Margaret MacMillan on why there are wars
In this talk first delivered in October 2021, historian Margaret MacMillian considers historical reasons for war
The reasons for war may lie in human nature or human society or perhaps even in the availability of the means to fight. This talk looks at why groups and individuals fight and asks why war became more deadly and total in the 20th century. It will also consider war today and what the future might hold.
Margaret MacMillan (Toronto and Oxford) is professor of History at the University of Toronto and an emeritus professor of International History at Oxford University. She was Provost of Trinity College, Toronto from 2002-7 and Warden of St Antony’s College, Oxford from 2007-2017. She is currently a trustee of the Central European University and the Imperial War Museum. Her research specializes in British imperial history and the international history of the 19th and 20th centuries. Publications include Paris, 1919, Nixon and Mao and The War that Ended Peace. She gave the CBC’s Massey lectures in 2015 and the BBC’s Reith Lectures in 2018. Awards include the Samuel Johnson prize for non-fiction and the Governor-General’s literary award. She has honorary degrees from several universities and is an honorary Fellow of the British Academy. She is also a Companion of the Order of Canada and a Companion of Honour (UK)