Parts, chapters, sections

The Next War in the Air: Civilian Fears of Strategic Bombardment in Britain, 1908-1941

The knock-out blow; Imagining the next war in the air; Historiography of the knock-out blow; The structure of this thesis

I. Threats

1. Origins of the knock-out blow theory, 1893-1931
The doom of the great city, 1893-1916; Will civilisation crash? 1916-1931; Conclusion

2. Evolution of the knock-out blow theory, 1932-1941
Menace, 1932-1935; Towards Armageddon, 1935-1937; The air defence of Britain, 1937-1939; Victory in the air, 1939-1941; Conclusion

II. Responses

3. Adaptation
Psychology; Politics; Dispersal and evacuation; Protection; Conclusion

4. Resistance
Air defence; Anti-aircraft weapons; The counter-offensive; Conclusion

5. Internationalism
Limitation; Disarmament; Collective security; Internationalisation; Conclusion

III. Crises

6. Defence panics
The problem of public opinion; The press in early twentieth century Britain; Moral panics and defence panics; Defence panics, 1847-1914; Air panics, 1908-1941; Conclusion

7. The German air menace, 1913, 1922 and 1935
Emergence; Reactions; Resolution; Conclusion

8. Barcelona, Canton and London, 1938
Emergence; Reactions; Resolution; Conclusion

9. The battles of London, 1917 and 1940
Emergence; Reactions; Resolution; Conclusion


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8 thoughts on “Parts, chapters, sections

  1. That look like an effective structure. Sounds like a good read too. My only suggestions, and something suggested to me by my supervisor, is to include in your introduction defintion of the key areas that you are discussing. In my case it was Combined Operations, Doctrine, Military Effectiveness. It may well form part of Historiography section but it will be worht adding in I think.

  2. michael marshall

    I have only seen a few reference to radiation ray weapons and a few references to atomic explosive bombs in the period 1900- 1940 - have you found many references to a radioactive particles bomb ?

    Ie bombers dispersing radioactivity material, in a similar manner to the dispersing of germs and poison gas, over large cities.

  3. JDK

    I still think it'll do well as a T shirt.

    Parts on the front, chapters & sections on the back.

    Should be a great icebreaker at parties.

  4. Post author


    Thanks -- it's a good idea but I'm right up against my word limit! I'm actually trying to cut things rather than add them :) But I do start out with a discussion of the knock-out blow itself.


    Me too!


    No, I haven't come across any references to dirty bombs or anything similar, and I think the reason is that awareness of fallout and the effects of radiation on humans was very limited until well after Hiroshima. In terms of the damage they do, they are really just portrayed as very big bombs, although sometimes with unusual properties (cf. H. G. Wells' The World Set Free). You might find Paul Brians' book of interest, if you haven't come across it already:


    I'm thinking wordle, actually ...

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