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Winner of the Duff Cooper Prize 1993
One of the world' s foremost military historians offers a sweeping view of the place of warfare in civilization. Probing the meanings, motivations, and methods underlying war throughout history, John Keegan suggests why, in 2,000 years, humanity has not advanced far beyond the acceptance of violence on honorable terms. Keegan argues that while all civilizations owe their origins to war-making, their survival ultimately depends on taming man s enormous and enduring capacity for violence.
Keegan offers a sweeping view of the place of warfare in human culture and a brilliant exposition of the human impulse toward violence. Beginning with the premise that all civilizations owe their origins to warmaking, Keegan probes the meanings, motivations, and methods underlying war in different societies over the course of more than two thousand years, demonstrating how particular cultures give rise to their own styles of warmaking. A History of Warfare also examines the great changes in military technology from the discoveries of bronze and iron to the 20th century mobilization of science and industry culminating in the development of the atomic bomb.