The Face of Battle

By John Keegan
Read by Simon Vance

11.78 Hours 11/01/2001 unabridged
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In this major and wholly original contribution to military history, John Keegan reverses the usual convention of writing about war in terms of generals and nations in conflict, which tends to leave the common soldier as cipher. Instead, he focuses on what a set battle is like for the man in the thick of it—his fears, his wounds and their treatment, the mechanics of being taken prisoner, the nature of leadership at the most junior level, the role of compulsion in getting men to stand their ground, the intrusions of cruelty and compassion, the din and blood. Set battles, with their unities of time and place, may be a thing of the past, but this anatomy of what they were like for the men who fought them is an unforgettable mirror held up to human nature.

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Summary

Summary

In this major and wholly original contribution to military history, John Keegan reverses the usual convention of writing about war in terms of generals and nations in conflict, which tends to leave the common soldier as cipher. Instead, he focuses on what a set battle is like for the man in the thick of it—his fears, his wounds and their treatment, the mechanics of being taken prisoner, the nature of leadership at the most junior level, the role of compulsion in getting men to stand their ground, the intrusions of cruelty and compassion, the din and blood.

Set battles, with their unities of time and place, may be a thing of the past, but this anatomy of what they were like for the men who fought them is an unforgettable mirror held up to human nature.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“The most brilliant evocation of military experience in our time.” C. P. Snow, New York Times bestselling author
“A totally original and brilliant book.” New York Review of Books
“In this book, which is so creative, so original, one learns as much about the nature of man as of battle.” New York Times Book Review
“This without any doubt is one of the half-dozen best books on warfare to appear in the English language since the end of the Second World War.” Sunday Times (London)
“This is no ordinary book of military history. In fact, it’s considered a classic…[Simon Vance’s] reading matches the grace, intelligence, and pathos of Keegan’s prose…A flawless reading.” AudioFile

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: John Keegan

John Keegan is the defense editor of the Daily Telegraph (London) and Britain’s foremost military historian. He is the author of many bestselling books, including The First World War, Intelligence in War, and The Battle for History. He lives in Wiltshire, England.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/History
Runtime: 11.78
Audience: Adult
Language: English