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Antony James Beevor (born 14 December 1946) is a Britishmarker historian, educated at Winchester Collegemarker and Sandhurstmarker. He studied under the famous historian of World War II, John Keegan. Beevor is a former officer with the 11th Hussars who served in England and Germany for 5 years before resigning his commission. He has published several popular histories on the Second World War and 20th century in general.

Overview

He is a visiting professor at the School of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck, University of Londonmarker. He is descended from a long line of women writers, being a son of "Kinta" Beevor (born Carinthia Jane Waterfield, 22 December 191129 August 1995), herself the daughter of Lina Waterfield, and a descendant of Lucie Duff-Gordon (author of a travelogue on Egyptmarker). Kinta Beevor wrote A Tuscan Childhood. Antony Beevor is married to Hon. Artemis Cooper, daughter of Duff Cooper, granddaughter of Lady Diana Cooper.

Between leaving the Army and commencing writing, he was an Account Executive at Masius Wynne Williams, working on Rank Hovis McDougall products.

His best known works, the best-selling Stalingrad and Berlin - The Downfall 1945 recount the World War II battles between the Soviet Unionmarker and Germanymarker. They have been praised for their vivid, compelling style, their treatment of the ordinary lives of combatants and civilians and the use of newly disclosed documents from Soviet archives. Beevor's works have been used as sources and credited as such in many recent documentary films about World War II. Another one of his best known works is Crete: The Battle and the Resistance for which he won the Runciman Prize, administered by the Anglo-Hellenic League for stimulating interest in Greek history and culture.

Criticism

Berlin: The Downfall 1945 has encountered criticism in Russia. The Russian ambassador to the UK denounced the book as "lies" and "slander against the people who saved the world from Nazism". O.A. Rzheshevsky, a professor and President of the Russian Association of World War II Historians, has charged that Beevor is merely resurrecting the discredited and racist views of Neo-Nazi historians, who depicted Soviet troops as subhuman "Asiatic hordes". Other western historians such as Richard Overy have criticised Russian "outrage" at the book and defended Beevor. Overy accused the Russians of refusing to acknowledge Soviet war crimes, "Partly this is because they felt that much of it was justified vengeance against an enemy who committed much worse, and partly it was because they were writing the victors' history."

This criticism centres on the book's discussion of atrocities committed by the Red Army against German civilians – in particular, the extremely widespread rape of German women and female Russian forced labourers, both before and after the end of the war. Beevor himself stated that he is critical of portraying Germans as victims. In an interview with the major Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza, he stated that the entry of the Red Army was the result of a German-intiated war, as well as the fact that German society overwhelmingly supported Hitler and in fact wanted the war, pointing out that the women were also part of that society. Additionally he refuses to see Germans as victims, unlike Jews, Poles or Russians.

Published works

He has written thirteen books, novels and non-fiction.

Book Year Type Published Other
Violent Brink 1975 Novel First published by John Murray, London
The Faustian Pact 1983 Novel Jonathan Cape, London
For Reasons of State 1980 Novel Jonathan Cape, London
The Spanish Civil War 1982 Non-Fiction first published Orbis, London
The enchantment of Christina von Retzen 1989 Novel Weidenfeld and Nicolson, London
Inside the British Army 1990 Non-Fiction Chatto Windus, London
Crete: The Battle and the Resistance 1991 Non-Fiction John Murray, London
Paris After the Liberation, 1944–1949 1994 Non-Fiction co-authored with his wife, Artemis Cooper. Revised edition 2004
Stalingrad 1998 Non-Fiction Viking, London, later by Penguin, London Translated into 26 other languages.
Berlin: The Downfall 1945 2002 Non-Fiction Penguin, London Published as The Fall of Berlin 1945 in the U.S.
The Mystery of Olga Chekhova 2004 Non-Fiction (See Olga Chekhova)
The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936–39 2006 Non-Fiction Spanish edition published in 2005.
D-Day: The Battle for Normandy 2009 Non-Fiction


Antony Beevor has edited books, including:
  • A Writer at War: Vasily Grossman with the Red Army 1941–1945 by Vasily Grossman.


He has also contributed to several other books, including:
  • The British Army, Manpower and Society into the Twenty-First Century, ed by Hew Strachan
  • What Ifs? of American History: Eminent Historians Imagine What Might Have Been, by Robert Cowley (Editor), Antony Beevor and Caleb Carr. (2003)


Awards







  • The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-39 (Spanish Edition)


References

External links




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