Victor Davis Hanson

1 A War Like No Other

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Ancient  Books  History  Military 
Price :  $1.99
Release Date :  2005-10-04
Description :  One of our most provocative military historians, Victor Davis Hanson has given us painstakingly researched and pathbreaking accounts of wars ranging from classical antiquity to the twenty-first century. Now he juxtaposes an ancient conflict with our most urgent modern concerns to create his most engrossing work to date, A War Like No Other.<br /><br />Over the course of a generation, the Hellenic city-states of Athens and Sparta fought a bloody conflict that resulted in the collapse of Athens and the end of its golden age. Thucydides wrote the standard history of the Peloponnesian War, which has given readers throughout the ages a vivid and authoritative narrative. But Hanson offers readers something new: a complete chronological account that reflects the political background of the time, the strategic thinking of the combatants, the misery of battle in multifaceted theaters, and important insight into how these events echo in the present.<br /><br />Hanson compellingly portrays the ways Athens and Sparta fought on land and sea, in city and countryside, and details their employment of the full scope of conventional and nonconventional tactics, from sieges to targeted assassinations, torture, and terrorism. He also assesses the crucial roles played by warriors such as Pericles and Lysander, artists, among them Aristophanes, and thinkers including Sophocles and Plato.<br /><br />Hanson’s perceptive analysis of events and personalities raises many thought-provoking questions: Were Athens and Sparta like America and Russia, two superpowers battling to the death? Is the Peloponnesian War echoed in the endless, frustrating conflicts of Vietnam, Northern Ireland, and the current Middle East? Or was it more like America’s own Civil War, a brutal rift that rent the fabric of a glorious society, or even this century’s “red state—blue state” schism between liberals and conservatives, a cultural war that manifestly controls military policies? Hanson daringly brings the facts to life and unearths the often surprising ways in which the past informs the present.<br /><br />Brilliantly researched, dynamically written, A War Like No Other is like no other history of this important war.

2 The Savior Generals

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History 
Price :  $12.99
Release Date :  2013-05-14
Description :  Prominent military historian Victor Davis Hanson explores the nature of leadership with his usual depth and vivid prose in <i>The Savior Generals</i>, a set of brilliantly executed pocket biographies of five generals (Themistocles, Belisarius, William Tecumseh Sherman, Matthew Ridgway, and David Petraeus)<b> </b>who single-handedly saved their nations from defeat in war. War is rarely a predictable enterprise-it is a mess of luck, chance, and incalculable variables. Today's sure winner can easily become tomorrow's doomed loser. Sudden, sharp changes in fortune can reverse the course of war.<br /><br />These intractable circumstances are sometimes mastered by leaders of genius-asked at the eleventh hour to save a hopeless conflict, one created by others and frequently unpopular politically and with the public. The savior generals often come from outside the established power structure, employ radical strategies, and flame out quickly. Their careers regularly end in controversy. But their dramatic feats of leadership are vital slices of history-not merely as stirring military narrative, but as lessons on the dynamic nature of consensus, leadership, and destiny.

3 The Second World Wars

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History  Europe  World 
Price :  $22.99
Release Date :  2017-10-17
Description :  <b><br />A definitive account of World War II by America's preeminent military historian</b><br /><br />World War II was the most lethal conflict in human history. Never before had a war been fought on so many diverse landscapes and in so many different ways, from rocket attacks in London to jungle fighting in Burma to armor strikes in Libya.<br /><br /><i>The Second World Wars </i>examines how combat unfolded in the air, at sea, and on land to show how distinct conflicts among disparate combatants coalesced into one interconnected global war. Drawing on 3,000 years of military history, Victor Davis Hanson argues that despite its novel industrial barbarity, neither the war's origins nor its geography were unusual. Nor was its ultimate outcome surprising. The Axis powers were well prepared to win limited border conflicts, but once they blundered into global war, they had no hope of victory.<br /><br />An authoritative new history of astonishing breadth, <i>The Second World Wars</i> offers a stunning reinterpretation of history's deadliest conflict.<br />

