Origins of the First World War summarizes the policies, issues and crises that brought Europe to war in 1914. Examining the strategic and political problems that confronted each of the great powers and the way in which social and economic factors influenced the decision-making process... , Martel discusses the position of each power and their place in the system of alliances which dominated international politics. The fourth edition has been revised and updated throughout to incorporate the body of new scholarship that has appeared since the hundredth anniversary of the outbreak of war. In a clear and accessible manner, it explains:how and why the alliance system was createdhow alliances led to a network of complicated strategic commitmentshow an escalating series of international crises from the turn of the century fuelled preparations for warwhy the peculiarities of the Balkan situation are essential in understanding the outbreak of war in 1914.This book also includes an updated Guide to Further Reading, Who's Who of important figures and Glossary of key terms, and the selection of documents has been expanded to include the key treaties as well as evidence of popular militarism and nationalism. Concise, accessible and analytical, it is essential introductory reading for all students interested in the origins of the First World War.