|← Silk Road||The Lewis and Clark Expedition →|
Thunder and twilight is a familiar sight of historic hallucination. It draws the untapped situations until now reflecting two crucial years in the life of the city of Vienna. All this happened in the life of the twentieth century. In the year 1913, a young Stalin came for a launching mission in Russian revolutionaries. This was the first time he collided with Trotsky. Also at the same place, a failed artist by the name Adolf Hitler kept on spreading watercolors at fellow drifters in a flophouse. He was a painter and at times an architect. The overall set up of the book was in a twilight mood. Morton used the late 1080s to explain his views about Europe. During that time, nationalism had spread roots throughout the places in Europe. Many people wanted to fight this force with their efforts ending fruitless. The Austro-Hungarian Empire composed of nationalists who always wanted conflicts. Various leaders fought for the unending conflicts but all in vain. The story becomes climax after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the crown prince of Austria-Hungary, in Sarajevo. Conflicts continued unending in the empire since the people of the dynasty eliminated the barricader.
Frederic Morton focused on two climatic years, 1913-1914. He recreated Vienna in its entire majesty for the last days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Looking at his first pages, he reveals the reason why he has an interest in Australian history. Other history books about Australia ever revealed the Habsburg monarchy that is unappealing to comprehend. The Austrian used the divide and conquer strategy to rule their states. The way many suffered is beyond explanation. This made Morton reflect the sympathy of the victims in this book.
Reading the book, Thunder at Twilight: Vienna 1913-14, by Frederic Morton, the reader will capture some few characters that the author uses to reflect the life while at Vienna. Morton uses Crow Prince Franz Ferdinand, a nephew to Emperor Franz Joseph, as a major character in his book. From the definition, he depicts the role of a dove, who wants to avoid conflicts among the Serbians and Russians. He ever wanted to revise the constitution of Habsburg to prevent misunderstandings among the citizens. He used the strategy of prediction of the downfall of the dynasties of both Habsburg and Romanovs, whenever the two empires wanted to start a war. His main aim was to prevent the two dynasties from fighting. These people did not care about the predictions for what they wanted is war. They later killed him to prevent all these predictions. France’s role in history was to act as a victim of an assassination that triggered the war. In his lifetime, he married a mere countess wife, who faced rejection by the court. His wife, Sophie Von Chotek, got a rejection from the court regarding their marriage. The rankle continued until the demise of France. The emperor, on the other hand, was “the weathered centerpiece of a patinaed court.” He was a crucial leader who never devolved power to constitutional forums. While in the throne, he ever solved national problems by ignoring them. He used to protect his ego at the expense of the citizens. This is a clear picture of how the emperor was a tyrant leader. Addressing issues that needed national attentions in that manner was unaccepted. The governance was a reflection of the Australian way of supremacy that ignored the voice of people.
Thunder at Twilight focuses on a town named Vienna. Vienna captures a city that attracts numerous historical figures. Many characters ever wanted to leave there, including, Adolf Hitler, Josef Broz, Uncle Joe Stalin, Leon Trotsky, and Sigmund Freud found their homes in Vienna within months. All these characters had a vision for their survival within the boundaries of each other. From the book, Morton reveals Hitler as a selfish character with devilish endeavors. Intermittently, he launches into a declamatory outburst against the Jews and foreigners. Tito, on the other hand, works at a car factory. He loves going out with women during weekends. Trotsky specializes with French literature. He takes most of his time engaging in debates at the cafes where he encountered briefly with Stalin. Stalin had come to do research before going back to Russia and Siberia. Sigmund Freud makes use of his time writing psychology papers as a strategy to fight Carl Jung intellectually. Looking at the things that all of the above characters do portrays how important Vienna was to Europe. It is wise to think how these characters with various deeds moved throughout the city at the same time as vital.
An overview of what Morton wanted is to pass through is the humanizing history. In the modern days, we see Hitler in an old newsreel footage making unnecessary noise at various rallies. While at Vienna, Hitler always dished out money to some of his people who are unable to get food or rent. Sigmund Freud, who always looked so dull during those old days in the picture, loved to look for mushrooms. He did this together with his children while he was wearing an outlandish local garb. Even the Habsburgs are decorated with a brushstroke of graciousness. When you look at Franz Ferdinand, he is used to symbolize war in the Austrian territory. This depicts him better than other historic books with his stories. Morton gives him the title of a dove bordered by hawks. This is because of his efforts of turning aside war that was to crop up especially with Serbia. The general life of the people in this territory reflected the Europe way of dictatorship. In the real life, during the 20th century, especially between 1913 and 1914, tension took control of the situation in Europe. The government was compromised sprouting fear among citizens. Those without wealth were intolerant with the bay between classes. This gulf demoted lives to poverty and servitude. Things happened with the last bit leading to the assassination of the Hapsburg heir Franz Ferdinand. This was the beginning of the First World War. As Morton was writing this book, he looked at the situations in the emperors and felt the need to remember the incidences that happened.
As the book ends, there is the dramatic countdown to war, as the archduke and his wife dies leaving behind a legacy. The description of the murder is very appealing. This assassination rivals the Kennedy killings in terms of sheer ineffectiveness and stupidity. It appears funny especially the scene where someone tosses a bomb at the archduke's motorcade. As this happens, others continue with the procession. This resulted into war. The whole mess reeks of conspiracy.
In conclusion, this book touches history with actual things. The author made use of many sources like the newspapers to communicate the real feel of the time. In using of time seasons in events happening, the author reflects the actual real times of the history thus making things look like happening in reality.