The Shortest History of War: From Hunter-Gatherers to Nuclear Superpowers―A Retelling for Our Times

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One very typical way historians study the past is through the lens of war, which wars were fought, by whom, and why; what were the causes; and what the ramifications. This lens is useful because we humans have been fighting each other since before history even began. This book is unique because, rather than examining any individual war, it looks at the “How”: how wars and conflicts were enacted and how that evolved over time.

For millennia, wars were fought in a similar way, even as technology evolved. However, the wars of the 20th century and beyond changed warfare completely. How we got from limited inter-tribal aggressions to nuclear war is a fascinating story, albeit a tragic one.

Interspersed throughout the book are quotations from soldiers, combatants, and civilians, giving first-hand glimpses into the personal experience. These, and the many photos and diagrams, are an exciting and essential addition to the text. Nods to politics and popular culture also drive home the message for our modern day. Ultimately, no matter what the causes of conflict, but especially in our nuclear era, you realize that in war, the only way to win is not to play.

Reviewed By:

Author Gwynne Dyer
Star Count 5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 256 pages
Publisher The Experiment
Publish Date 02-Aug-2022
ISBN 9781615199303 Buy this Book
Issue January 2024
Category History