The Road Past Monchy
Fighting the First World War at Arras, 1914–1918
Published by: Indiana University Press
416 Pages, 50 b&w illus.
This book can be purchased from this website 120 days before the publish date
- Published: March 2024
The Road Past Monchy offers a unique look at the land and air operations around the strategic village of Monchy-le-Preux at the center of the western front during World War I. The story of the Great War is usually one of condemnation or rehabilitation of strategists and consecration of the common soldier, while the story of those who planned, directed, and led operations on the ground has generally been overlooked.
The Road Past Monchy uses experiences of junior leaders fighting around the key terrain of Monchy-le-Preux to challenge the currently accepted views and reveal that the Great War, despite subsequent impression, was a surprisingly dynamic effort conducted in an arena of constantly evolving practices, techniques, and technology. Less well known than its contemporary campaigns at the Somme, Verdun, or Passchendaele, Monchy also carries less preconceived baggage and thus offers a prime opportunity to reevaluate the accepted wisdom of the events, personalities, and understandings of the Great War.
The Road Past Monchy offers readers a unique chance to uncover the "lost" perspective of junior war leaders in a theater of war that saw almost continuous operations from 1914 through to 1918.
Act I: Maneuver
1. Demolish All Creation, 1914
2. Handfuls of Straw, 1915
Act II: Wearing-Out Battle
3. The Amateurs, January-July 1916
4. Recalibration, November-December: 1916
5. The Right Way, January-February 1917
6. Preparing the Men, March, 1917
7. Preparing the Field, 1-7 April 1917
8. Easter, 1917
9. Damned Hard Luck, 10-11 April 1917
10. A Strange and Tragic Drama, 11-12 April 1917
11. Topsail, 13-14 April 1917
12. Worse Exists, 16 April-31 December 1917
Act III: Climax
13. Grognards, 21 March-18 Jul 1918
14. War Become Eternal, 21-25 August 1918
15. Something Great and Terrible, 26 August 1918
16. What Can Be Accomplished, 27-28 August 1918
Appendix: Military Structures