Essay on How Do Military Hilitorians Explain War?

Essay on How Do Military Hilitorians Explain War?

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How do military historians explain war? To answer a question like this, one must look to the scholarship. However, works alone cannot explain the total scope of war, which means that historians take from the scholarship, and input what they deem necessary to the explanation of war. The Western experiences of war shaped the outcome of further study into warfare. Authors like Victor Davis Hanson, John Lynn, John Keegan, Martin van Creveld, and Niall Ferguson explain in detail to what extent the Western way of war is superior to any other.
The goal in studying the Western way of war revolves around the concept of superiority in warfare. The comparison and distinction of Victor Davis Hanson, Carnage and Culture (2001), and John A. Lynn, Battle (2003), emphasized their overwhelming background in military research. Both historians possessed the adequate means to tell an incredible military story of which Hanson excelled at the ancient level with Greco-Roman history and Lynn as an expert of European history of the eighteenth and nineteenth century’s between the periods of Louis XIV and Napoleon. Hanson concluded that the Western way of war is far superior to that of the Eastern, and he begun his research with the Greek civilization and their early form of democracy. Alternatively, Lynn centered his research on the influences and/or limitations of the political and social aspects of warfare including that of the East.
The greatest single work to influence either historian was John Keegan’s book, A History of Warfare (1993). Lynn acknowledged the importance of Keegan’s thesis, but Hanson followed in the Western superiority theme originated by Keegan. Hanson published his work in 2001 before the 911 attacks and added an a...


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...usewitz, Genius, and the Rules.” The Journal of Military History Vol. 66, No.4 (Oct., 2002): 1167-1176. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3093268
Rothenberg, Gunther E. Review of Battle: A History of Combat and Culture, by John A. Lynn. The Journal of Military History Vol. 68, No. 3 (Jul., 2004): 943-945. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3396733
Van Creveld, Martin. “The Clausewitzian Universe and the Law of War.”
Journal of Contemporary History Vol. 26, No. 3/4, The Impact of Western Nationalisms: Essays Dedicated to Walter Z. Laqueur on the Occasion of His 70th Birthday (Sep., 1991): 403-429. http://www.jstor.org/stable/260653
Wert, Hal Elliott. Review of Carnage and Culture: Landmark Battles in the Rise of Western Power, by Victor Davis Hanson. The Journal of Military History Vol. 67, No. 2 (Apr., 2003): 545-547. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3093471

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