> Skip to content
  • Published: 27 June 2024
  • ISBN: 9780241567623
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 400
Categories:

Why War?




A study of what leads humans to war, from one of our great military historians

There can be few more important but also more contentious issues than attempting to understand the human propensity for conflict. Our history is inextricably tangled in wave after wave of inter-human fighting from as far back as we have records.

How can we make sense of what Einstein called 'the dark places of human will and feeling'? Richard Overy draws on a lifetime's study of conflict to write this challenging, invaluable book. Studying every facet of war from biology to belief, psychology to security, Overy allows readers to understand the many contradictory or self-reinforcing ways in which warfare can suddenly appear a legitimate option.

Repeatedly humans have foresworn war, have understood its appalling risks and have wished to create more pacific, productive societies. And yet almost inevitably circumstances emerge under which war once more seems inevitable or even desirable.

  • Published: 27 June 2024
  • ISBN: 9780241567623
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 400
Categories:

About the author

Richard Overy

Richard Overy is Professor in History at the University of Exeter. Formerly Professor of Modern History at King's College, London, his books include William Morris, Viscount Nuffield The Air War, 1939-1945 Dictators, The Dictators: Hitler's Germany, Stalin's Russia, The Nazi Economic Recovery, 1932-1938, Goering: The Iron Man All Our Working Lives (with Peter Pagnamenta), The Origins Of The Second World War, The Road To War (with Andrew Wheatcroft), War And Economy In The Third Reich, The Inter-War Crisis, 1919-1939, Russia's War: A History of the Soviet Effort: 1941-1945, and The Battle: Summer 1940. He is a fellow of the British Academy and winner of the Wolfson History Prize in 2005.

Also by Richard Overy

See all

Praise for Why War?

PRAISE FOR BLOOD AND RUINS: 'Majestic and original ... Overy has written many fine books, but Blood and Ruins is his masterpiece. It puts all previous single-volume works of the conflict in the shade.

Saul David, The Times

Monumental... [A] vast and detailed study that is surely the finest single-volume history of World War Two.

Wall Street Journal

This is a magnificent book that reflects the deep scholarship and humane judgment of a magisterial historian.

The Economist