Have humans always fought and killed each other, or did they peacefully coexist until states developed? Is war an expression of human nature or an artifact of civilization? Questions about the origin and inherent motivations of warfare have long engaged philosophers, ethicists, anthropologists as they speculate on the nature of human existence. In How War Began, author Keith F. Otterbein draws on primate behavior research, archaeological research, data gathered from the Human Relations Area Files, and a career spent in research and reflection on war to argue for two separate origins. He identifies two types of military organization: one which developed two million years ago at the dawn of humankind, wherever groups of hunters met, and a second which developed some five thousand years ago, in four identifiable regions, when the first states arose and proceeded to embark upon military conquests. In carefully selected detail, Otterbein marshals the evidence for his case that warfare was possible and likely among early Homo sapiens. He argues from analogy with other primates, from Paleolithic rock art depicting wounded humans, and from rare skeletal remains with embedded weapon points to conclude that warfare existed and reached a peak in big game hunting societies. As the big game disappeared, so did warfare—only to reemerge once agricultural societies achieved a degree of political complexity that allowed the development of professional military organizations. Otterbein concludes his survey with an analysis of how despotism in both ancient and modern states spawns warfare. A definitive resource for anthropologists, social scientists and historians, How War Began is written for all who are interested in warfare and individuals who seek to understand the past and the present of humankind.
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Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Liberia, Somalia, Azerbaijan, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Lebanon, Cambodia -- all provide bloody evidence that civil wars continue to have a powerful impact on the international scene. Because they tear at the very fabric of a society and pit countryman against countryman, civil wars are often the most brutal and difficult to extinguish -- witness the American Revolution. And yet, civil wars do inevitably end. England is no longer criss-crossed by warring armies representing York and Lancaster or King and Parliament. The French no longer kill one another over the divine right of kings. Argentines seem reconciled to living in a single state, rather than several. The ideologies of the Spanish Civil War now seem largely irrelevant. And the possibility of Southern secession is an issue long-buried in the American past. The question then begs itself: how do people who have been killing one another with considerable enthusiasm and success come together to form a common government? How can individuals and factions work together, politically and economically, with others who have killed their friends, parents, children and lovers? How are armed societies disarmed? What effect does a total military victory have on a lasting peace? In sum, how are civil societies constructed from civil violence and chaos? This is the central concern of Stopping the Killing. In this highly original and much needed volume, a distinguished group of experts on civil wars discuss both specific conflicts and broader theoretical issues. Individual chapters examine civil wars in Colombia, the Sudan, Yemen, America, Greece, and Nigeria, and analyze the causes of peace, the relationship between the battlefield and the negotiating table, and issues of settlement. An introduction and conclusion by the editor unify the volume. Contributors include: Jonathan Hartlyn (Univ. of North Carolina), Caroline Hartzell (Univ. of California, Davis), Jane E. Holl (U.S. Military Academy), John Iatrides (Southern Connecticut State University), James O'Connell (University of Bradford), Donald Rothchild (Univ. of California, Davis), Stephen John Stedman (Johns Hopkins Univ.), Robert Harrison Wagner (Univ. of Texas, Austin), Harvey Waterman (Rutgers Univ.), Manfred Wenner (Northern Illinois Univ.), and I. William Zartman (Johns Hopkins Univ.).
In this book, Richard Clutterbuck examines the experience of crisis management and war in history, mainly through 24 case studies, culminating in the Gulf, Somalia, Cambodia and Bosnia in 1990-93. He examines the disintegration of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia, the opening of West European frontiers, and the conflicts arising or likely to arise from them. He considers the opportunities for resolving conflicts by the post Cold War UN Security Council, and the enormous potential of NATO now that it is no longer tied to the iron curtain. He forecasts the patterns of future conflict, and the prospects of keeping the peace.
50th Anniversary Edition Do you know the history of the pushcart war? The REAL history? it’s a story of how regular people banded together and, armed with little more than their brains and good aim defeated a mighty foe. Not long ago the streets of New York City were smelly, smoggy, sooty, and loud. There were so many trucks making deliveries that it might take an hour for a car to travel a few blocks. People blamed the truck owners and the truck owners blamed the little wooden pushcarts that traveled the city selling everything from flowers to hot dogs. Behind closed doors the truck owners declared war on the pushcart peddlers. Carts were smashed from Chinatown to Chelsea. The peddlers didn’t have money or the mayor on their side, but that didn’t stop them from fighting back. They used pea shooters to blow tacks into the tires of trucks, they outwitted the police, and they marched right up to the grilles of those giant trucks and dared them to drive down their streets. Today, thanks to the ingenuity of the pushcart peddlers, the streets belong to the people—and to the pushcarts. The Pushcart War was first published fifty years ago. It has inspired generations of children and been adapted for television, radio, and the stage around the world. It was included on School Library Journal’s list of “One Hundred Books That Shaped the Twentieth Century,” and its assertion that a committed group of men and women can prevail against a powerful force is as relevant in the twenty-first century as it was in 1964.
Why Wars Happen is a groundbreaking inquiry into the crucial yet surprisingly understudied question of why wars occur. Jeremy Black, one of Britain's foremost military historians, presents an interdisciplinary study that draws on subjects such as history, political science, and international relations and marshals a vast range of material with global examples spanning from the fifteenth century to today. Black examines several major modern wars in their historical contexts, taking into account cultural differences and various conflict theories. He analyzes the three main types of war—between cultures, within cultures, and civil—and explores the problems of defining war. Black's investigation inspires fascinating questions such as: Do wars reflect the bellicosity in societies and states, or do they largely arise as a result of a diplomatic breakdown? How closely is war linked to changes in the nature of warfare, the international system, or the internal character of states? Black also considers contemporary situations and evaluates the possible course of future wars. Offering a valuable and thought-provoking analysis on the causes of war and conflicts, Why Wars Happen will interest historians and readers of military history alike.
Historians know a great deal about how wars begin, but far less about how they end. Whilst much has been written about the forces, passions, and institutions that mobilized societies for war and worked to sustain that mobilization through years of struggle, much less is known about the equally complex processes that demobilized societies in the wake of armed conflict. As such, this new book will be welcomed by scholars wishing to understand the effects of the Great War in its fullest context, including the reactions, behaviors, and attitudes of 'ordinary' Europeans during the tumultuous events of the years of demobilization. Taking a transnational perspective on demobilization this study demonstrates that the experience of mass industrial war generated remarkably similar pressures within both the defeated and victorious countries. Using as examples the important provincial centres of Munich and Manchester, this book examines the experiences of European urban-dwellers from the last year of the war until the early 1920s. Utilizing a wide variety of sources from more than twenty archives in Germany, Britain, and the United States, this book recovers voices from the period that are often lost in conventional narratives, capturing the richness and diversity of the ideas, visions, and conflicts engendered by those difficult and tumultuous years. The result is a book that paints a vivid picture of the difficulties that peace could bring to economies and societies that had rapidly and fully adapted to the demands of industrial world war.