16 September: Vertigo – The World Before 1914 – Lecture

Historians consider the trenches of World War One as the birthplace of the modern era. Philipp Blom argues that it was the years before 1914 which saw the emergence of a new European world — one dominated by changes in technology, by globalisation and immigration, consumerism, the collapse of moral values, and the rivalry of the superpowers.

A period dominated by speed, social change, exploding cities, feminism, psychoanalysis and mass culture.

In this lecture Philipp Blom will analyze the main currents of the early twentieth century. He will outline the velocity, fear and exhilaration of life around 1910, a time in which our own world first took shape. Blom will look at it from the perspective of an age that did not yet know that it would be remembered as the time before a war that would change the face of civilization.

About The Vertigo Years:

Blom … brings an appealing energy and curiosity, and occasional humor, to his subject. … He has been remarkably successful at synthesizing a wide range of material, creating a panorama of the whole of European culture during this frantic time — and not just high culture, but the transformation of everyday life by revolutions in sex, shopping, science, and sociology.

An ambitious book – a one-volume assessment of the gravity-eroding, giddying sweep of European cultural, social, political and spiritual change that permeated the first 15 years of the 20th century. But Philipp Blom has pulled it off triumphantly… a work of narrative history at its best.

Philipp Blom

Philipp Blom was born in 1970 in Hamburg and grew up in Detmold, in Germany. After university studies in Vienna and Oxford, he obtained a D.Phil in Modern History. He started writing at Oxford and published a novel as well as occasional journalism. After university, he worked in London as an editor, translator, writer and freelance journalist, contributing to newspapers, magazines and radio programmes in Great Britain, the US, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, and France.

In 2001, Philipp Blom moved to Paris to concentrate on his books. In 2007 he settled in Vienna, where he continues to write historical nonfiction as well as fiction, and journalism. He presents a cultural discussion programme on Austrian national radio and has lectured on philosophy and cultural history in Europe, the US, and South America.

Philipp’s current project is “At Breaking Point” – a historical overview of culture and life during the inter-War period in Europe and the United States.

The Vertigo Years – Prize Winner, NDR Nonfiction Prize 2009, Germany
The Vertigo Years – Prize Winner, De Groene Waterman Prijs 2010, Belgium
The Wicked Company – Prize Winner, Gleim Prize 2011, Germany
The Wicked Company – Historical book of the year 2011, Damals Magazin

Practical information

Monday 16 September, 20h00 – 22h00 • Aula Minderbroedersberg 4-6 • Free entrance

Picture © Peter-Andreas Hassiepen

Source: Studium Generale

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