Dr Rodney Atwood, ‘The British Army’s Victory in Afghanistan, 1880’, 17th March 2014

rodneyatwoodIn this post, one of our first-year History undergraduates, Ben Stagg, writes about the recent talk by Dr Rodney Atwood at the Gloucestershire branch of the Historical Association.

On the evening of Monday 17th March 2014 (St. Patrick’s Day, no less), an intrepid group of students and staff from the University of Gloucestershire’s History department attended a lecture of the local Historical Association at Up Hatherley library, given by Dr Rodney Atwood, on the subject of the Second Anglo-Afghan War. Particular focus was given to the role of then-Lieutenant General Sir Frederick Roberts, who went on to become a Field Marshal and one of the greatest heroes of the late-Victorian army.

The presentation was in equal parts educational and entertaining, and provided an interesting comparison with contemporary military activities in Afghanistan, with the general feeling from the audience that perhaps President Obama and our own government could learn a thing or two from the success of General Roberts! As most of us had not had the opportunity to learn about the period before, it was a highly stimulating experience, with a fair number of amusing anecdotes thrown into the mix! As an added bonus, some lucky few of us acquired signed copies of Dr Atwood’s book, The March to Kandahar: Roberts in Afghanistan.

It was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended, and we hope to attend many more interesting and entertaining talks with the Historical Association. I would heartily recommend the experience!

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