Why do military commanders, most of them usually quite capable, fail at crucial moments of their careers? Robert Pois and Philip Langerone a historian, the other an educational psychologiststudy seven cases of military command failures, from Frederick the Great at Kunersdorf to Hitler’s invasion of Russia. While the authors recognize the value of psychological theorizing, they do not believe that one method can cover all the individuals, battles, or campaigns under examination. Instead, they judiciously take a number of psycho-historical approaches in hope of shedding light on the behaviors of commanders during war. The other battles and commanders studied here are Napoleon in Russia, George B. McClellan’s Peninsular Campaign, Robert E. Lee and Pickett’s Charge at Gettysburg, John Bell Hood at the Battle of Franklin, Douglas Haig and the British command during World War I, "Bomber" Harris and the Strategic Bombing of Germany, and Stalingrad.
|Publisher:||Indiana University Press|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.99(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Robert Pois (1940-2004) was Professor of History at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Among his books are The Great War; National Socialism and the Religion of Nature ; and Friedrich Meinecke and German Politics in the Twentieth Century.
Philip Langer is Professor of Educational Psychology and Faculty Fellow of the Institute of Cognitive Science at the University of Colorado-Boulder. He lives in Boulder, Colorado.
Table of Contents
1. Frederick the Great at Kunersdorf, August 12, 1759
2. Napoleon in Russia, 1812
3. McClellan's Flawed Campaign: The Wounded Ego
4. Lee at Gettysburg: The Failure of Success
5. Franklin, Tennessee: The Wrong Enemy
6. Beyond Conventional Historical Explanations: The British Military in World War I
7. Winston Churchill, Arthur Harris, and British Strategic Bombing
8. Stalingrad: A Ghastly Collaboration between Hitler and His Generals
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This scintillating and intriguing look at the mindset of great military leaders is not for the faint of heart or those looking for a quick read. Pois and Langer's prose reads like that of a beloved professor and mentor, a dialogue for the scholarly mind, bantering tidbits of history and human nature back and forth. The effort to explain how great men of history reached decisions and came to action drives the book; additionally, the writers also draw the reader through their thought processes. Each chapter provides original thinking and ideas. In short, this is a book best sipped rather than gulped.