American Experience: The Great War


The Great War tells the rich and complex story of World War I through the voices of nurses, journalists, aviators, and the American troops who came to be known as “doughboys.” The series explores the experiences of African-American and Latino soldiers, suffragists, Native American “code talkers,” and others whose participation in the war to “make the world safe for democracy” has been largely forgotten. The Great War explores how a brilliant PR man bolstered support for the war; how President Woodrow Wilson steered the nation through years of neutrality, only to reluctantly lead America into the bloodiest conflict the world had ever seen, transforming the United States into a dominant player on the international stage; and how the ardent patriotism and determination to support America’s crusade for liberty abroad led to one of the most oppressive crackdowns on civil liberties at home in U.S. history. It is a story of heroism and sacrifice that would ultimately claim 15 million lives and profoundly change the world forever.
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Apr 12, 2017

Season 1
Episode 3

Chart the ways in which the bloodiest battle in American history, and the ensuing peace, forever changed a president and a nation. In the fall of 1918, the deadly flu swept through cities at home and at the front. When the tide of war turned, the Germans wanted a cease-fire on Wilson’s terms. On November 11, 1918, the war was over, but for Wilson, the last fight remained. He negotiated the terms of the peace treaty and won the world over to his League of Nations, but felled by a stroke, he failed to convince the Senate to ratify the Treaty of Versailles, with tragic consequences. While Wilson had heralded the triumph of American values abroad, many were worried about democracy at home; with citizens persecuted, “aliens” interned, and cities torn apart by race riots. The Great War changed the country forever. African Americans who had fought in the war found ways to continue to push for change. Women’s suffrage gained converts, including Wilson. And America stepped onto the world stage.
Apr 9, 2017
Apr 10, 2017
Apr 12, 2017
14 total

Additional Information

Audio language
English [Stereo, 5.1]
English [CC]
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