How true is John Keegan's argument that war is a reflection of the societies and cultures that wage it? This topic aims to familiarize students with the history of warfare and society and the effects of each upon each other from the Seven Years War until the contemporary period. A selection of wars of differing character and context during this period will be covered, such as the Napoleonic Wars, The Crimean War, the Boer War, World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War. The course will treat the wars covered not only in their political and military contexts, but also in their wider social, cultural and technological contexts. Themes such as peace/anti-war movements, nuclear deterrent and the changing role of non-combatants will also be explored. The subject engages with a range of rich textual and visual sources, including two feature films and two documentaries.
This topic aims to: