It has long been acknowledged that the study of war and warfare demands careful consideration of technology, institutions, social organization, and more. But, for some, the so-called "war and society" approach increasingly included everything but explained nothing, because it all too often seemed to ignore the events on the battlefield itself. The military historians in Warfare and Culture in World History return us to the battlefield, but they do so through a deep examination of the role of culture in shaping military institutions and military choices. Collected here are some of the most provocative recent efforts to analyze warfare through a cultural lens, drawing on and aggressively expanding traditional scholarship on war and society through sophisticated cultural analysis. With chapters ranging from an organizational analysis of American Civil War field armies to the soldiers' culture of late Republican Rome and debates within Ming Chinese officialdom over extermination versus pacification, this one volume provides a full range of case studies of how culture, whether societal, strategic, organizational, or military, could shape not only military institutions but also actual battlefield choices.
Warfare and Culture in World History
New York University Press
Education & Reference