4 Carnage and Culture

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History  Nonfiction  Social Science  Politics & Current Events 
Price :  $12.99
Release Date :  2001-08-14
Description :  Examining nine landmark battles from ancient to modern times--from Salamis, where outnumbered Greeks devastated the slave army of Xerxes, to Cortes’s conquest of Mexico to the Tet offensive--Victor Davis Hanson explains why the armies of the West have been the most lethal and effective of any fighting forces in the world.<br /><br />Looking beyond popular explanations such as geography or superior technology, Hanson argues that it is in fact Western culture and values–the tradition of dissent, the value placed on inventiveness and adaptation, the concept of citizenship–which have consistently produced superior arms and soldiers. Offering riveting battle narratives and a balanced perspective that avoids simple triumphalism, <b>Carnage and Culture</b> demonstrates how armies cannot be separated from the cultures that produce them and explains why an army produced by a free culture will always have the advantage.<br /><br /><i>From the Trade Paperback edition.</i>

5 How The Obama Administration Threatens Our National Security

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Politics & Current Events  Books 
Price :  $5.99
Release Date :  2010-01-01
Description :  In this revealing broadside, Victor Davis Hanson explains how President Obama has imprinted his domestic ideology of victimhood onto a therapeutic, Carter-inspired foreign policy. In Obama’s vision, the United State renounces its role as a defender of the postwar order and instead becomes an agent of global change – one that questions our existing system of defense, values, alliances, interests, and commerce.<br /><br />In tactical terms, Obama believes that his 'hope-and-change' rhetoric and non-traditional background give him a moral authority abroad that will trump any inconsistency in U.S. foreign policy. But, as Hanson explains, at some future date, regional hegemons like Iran, Russia and China will demand even more acquiescence on the theory that the present government of the United States either will not object, or will do nothing concrete to stop them.

6 The End of Sparta

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Historical  Books  Fiction & Literature 
Price :  $12.99
Release Date :  2011-10-18
Description :  In this sweeping and deeply imagined historical novel, acclaimed classicist Victor Davis Hanson re-creates the battles of one of the greatest generals of ancient Greece, Epaminondas. At the Battle of Leuktra, his Thebans crushed the fearsome army of Sparta that had enslaved its neighbors for two centuries.<br /><br />We follow these epic historical events through the eyes of Mêlon, a farmer who has left his fields to serve with Epaminondas-swept up, against his better judgment, in the fever to spread democracy even as he yearns to return to his pastoral hillside.<br /><br />With a scholar's depth of knowledge and a novelist's vivid imagination, Hanson re-creates the ancient world down to its intimate details-from the weight of a spear in a soldier's hand to the peculiar camaraderie of a slave and master who go into battle side by side. <i>The End of Sparta</i> is a stirring drama and a rich, absorbing reading experience.<br /><br /><b>Praise for Victor Davis Hanson:</b> <br /><br />"I have never read another book that explains so well the truth that 'war lies in the dark hearts of us all' but that history offers hope."-William Shawcross on <i>The Father of Us All</i><br /><br />"Few writers cover both current events and history-and none with the brilliance and erudition of Victor Davis Hanson."-Max Boot on <i>The Father of Us All</i><br />"Enthralling."-Christopher Hitchens on <i>The Western Way of War</i>

7 The Western Way of War

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History 
Price :  $19.99
Release Date :  1989-04-15
Description :  The Greeks of the classical age invented not only the central idea of Western politics--that the power of state should be guided by a majority of its citizens--but also the central act of Western warfare, the decisive infantry battle. Instead of ambush, skirmish, maneuver, or combat between individual heroes, the Greeks of the fifth century b.c. devised a ferocious, brief, and destructive head-on clash between armed men of all ages. In this bold, original study, Victor Davis Hanson shows how this brutal enterprise was dedicated to the same outcome as consensual government--an unequivocal, instant resolution to dispute.<br /><br />The Western Way of War&#xa0;draws from an extraordinary range of sources--Greek poetry, drama, and vase painting, as well as historical records--to describe what actually took place on the battlefield. It is the first study to explore the actual mechanics of classical Greek battle from the vantage point of the infantryman--the brutal spear-thrusting, the difficulty of fighting in heavy bronze armor which made it hard to see, hear and move, and the fear. Hanson also discusses the physical condition and age of the men, weaponry, wounds, and morale.<br /><br />This compelling account of what happened on the killing fields of the ancient Greeks ultimately shows that their style of armament and battle was contrived to minimize time and life lost by making the battle experience as decisive and appalling as possible. Linking this new style of fighting to the rise of constitutional government, Hanson raises new issues and questions old assumptions about the history of war.

