The Age of Total War, 1860-1945

The Age of Total War, 1860-1945

by Jeremy Black
     
 

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What is total war? Definitions abound, but one thing is certain—the concept of total war has come to be seen as a defining concept of the modern age. In The Age of Total War, celebrated historian Jeremy Black explores the rise and demise of an era of total war, which he defines in terms of the intensity of the struggle, the range (geographical and/or

Overview

What is total war? Definitions abound, but one thing is certain—the concept of total war has come to be seen as a defining concept of the modern age. In The Age of Total War, celebrated historian Jeremy Black explores the rise and demise of an era of total war, which he defines in terms of the intensity of the struggle, the range (geographical and/or chronological) of conflict, the nature of the goals, and the extent to which civil society was involved. He contends that this era (roughly 1860–1945) was markedly different from the warfare that characterized earlier periods, and that it is very different from the situation that has evolved since, with its emphasis on asymmetrical conflict and limited warfare.
Acknowledging that various definitions are problematic and often contradictory, Black argues that 1860 to 1945 was an era in which the prospect of war and the consequences of it were crucially important for human history. He focuses primarily on conflict between Western powers, including Japanese participation in the Russo-Japanese War. Trends and developments subsequent to 1945 have combined, Black asserts, to make a return to total war unlikely.

Editorial Reviews

The Journal Of Military History
In The Age of Total War, Black builds on his impressive record of scholarship and provides an effective and useful study of the course and conduct of war during the second half of the nineteenth and first half of the twentieth centuries that offers insightful consideration of total war as a central theme in the military history of the period. . . . Black's effective synthesis of scholarship and thought-provoking analysis make this a work of much value to students of this period in world military history. . . . [I]t will work well for instructors seeking to stimulate thought and discussion in graduate-level courses and a supplemental text for undergraduate courses.
Air and Space Power Journal
[Black's] discussions of World War I and II positively shine.
The Journal of Military History
In The Age of Total War, Black builds on his impressive record of scholarship and provides an effective and useful study of the course and conduct of war during the second half of the nineteenth and first half of the twentieth centuries that offers insightful consideration of total war as a central theme in the military history of the period. . . . Black's effective synthesis of scholarship and thought-provoking analysis make this a work of much value to students of this period in world military history. . . . [I]t will work well for instructors seeking to stimulate thought and discussion in graduate-level courses and a supplemental text for undergraduate courses.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781461644095
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
09/16/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
215
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

Jeremy Black, author of more than forty books on military history and international affairs, is professor of history at Exeter University in the United Kingdom.

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