A Minor Apocalypse: Warsaw During the First World War (Cornell University Press), by Robert Blobaum
The story of Poland’s rebirth as an independent nation gets a close examination in A Minor Apocalypse. Reading Warsaw newspapers and the diaries of residents, Robert Blobaum finds that Polish patriots fighting for an independent homeland were hard to find as World War I began. The capital’s citizens displayed great enthusiasm for their Russian overlords, even enlisting in their army in numbers. When the fortunes of war turned, they cooperated with the Germans. Polish combat deaths during the war were mostly incurred in the armies of their occupying countries, Russia, Germany and Austria-Hungary. A Minor Apocalypse includes many fascinating chapters on the rapid rise of women in Polish society during the war along with cultural movements such as the spread of satirical cabaret and young people protesting social-economic conditions by going barefoot.