8 The Father of Us All

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  History  Books 
Price :  $13.99
Release Date :  2010-05-03
Description :  Victor Davis Hanson has long been acclaimed as one of our leading scholars of ancient history. In recent years he has also become a trenchant voice on current affairs, bringing a historian's deep knowledge of past conflicts to bear on the crises of the present, from 9/11 to Iran. "War," he writes, "is an entirely human enterprise." Ideologies change, technologies develop, new strategies are invented-but human nature is constant across time and space. The dynamics of warfare in the present age still remain comprehensible to us through careful study of the past. Though many have called the War on Terror unprecedented, its contours would have been quite familiar to Themistocles of Athens or William Tecumseh Sherman. And as we face the menace of a bin Laden or a Kim Jong-Il, we can prepare ourselves with knowledge of how such challenges have been met before.<br /><br /><i>The Father of Us All </i>brings together much of Hanson's finest writing on war and society, both ancient and modern. The author has gathered a range of essays, and combined and revised them into a richly textured new work that explores such topics as how technology shapes warfare, what constitutes the "American way of war," and why even those who abhor war need to study military history. "War is the father and king of us all," Heraclitus wrote in ancient Greece. And as Victor Davis Hanson shows, it is no less so today.

9 Mexifornia

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  United States  Books  History  Nonfiction  Social Science 
Price :  $17.99
Release Date :  2016-04-19
Description :  Victor Davis Hanson locates the cause of our immigration quagmire in the opportunistic coalition that stymies immigration reform and, even worse, stifles any honest discussion of the present crisis. Conservative corporations, contractors and agribusiness demand cheap wage labor from Mexico, whatever the social consequences. Meanwhile, “progressive” academics, journalists, government bureaucrats and La Raza advocates see illegal aliens as a vast new political constituency for those peddling the notion that victimhood, not citizenship, is the key to advancement. The troubles Hanson identifies may have reached critical mass in California, but they also affect Americans who inhabit “Mexizona,” “Mexichusetts” and other states of becoming.<br /><br />Hanson follows the fortunes of Hispanic friends he has known all his life—how they have succeeded in America and how they regard the immigration quandary. But if <i>Mexifornia</i> is an emotionally generous look at the ambition and vigor of people who have made California strong, it is also an indictment of the policies that got California into its present mess. In the end, Hanson is hopeful that our traditions of assimilation, integration and intermarriage may yet remedy a predicament that the politicians and ideologues have allowed to get out of hand.

10 The Life of Alexander the Great

Author : Plutarch, John Dryden, Arthur Hugh Clough & Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Biographies & Memoirs  Books  History  Ancient 
Price :  $8.99
Release Date :  2004-04-13
Description :  In 336 b.c. Philip of Macedonia was assassinated and his twenty-year-old son, Alexander, inherited his kingdom. Immediately quelling rebellion, Alexander extended his father’s empire through-out the Middle East and into parts of Asia, fulfilling the soothsayer Aristander’s prediction that the new king “should perform acts so important and glorious as would make the poets and musicians of future ages labour and sweat to describe and celebrate him.” <br /><br /><b>The Life of Alexander the Great</b> is one of the first surviving attempts to memorialize the achievements of this legendary king, remembered today as the greatest military genius of all time. This exclusive Modern Library edition, excerpted from <b>Plutarch’s Lives</b>, is a riveting tale of honor, power, scandal, and bravery written by the most eminent biographer of the ancient world.<br /><br /><i>From the Trade Paperback edition.</i>

11 Ripples of Battle

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History  Nonfiction  Social Science  Health, Mind & Body  Psychology 
Price :  $12.99
Release Date :  2003-09-16
Description :  The effects of war refuse to remain local: they persist through the centuries, sometimes in unlikely ways far removed from the military arena. In <b>Ripples of Battle</b>,<i> </i>the acclaimed historian Victor Davis Hanson weaves wide-ranging military and cultural history with his unparalleled gift for battle narrative as he illuminates the centrality of war in the human experience.<br /><br />The Athenian defeat at Delium in 424 BC brought tactical innovations to infantry fighting; it also assured the influence of the philosophy of Socrates, who fought well in the battle. Nearly twenty-three hundred years later, the carnage at Shiloh and the death of the brilliant Southern strategist Albert Sidney Johnson inspired a sense of fateful tragedy that would endure and stymie Southern culture for decades. The Northern victory would also bolster the reputation of William Tecumseh Sherman, and inspire Lew Wallace to pen the classic<i> </i><b>Ben Hur</b><i>.</i> And, perhaps most resonant for our time, the agony of Okinawa spurred the Japanese toward state-sanctioned suicide missions, a tactic so uncompromising and subversive, it haunts our view of non-Western combatants to this day.<br /><br /><i>From the Trade Paperback edition.</i>

