An intimate narrative history of World War I told through the stories of twenty men and women from around the globe--a powerful, illuminating, heart-rending picture of what the war was really like. In this masterful book, rewned historian Peter Englund describes this epoch-defining event by weaving together accounts of the average man or woman who experienced it. Drawing on the diaries, journals, and letters of twenty individuals from Belgium, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, Venezuela, and the United States, Englund s collection of these varied perspectives describes t a course of events but a world of feeling. Composed in short chapters that move between the home front and the front lines, The Beauty and Sorrow brings to life these twenty particular people and lets them speak for all who were shaped in some way by the War, but whose voices have remained unheard.
Peter Englund received a Ph.D. in history at the University of Uppsala in Sweden. He has been given a number of literary prizes in his home country, including the most famous one, the August. In 2002, he was elected to the Swedish Academy (who awards the Nobel Prize in Literature), and in 2008 was appointed its new Permanent Secretary. He has also worked as a war correspondent, in the Balkans, Afghanistan and Iraq.