UCL European Institute


'An Avalanche of Terror'. Bombing Imagined and Real, 1919-1945

19 June 2014, 12:00 am

Event Information

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19 June 2014
A public lecture by Professor Richard Overy (University of Exeter), as part of the Violence of War conference.


19 June 2014


UCL Darwin Lecture Theatre, Room B40
Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT

During the inter-war years the prospect of a future war conjured up lurid visions for the public of a terrible apocalypse of bombs, gas and germs descending on helpless cities. The experience of bombing did not produce the kind of catastrophic breakdown of urban society that had been predicted. Richard Overy explores the reasons for the earlier bombing panic and examines how urban societies in World War II explained the gap between pre-war expectation and the wartime reality of survival under the bombs.

Richard Overy (b. 1947) was educated at Caius College, Cambridge. He taught at Cambridge from 1972 to 1979 at Queens' College and from 1976-79 as a University Assistant Lecturer. From 1980 to 2004 he taught at King's College, London where he was made professor of Modern History in 1994. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (1977), Fellow of the British Academy (2000) and Fellow of King's College (2003). In 2001 he was awarded the Samuel Elliot Morison Prize of the Society for Military History for his contribution to the history of warfare. In September 2004 he took up appointment as Professor of History at the University of Exeter.

This public lecture forms part of UCL's conference Violence of War: Experiences and Images of Conflict (19-20 June), supported by the AHRC.