The Guns of August/The Proud Tower

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Overview

Writing with a clarity, grace, and novelistic sweep rare among historians, Barbara W. Tuchman (1912-1989) distilled the complex interplay of personalities and events into gripping narratives that fuse rigorous scholarship with elegant literary art. An astute portraitist, she brilliantly laid bare the all-too-human failures of leaders subject to the pull of historical currents and prone, often tragically, to the ingrained biases of culture and temperament. Her Pulitzer Prize-winning best seller The Guns of August ...

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Overview

Writing with a clarity, grace, and novelistic sweep rare among historians, Barbara W. Tuchman (1912-1989) distilled the complex interplay of personalities and events into gripping narratives that fuse rigorous scholarship with elegant literary art. An astute portraitist, she brilliantly laid bare the all-too-human failures of leaders subject to the pull of historical currents and prone, often tragically, to the ingrained biases of culture and temperament. Her Pulitzer Prize-winning best seller The Guns of August (1962) offers a majestic orchestration of the diplomatic and military history of the crucial first weeks of World War I. Tuchman's observations about the irrational escalation of conflict made a deep impression on President John F. Kennedy and influenced his actions during the Cuban Missile Crisis; fifty years later, The Guns of August remains an exemplary study of events propelled headlong by their own internal logic and momentum. Some of Tuchman's finest writing is contained in her following book, The Proud Tower: A Portrait of the World before the War, 1890-1914 (1966), a fascinating kaleidoscope of eight precisely drawn essays on subjects ranging from international socialism and anarchism to the Dreyfus Affair in France and the birth of American imperialism that collectively set the stage for the cataclysm of 1914. Presented in one volume for the first time and released to mark Tuchman's centennial year and the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of The Guns of August, here is a vivid, indelible panorama of an epoch in transition.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
11/01/2013
This best-selling 1963 Pulitzer Prize winner is still considered a standard by many teachers and praised for its narrative drive, although there's scant attention to the eastern front and Balkans. With an introduction by Margaret MacMillan for the Library of America, it still belongs on shelves.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781598531459
  • Publisher: Library of America
  • Publication date: 3/1/2012
  • Pages: 1264
  • Sales rank: 131,023
  • Product dimensions: 5.07 (w) x 8.14 (h) x 1.59 (d)

Meet the Author

MARGARET MacMILLAN, editor, is the author of Paris 1919 (winner of the Duff Cooper Prize, the Samuel Johnson Prize for nonfiction, the Hessell-Tiltman Prize for History, the Governor-General's award for nonfiction, and a New York Times best book of the year), Nixon and Mao, and Women of the Raj. A past provost of Trinity College at the University of Toronto, MacMillan is the warden of St. Antony's College at Oxford University.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 13, 2014

    Vintage Tuchman in two complimentary works that capture the foundational spirit of the early 20th Century.

    The descriptions of attitudes, clash of class, and overwhelming rush of change are brilliantly illuminated in these books and have a direct bearing on understanding our own times.

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