All for you, Franz? From the Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand to Total War”

Nathaniel Wood, Associate Professor of History

Thursday, April 3, 2014, 7:00 pm, Spencer Museum of Art Auditorium

Lecture followed by reception and viewing of graphic art made during the First World War


On June 28, 1914 the heir to the Habsburg throne, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, and his wife Sophie were murdered in Sarajevo by a Serbian nationalist. However gruesome this event may have been, it was not unique. The king and queen of Serbia and the king of Italy had been murdered about a decade before, and the prime ministers of Bulgaria and Russia had been assassinated even more recently. Why, then, did this assassination trigger war, and how did this war come to merit a new concept, that of “total war”? Drawing upon historical research, newspaper reports and images, and artwork from the Spencer Museum of Art, this lecture will grapple with these difficult questions.


Sponsors: European Studies, Spencer Museum of Art, Departments of History and Germanic Languages & Literatures, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, University Honors Program, Hall Center for the Humanities, Peace & Conflict Studies in the Humanities & Western Civilization Program.

The University of Kansas Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies (CREES) has been a national leader for the study of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe since 1959. The center is an active member of the KU WWI Centennial Commemoration coordinated by the European Studies Program.