War has been a perennial feature of human history since ancient times, yet it remains a poorly understood phenomenon. It has done much to shape our world, from overthrowing leaders, establishing international governance, and inspiring social change, to destroying cities, dividing nations and breeding animosity.
In this book, Dr Aaron Edwards succinctly combines political theories with historical realities. Using eyewitness accounts, war poetry and insightful analysis of a wide range of conflicts, War: A Beginner's Guide introduces the reader to the complexity and human face of war and invites readers to question whether violence is the most effective way to resolve disputes.
"As our societies become further disengaged from the military services that protect them, and our educational systems lose sight of the enduring value of history to educate our citizenry, we have lost touch with the human tragedy of war. This is a pity but War: A Beginner's Guide offers a timely remedy. Dr Edwards captures the essence of the political, social and technological realities of war over the ages in about as concise and clear a presentation I have ever seen. Readers looking for a well-crafted and superbly researched publication to reconnect with the deadly essence of human security, will find this book to be an invaluable resource."
– Lieutenant Colonel (Ret’d) F. G. Hoffman, National Defense University
"Aaron Edwards has produced a lively analysis of the big issues around warfare. His authoritative study draws on history and theory while also being right up to date on contemporary issues. It is an invaluable starting point for those looking at the issue of war from a range of perspectives, from history or war studies to philosophy or political science."
– Richard Grayson, Professor of Twentieth Century History, Department of History, Goldsmiths, University of London
"Edwards admirably pulls together the most important themes of war to provide a very solid foundation for any student, or indeed for any reader, wanting to learn more about the subject."
– Professor Antulio J. Echevarria II, US Army War College