David Reynolds examines the intriguing paradox of the
Great War - that it was not caused by profound political
or ideological divisions but did create them in its
wake. He looks at how the conflict made politics red
hot, giving birth to an age of turbulent mass democracy.
Democracy, Reynolds argues, hit postwar Europe like a
big bang. He traces how, in the immediate aftermath of
war, monarchies toppled, the people rose up and three
iconic leaders - Vladimir Lenin, Woodrow Wilson and
Benito Mussolini - emerged with competing visions of
people power that polarised much of continental Europe
between right and left in the 1920s and 1930s.