AT EASE BOOK OF THE MONTH
THOROUGHLY convinced that ‘war remains one of the chief human mysteries’ the author of this important new book, Margaret MacMillan, has bravely cranked open a Pandora’s Box of truths, both ugly and beautiful, revealing our genetic propensity for conflict.
And while the idea of war studies often repels the many who would prefer to examine the history of peace, Professor Margaret MacMillan urges us never to turn a blind eye to the centuries of battles which have raged across the world ever since humans started organising themselves into societies.
MacMillan argues: “We have to include war in our study of human history if we are to make any sense of the past. War’s effects have been so profound that to leave it out is to ignore one of the great forces along with geography, resources, economics, ideas and social and political changes, which have shaped human development and changed history.”
In this page-turner containing nine chapters of brilliant clear-thinking, she asks important questions. Does war bring out the bestial side of human nature or the best? She examines the role of the leader, including Napoleon’s rise in popularity, and Hitler’s downfall. To wage a war was through the centuries perceived as strong, forceful, decisive and heroic. To lose it was a disgrace prompting civil unrest.