12 Makers of Ancient Strategy

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Ancient  Books  History  Politics & Current Events  Military 
Price :  $16.99
Release Date :  2010-03-01
Description :  In this prequel to the now-classic <i>Makers of Modern Strategy</i>, Victor Davis Hanson, a leading scholar of ancient military history, gathers prominent thinkers to explore key facets of warfare, strategy, and foreign policy in the Greco-Roman world. From the Persian Wars to the final defense of the Roman Empire, <i>Makers of Ancient Strategy</i> demonstrates that the military thinking and policies of the ancient Greeks and Romans remain surprisingly relevant for understanding conflict in the modern world.<br /><br /> The book reveals that much of the organized violence witnessed today--such as counterterrorism, urban fighting, insurgencies, preemptive war, and ethnic cleansing--has ample precedent in the classical era. The book examines the preemption and unilateralism used to instill democracy during Epaminondas's great invasion of the Peloponnesus in 369 BC, as well as the counterinsurgency and terrorism that characterized Rome's battles with insurgents such as Spartacus, Mithridates, and the Cilician pirates. The collection looks at the urban warfare that became increasingly common as more battles were fought within city walls, and follows the careful tactical strategies of statesmen as diverse as Pericles, Demosthenes, Alexander, Pyrrhus, Caesar, and Augustus. <i>Makers of Ancient Strategy</i> shows how Greco-Roman history sheds light on wars of every age. In addition to the editor, the contributors are David L. Berkey, Adrian Goldsworthy, Peter J. Heather, Tom Holland, Donald Kagan, John W. I. Lee, Susan Mattern, Barry Strauss, and Ian Worthington.

13 An Autumn of War

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Politics & Current Events  Books  History  Military 
Price :  $4.99
Release Date :  2002-08-13
Description :  On September 11, 2001, hours after the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, the eminent military historian Victor Davis Hanson wrote an article in which he asserted that the United States, like it or not, was now at war and had the moral right to respond with force. <b>An Autumn of War</b>, which opens with that first essay, will stimulate readers across the political spectrum to think more deeply about the attacks, the war, and their lessons for all of us.<br /><br /><i>From the Trade Paperback edition.</i>

14 Bonfire of the Humanities

Author : Victor Davis Hanson, John Heath & Bruce S. Thornton
Genre :  Biographies & Memoirs  Books 
Price :  $9.99
Release Date :  2014-05-27
Description :  With humor, lucidity, and unflinching rigor, the acclaimed authors of&#xa0;<i>Who Killed Homer?</i>&#xa0;and&#xa0;<i>Plagues of the Mind</i>&#xa0;unsparingly document the degeneration of a central, if beleaguered, discipline—classics—and reveal the root causes of its decline. Hanson, Heath, and Thornton point to academics themselves—their careerist ambitions, incessant self-promotion, and overspecialized scholarship, among other things—as the progenitors of the crisis, and call for a return to “academic populism,” an approach characterized by accessible, unspecialized writing, selfless commitment to students and teaching, and respect for the legacy of freedom and democracy that the ancients bequeathed to the West.<br /><br />“The authors, who define their own enterprise as ‘academic populism,’ address this [academic] elitism and hypocrisy in a series of scathing essays and book reviews.” —<i>Publishers Weekly</i><br /><br />“This is an important book for those who wish to give the classics a primary place in the education of our youth and for all those who care about quality teaching.” —<i>Sunday Times</i><br /><br />“Readers who enjoy common sense expressed in vigorous prose are going to love&#xa0;<i>Bonfire of the Humanities</i>.” —<i>Academic Questions</i><br /><br />“This is a valuable book for its sustained attempt to stimulate thought about how classics and the humanities in general should be approached.” —<i>Bryn Mawr Classical Review</i><br /><br />Bruce S. Thornton grew up on a cattle ranch in Fresno, California. His father was a cowboy and a barber who never attended high school, his mother the child of Italian immigrants. From an early age, Thornton worked on the ranch, and from the experience he acquired a practical realism, a clear-eyed acceptance of the concrete, harsh realities sometimes overlooked or ignored in the ivory-tower academy. He received his B.A. in Latin and Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from UCLA and is currently professor of Classics and Humanities in the Department of Foreign Languages at California State University in Fresno. Thornton is the author of&#xa0;<i>Eros: The Myth of Ancient Greek Sexuality</i>,&#xa0;<i>Greek Ways: How the Greeks Created Western Civilization</i>, and&#xa0;<i>Plagues of the Mind</i>.<br /><br />Victor Davis Hanson is a professor of Greek and Director of the Classics Program at California State University, Fresno. He is the author or editor of nine books, including&#xa0;<i>The Other Greeks</i>&#xa0;(Free Press, 1995),<i>&#xa0;Fields Without Dreams: Defending the Agrarian Ideal</i>&#xa0;(Free Press, 1996),&#xa0;<i>Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom</i>&#xa0;(with John Heath, Free Press, 1998), and&#xa0;<i>The Soul of Battle</i>&#xa0;(Free Press, 1999). In 1992 he was named the most outstanding undergraduate teacher of classics in the nation.<br /><br />John Heath is associate professor of classics at Santa Clara University. His books include&#xa0;<i>Actaeon, the Unmannerly Intruder</i>&#xa0;(Peter Lang, 1992) and&#xa0;<i>Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education</i>&#xa0;<i>and the</i>&#xa0;<i>Recovery of Greek Wisdom&#xa0;</i>(with Victor Davis Hanson, Free Press, 1998).<br />&#xa0;

