Item description for On War by Carl Von Clausewitz & J. J. Graham...
Writing at the time of Napoleon's greatest campaigns, Prussian soldier and writer Carl von Clausewitz created this landmark treatise on the art of warfare, which presented war as part of a coherent system of political thought. In line with Napoleon's own military actions, he illustrated the need to annihilate the enemy and make a strong display of one's power in an 'absolute war' without compromise. But he was also careful to distinguish between war and politics, arguing that war could only be justified when debate was no longer adequate, and that if undertaken, its aim should ultimately be to improve the wellbeing of the nation.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.5" Width: 7.5" Height: 9.5" Weight: 0.65 lbs.
Release Date Oct 12, 2005
ISBN 9568356207 ISBN13 9789568356200
Availability 138 units. Availability accurate as of May 27, 2017 08:20.
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I purchased the Everyman's Library edition of Von Clausewitz's On War for my husband, who is a military officer. He was deeply dissatisfied with the Penguin edition, which is awful in every respect, and so I went in search of an unabridged publication. The Everyman's library version is affordable at around twenty dollars, and expertly translated by the Princeton scholars Howard and Paret (who have a much more expensive but otherwise identical Princeton press edition published). It includes the entire unfinished work, including the books that focus on specifics of military tactics left out of the Penguin edition. My only complaint about this excellent edition, which incidentally features a very helpful "how to read this book" section, is that it is somewhat cheaply bound and may not hold up to prolonged and intense study over the years. It would be nice to have an attractively bound copy for display in a library or office, as well. I fear we may begin to lose pages if we are not careful, but at twenty dollars, the book is replaceable. Steer clear of penguin, and go straight to Howard and Paret. You won't be sorry.
Strategy ? - This book is required reading. Jun 12, 2008
This classic is required reading for any scholar or other person interested in strategic thinking, military command and decision making, leadership of large scale or complex endeavors.
Geo-Political Student May 22, 2008
Very well written. A must have book for any student or practicioner of the Art and Strategy of War and/or the History of War.
"War is nothing but a duel on an extensive scale." May 21, 2008
This is one of those books where one of my immediate questions before I begin is whether or not I have enough qualifications in the subject matter to get anything useful out of the material. Some writers can be read relatively cold. Others cannot. In terms of military theory, I haven't read more than a few primary texts: The Art Of War and The Book of Five Rings.
Since Von Clausewitz spends quite a bit of time on base definitions, I found that even given my lack of background in military theory I was able to follow and engage with the material. I am sure that someone who has a better background in the subject matter would get even more. I was satisfied that it was a good use of my time.
Personally, I found myself focusing the most on the distinction that Von Clausewitz makes between strategy and tactics. It felt important, and quite applicable even off the battlefield. Even if I was only considering that theme, there would have been more than enough material for me to chew over. I was actually surprised with how much I enjoyed the book and how I never felt bored or lost.
I read the Wordsworth Library edition, which was significantly abridged. The first books are translated and published in full, with the abridgment increasing as the books progressed. This irritated me a little bit, but I may well be inclined to trust the editor's judgment that a casual reader like myself need not read the entire work. This edition had a rather blessedly clear and helpful introduction by Louise Willmot.
Carl von Clauswitz Feb 29, 2008
A virtual bible for the historian. Rather disjointed in some areas but should be in every library.