Cultures of War

Cultures of War

Pearl Harbor / Hiroshima / 9-11 / Iraq

By John W. Dower

W. W. Norton & Company, Paperback, 9780393340686, 640pp.

Publication Date: September 2011

Turning to an even larger canvas, Dower now examines the cultures of war revealed by four powerful events Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, 9-11, and the invasion of Iraq in the name of a war on terror. The list of issues examined and themes explored is wide-ranging: failures of intelligence and imagination, wars of choice and strategic imbecilities, faith-based secular thinking as well as more overtly holy wars, the targeting of noncombatants, and the almost irresistible logic and allure of mass destruction. Dower's new work also sets the U.S. occupations of Japan and Iraq side by side in strikingly original ways One of the most important books of this decade, Cultures of War offers comparative insights into individual and institutional behavior and pathologies that transcend cultures in the more traditional sense, and that ultimately go beyond war-making alone.

About the Author
John W. Dower is the author of Embracing Defeat, winner of the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize; War without Mercy, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award; and Cultures of War. He is professor emeritus of history at MIT. In addition to authoring many books and articles about Japan and the United States in war and peace, he is a founder and codirector of the online "Visualizing Cultures" project established at MIT in 2002 and dedicated to the presentation of image-driven scholarship on East Asia in the modern world. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.