The First Total War: Napoleon's Europe and the Birth of Modern Warfare

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Bloomsbury, 2008 - 420 pages
"The twentieth century is usually seen as "the century of total war." But as the historian David Bell argues in this work, the phenomenon actually began much earlier, in the era of muskets, cannons, and sailing ships - in the age of Napoleon. It was during this time, Bell argues, that our modern attitudes toward war were born. Bell exposes the surprising parallels between Napoleon's day and our own - including the way that ambitious "wars of liberation," such as the one in Iraq, can degenerate into gruesome guerilla conflict."--BOOK JACKET.

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The first total war: Napoleon's Europe and the birth of warfare as we know it

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Napoleon is widely credited with changing both the perception and the waging of war. Bell (history, Johns Hopkins Univ.;The Cult of the Nation in France ) makes a convincing case that this ... Read full review

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About the author (2008)

David A. Bell teaches French history at Johns Hopkins University and is the author of Lawyers and Citizens, which won the Pinkney Prize of the Society for French Historical Studies, and the highly acclaimed The Cult of the Nation in France. He has contributed to many American and European publications including the New York Times, Time, the Times Literary Supplement and the London Review of Books. He lives in Baltimore with his wife and two children.

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