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Elise M. Boulding Prize in Peace History

The Peace History Society awards the Elise M. Boulding Prize biannually for an outstanding English-language nonfiction book by a single author that has a substantial bearing on the field of peace history. First books and dissertations are not eligible.

The winner for 2017-18 is Michael Kazin, War Against War: The American Fight for Peace, 1914-1918 (Simon & Schuster, 2017).

In his book, War Against War: The American Fight for Peace, 1914-1918, Michael Kazin provides an excellent synthesis of the American peace movement during World War I. The book is especially strong in combining the voices of citizen antiwar activists, with those of elected government officials trying to keep the United States out of the global conflict. Focusing on Morris Hillquit, Robert La Follette, Claude Kitchin, and Crystal Eastman, along with a fascinating cast of other rebels against war, he sketches a vivid account of the broad antiwar coalition. Kazin’s work demonstrates that radicals, progressives, internationalists, as well as some conservatives believed war was barbaric, uncivilized, economically unsound, and just plain wrong for America. As Kazin points out, few Americans understand the impact of “The Great War” on the subsequent history of the United States. With a strong narrative, sparkling prose, and mature judgments, War Against War raises the profile of peace history by appealing to a broad popular audience, as well as to scholars.

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