15 Other Greeks

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  History  Books 
Price :  $18.99
Release Date :  1995-06-01
Description :  Everyone has been taught that the Greek city-state is the ultimate source of the Western tradition in literature, philosophy, and politics. For generations, scholars have focused on the rise of the city-state and its brilliant cosmopolitan culture. Now Victor Hanson, the author of several studies of ancient warfare and agriculture, has written a book that will completely change our view of Greek society. For Hanson shows that the real "Greek revolution" was not the rise of a free and democratic urban culture, remarkable as this was, but the historic innovation of the independent family farm. The heroes of his book, therefore, are what he calls "the other Greeks" - the neglected freehold farmers, vinegrowers and herdsmen of ancient Greece who formed the backbone of Hellenic civilization. It was these tough-minded, pracitcal, and fiercely independent agrarians, Hanson contends, who gave Greek culture its distinctive emphasis on private property, constitutional government, contractual agreements, infantry warfare, and individual rights. <br /><br /> Hanson's reconstruction of ancient Greek farm life, informed by the hands-on knowledge of the subject (he is a fifth-generation California vine and fruit-grower), is fresh, comprehensive, and totally absorbing. But his detailed chronicle of the rise and tragic fall of the Greek city-state also helps us to grasp the implications of what may be the single most significant trend in American life today - namely, the imminent extinction of the family farm. <br /><br /> Since Thomas Jefferson Hanson points out, American democracy has been though to depend on the virtues that have traditionally been bred on the farm: self-reliance, honesty, skepticism, a healthy suspicion of urban sophistication, and a stern ethic of accountability, which, as the Greeks teach us, have always been the core values of democratic citizenship. Hanson rightly fears the consequences for American democracy when the family farm disappears, taking with it our last links to the agrarian roots of Western civilization.

16 Between War and Peace

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Military  Books  History  Politics & Current Events 
Price :  $4.99
Release Date :  2004-02-10
Description :  In his acclaimed collection <b>An Autumn of War</b>, the scholar and military historian Victor Davis Hanson expressed powerful and provocative views of September 11 and the ensuing war in Afghanistan. Now, in these challenging new essays, he examines the world’s ongoing war on terrorism, from America to Iraq, from Europe to Israel, and beyond.<br /><br /> In direct language, Hanson portrays an America making progress against Islamic fundamentalism but hampered by the self-hatred of elite academics at home and the cynical self-interest of allies abroad. He sees a new and urgent struggle of evil against good, one that can fail only if “we convince ourselves that our enemies fight because of something we, rather than they, did.”<br /><br /> Whether it’s a clear-cut defense of Israel as a secular democracy, a denunciation of how the U.N. undermines the U.S., a plea to drastically alter our alliance with Saudi Arabia, or a perception that postwar Iraq is reaching a dangerous tipping point, Hanson’s arguments have the shock of candor and the fire of conviction.<br /><br /><i>From the Trade Paperback edition.</i>

