's all of these combined which were necessary to produce the situation in July 1914 where war was possible.
    I'm not taking issue with Joll's work, I'm just expressing that I'm having trouble interpreting what he's putting across and arguing his points of argument.
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    (Original post by AxSirlotl)
    No, and I actually agree with him to a certain extent, much more than I do with Fischer. My problem is that whereas Fischer argues Germany is to blame, Joll doesn't provide an answer that is as clear as Fischer's and for that reason I'm finding it hard to use his points of argument to counter those of Fischer. I'm not sure that I completely understand his conclusion and to what he attributes the cause of WWI to; the unification of Germany, nationalism in the European empires, the mood, or that those making the decisions were limited in their choice of action, or whether it's all of these combined which were necessary to produce the situation in July 1914 where war was possible.
    I'm not taking issue with Joll's work, I'm just expressing that I'm having trouble interpreting what he's putting across and arguing his points of argument.
    Does this help:

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/p...l-1414619.html

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    (Original post by AxSirlotl)
    No, and I actually agree with him to a certain extent, much more than I do with Fischer. My problem is that whereas Fischer argues Germany is to blame, Joll doesn't provide an answer that is as clear as Fischer's and for that reason I'm finding it hard to use his points of argument to counter those of Fischer. I'm not sure that I completely understand his conclusion and to what he attributes the cause of WWI to; the unification of Germany, nationalism in the European empires, the mood, or that those making the decisions were limited in their choice of action, or whether it's all of these combined which were necessary to produce the situation in July 1914 where war was possible.
    I'm not taking issue with Joll's work, I'm just expressing that I'm having trouble interpreting what he's putting across and arguing his points of argument.
    I've just had a flick through the conclusion of Joll's The First World War for the first time in many years. It seems clear that he has a more complex, layered view of the causes.

    Note that Joll did take a lot of Fischer on board. He was after all the translator of Griff nach der Weltmacht. In 1966 he wrote an article essentially defending Fischer - it's in HW Koch's The Origins of the First World War. Koch describes Joll as sharing Fischer's viewpoint. Yet when Joll wrote his own book on the subject in 1984, his view was - as we agree - more complex.

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