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The March of Folly: From Troy to Vietnam

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  • Posted December 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Ms. Tuchman Nails the Problems with our History

    I recently read this book, & the parallels that she draws with respect to the gaffes & outright stupid mistakes that all governments seem to make is amazingly on point. Her analysis of the "folly" of Viet Nam is dead on,& after reading it, anyone should be able to see what drove our involvement in that area; whatever side they they were/are on,this book explains it in the easiest,clearest manner possible. I highly recommend it.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2008

    Thought-provoking in Tuchmann's unique style

    This is one of my favorite books of all time. It shows what factors contributed to the government blindness 'or plain stupidity' that lead to those moments in history where we now think that almost any other choice would've been better than the one chosen. Worth the read.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2005

    Why it happened

    Barbara Tuchman takes 3 important historical events and one legend (Troy) and explains why these events happened. She defines folly as the pursuit of policy contrary to self interest. For folly to occur one or all of three things are always present: obliviousness to the disaffection of constituents, primacy of self-aggrandizement, and illusions of invulnerable status. She takes these themes and analysis events in unusual detail, explaining how political institutions do self-destructive things. And she explains why these things happened, something we do not always get when reading history. I thought her book to be extremely interesting for anyone interested in political history. It is well written and her writing is logical in describing the seqauence of events, the people in power, their values, and why they acted in such a self destructive manner. I think this is an important book because it shows that folly can occur when men in power feel the most invulnerable.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 2, 2012

    If you read history this is a must read.

    Part of the genius of Barbara Tuchman is that her writings offer new insights to every serious reader. She is a valuable resource for scholars and novices. And in her “March of Folly, From Troy To Vietnam” we find conclusive proof that humanity will probably never “learn”. It appears that we are pitiful creatures, driven endlessly by our desires. Thus we seek power and all that may flow from it, until we are toppled by orerreach or death. So it was from “... Troy to Vietnam ...” and to … Iraq.

    “ ... As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, …”

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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