17 Warfare and Agriculture in Classical Greece, Revised edition

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Ancient  Books  History 
Price :  $21.99
Release Date :  1998-10-20
Description :  The ancient Greeks were for the most part a rural, not an urban, society. And for much of the Classical period, war was more common than peace. Almost all accounts of ancient history assume that farming and fighting were critical events in the lives of the citizenry. Yet never before have we had a comprehensive modern study of the relationship between agriculture and warfare in the Greek world. In this completely revised edition of <i>Warfare and Agriculture in Classical Greece</i>, Victor Davis Hanson provides a systematic review of Greek agriculture and warfare and describes the relationship between these two important aspects of life in ancient communities. With careful attention to agronomic as well as military details, this well-written, thoroughly researched study reveals the remarkable resilience of those farmland communities.<br /><br />In the past, scholars have assumed that the agricultural infrastructure of ancient society was often ruined by attack, as, for example, Athens was relegated to poverty in the aftermath of the Persian and later Peloponnesian invasions. Hanson's study shows, however, that in reality attacks on agriculture rarely resulted in famines or permanent agrarian depression. Trees and vines are hard to destroy, and grainfields are only briefly vulnerable to torching. In addition, ancient armies were rather inefficient systematic ravagers and instead used other tactics, such as occupying their enemies' farms to incite infantry battle. <i>Warfare and Agriculture in Classical Greece</i> suggests that for all ancient societies, rural depression and desolation came about from more subtle phenomena—taxes, changes in political and social structure, and new cultural values—rather than from destructive warfare.

18 L'arte occidentale della guerra

Author : Victor Davis Hanson
Genre :  Ancient  Books  History  Military 
Price :  $10.99
Release Date :  2017-06-27
Description :  Si narra che, quando gli fu suggerito di attaccare i persiani di notte per coglierli impreparati, Alessandro Magno rispose sdegnato: «La strada che indichi è quella dei banditi e dei ladri, il cui unico fine è l’inganno. Preferisco rammaricarmi della sorte avversa anziché provar vergogna per la mia vittoria». Il grande condottiero macedone dimostrava così di aver interiorizzato la cultura greca anche nell’ethos disperato e fiero della battaglia campale. Perché l’arte occidentale della guerra, spiega Victor Davis Hanson in questo saggio ormai classico, si fonda sulla ricerca dello scontro diretto di fanteria, terribile e risolutivo. Un’invenzione greca, tramandata dall’epica di Omero e dalle storie di Tucidide e Senofonte. La battaglia campale non era infatti una pratica comune, nelle guerre antiche, spesso più simili a una guerriglia episodica e selvaggia. Proprio per evitare gli assalti e la devastazione di campi e vigneti, i Greci costruirono una diversa idea di guerra, che si legava a doppio filo con l’essenza stessa della libertà e della democrazia: ogni uomo libero era disposto a correre il rischio di morire in poche ore nel cozzo brutale di lance e scudi, anziché lasciare le proprie terre e i propri cari in ostaggio delle sortite, delle razzie e degli incendi. È impossibile, allora, ragionare di questa idea di guerra senza calarsi nei panni del soldato semplice, dell’oplite schierato nella falange sul far della battaglia. Hanson non si limita infatti ad analizzare la struttura sociale delle città-stato, a ricostruire le tattiche o descrivere nel dettaglio le pesanti armi e gli equipaggiamenti. Riesce invece a disciogliere la storia nel racconto, facendoci rivivere in prima persona quel momento: respiriamo l’eccitazione e la paura, la solidarietà tra compagni di linea e la ferocia del corpo a corpo, ma anche i suoni, gli odori, la fatica… Tutta la dimensione umana dello scontro, tutto il peso di quell’ethos e di quel sacrificio. L’arte occidentale della guerra sopravviverà ai Greci e ad Alessandro Magno, perseguitando come un mito e un fantasma tutta la storia militare occidentale, dalle crociate a Napoleone, dal secondo conflitto mondiale fino alla disfatta americana del Vietnam, quando una nuova e diversa guerriglia segnerà la crisi e forse la fine di quel modello, l’illusione di una guerra nobile, di una vittoria pulita e priva di vergogna. «Un piccolo capolavoro di sapienza e stile.» ― The Economist «Un libro travolgente.» ― Christopher Hitchens «La Guerra di tipo occidentale, che i greci concepivano come una prova del fuoco, ha portato i loro discendenti nell’abisso dell’olocausto. La meditazione brillante e commovente di Victor Davis Hanson può contribuire, speriamo, ad allontanarci da quella voragine.» ― John Keegan



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