Nationalism And Overconfidence In WWI Essay

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Nationalism and Overconfidence in WWI The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28, 1914 marked the beginning of a turbulent four years of global-scale warfare (Dutton 698). However, the assassination was not the sole motive for the beginning of World War I and there were, in fact, a myriad of underlying issues that exacerbated the situation. Alliances made between countries served to complicate things and made many countries feel obligated to participate. Imperialism and an arms race between major powers paved the way for the attitudes of the early 1900’s, and nationalism, combined with a glaring overconfidence from participants of the war that they would win, and win quickly, helped to charge these attitudes. For Imperial Germany and the other countries, ultimately, it was a quest for dominance and a desire to prove their worth. When Austria targeted Serbia in retaliation for the Archduke’s assassination, Serbia called upon its ally, Russia, for support. This began a long chain of calls for allied nations to step in and participate. Germany, allied with Austria, was next to eagerly join in and declare war on Russia, to be then closely followed by Britain and France. Many of the written treaties and alliances did not actually require allies to submit and agree to wage outright …show more content…

The assertion that one’s own country, and especially that one’s own race, was superior to all others was a concept boasted by all major nations. The war’s impact was great and, with nationalist propaganda spread in attempts to trigger commitment to the cause, people felt positively obliged to contribute to their nation’s success. Once the war was underway, the main reason for continuing seemed to become simply to win and to prove their nationalist egotism was

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