War Stars / Edition 1

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In this new and expanded edition of an already classic work, H. Bruce Franklin brings the epic story of the superweapon and the American imagination into the ominous twenty-first century, demonstrating its continuing importance both to comprehending our current predicament and to finding ways to escape from it.

Sweeping through two centuries of American culture and military history, Franklin traces the evolution of superweapons from Robert Fulton's eighteenth-century submarine through the strategic bomber, atomic bomb, and Star Wars to a twenty-first century dominated by "weapons of mass destruction," real and imagined. Interweaving culture, science, technology, and history, he shows how and why the American pursuit of the ultimate defensive weapon-guaranteed to end all war and bring universal triumph to American ideals-has led our nation and the world into an epoch of terror and endless war.

About the Author:
H. Bruce Franklin is John Cotton Dana Professor of English and American Studies at Rutgers University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781558496514
  • Publisher: University of Massachusetts Press
  • Publication date: 5/16/2008
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 1,427,396
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

About the Author
H. Bruce Franklin, author or editor of fifteen books on culture and history, is The John Cotton Dana Professor of English and American Studies at Rutgers University.
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Table of Contents

Introduction Imagining Our Weapons 3

I Beyond Manifest Destiny

1 Robert Fulton and the Weapons of Progress 9

2 Fantasies of War: 1880-1917 19

3 Thomas Edison and the Industrialization of War 54

II Victory through Air Power

4 Peace Is Our Profession 81

5 Billy Mitchell and the Romance of the Bomber 91

6 The Triumph of the Bombers 101

7 The Final Catch 112

III Chain Reactions

8 Don't Worry, It's Only Science Fiction 131

9 Atomic Decision 149

10 The Rise of Nuclear Culture 155

11 The Baruch Plan: American Science Fiction 162

12 Nuclear Scenarios 166

13 Early Warnings 170

14 Triumphs of Nuclear Culture 180

IV End Games

15 Exit Strategies 191

16 Star Wars 200

17 The Age of the Automatons 206

18 The End! 213

V Pax Americana; Or, The Superweapon and the Twenty-first-Century American Imagination

19 The Science-Fiction Project for the New American Century 217

20 Mushroom Cloud Over Cincinnati; Or, The Terrorized Empire 221

21 The New American Century; Or, The Age of Terror 224

22 The Unimaginable 231

Notes 233

Bibliography of Fiction Discussed 253

Index 259

Illustrations follow page 77

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