Ten years have now passed since the conclusion of the Second World War, and it is perhaps opportune to consider how far its ‘origins’ have become a proper subject for historical research. It will, of course, at once be realised that it is at present impossible, and will be for a long time to come very difficult, to reach any definite overall assessment of pre-war diplomacy during the years between 1919 and 1939. This is not because no, or only a small amount of, material is available, or because historians have shirked treatment of the problems involved. On the contrary, a considerable amount of archival material has already been published in book form, or is at the disposal of research students relying on microfilm. In addition, a number of historians have written on various aspects of interwar diplomacy, some would say too many of them have been writing on the subject. The question arises, however, if their labours have achieved as much as they or their admirers claim, namely if the origins of the war can now be said to have been put in adequate perspective.
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- The Historiography of World War II
T. Desmond Williams
- Macmillan Education UK
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