Episode 110: The Legacy of WWI in the Balkans and Middle East

Host: Christopher Rose, Department of History
Guests: Mary Neuburger, Departments of History & Slavic Studies; Yoav Di-Capua, Department of History

On October 30, 1918, the Ottoman Empire signed a treaty of capitulation to the Allied Powers aboard the HMS Agamemnon, a British battleship docked in Mudros harbor on the Aegean island of Lemnos. Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire were the first of the Central Powers to formally end their participation in World War I. Five days later, the Austro-Hungarian Empire followed suit, and finally the guns fell silent with the capitulation of Germany on November 11. World War I dramatically changed the face of Europe and the Middle East. The war had caused millions of deaths and millions more were displaced. Two great multinational empires–the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Ottoman Empire–were dissolved into new nation states, while Russia descended into a chaotic revolution.

In this first of two roundtables on the legacy of World War I, I am joined by Mary Neuburger, Professor of History and Director of the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, and Yoav Di-Capua, Professor of Modern Arab History, to discuss the war’s impact on Southeastern Europe and the Middle East.

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Episode 95: The Impossible Presidency

Host: Christopher Rose, Department of History
Guest: Jeremi Suri, Mack Brown Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs, LBJ School of Public Affairs and Professor, Department of History, University of Texas at Austin

Over the past two and a half centuries, the expectations placed upon the office of the President have changed and evolved with each individual charged with holding the position. From George Washington to Barack Obama, each occupant has left his mark on the office. However, since WWII, the occupant of America’s highest office has aspired to do more and more, but seems to have accomplished less and less. Have the expectations placed upon the office actually made the position less effective?

In his new book The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America’s Highest Office, returning guest Jeremi Suri (UT-Austin) takes a long historical look at what has made presidents successful in the role of chief executive, and asks whether the office has evolved to take on too much responsibility to govern effectively.

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