Introduction to Strategic Studies/Policy by Other Means

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part of the School of Strategic Studies
Class two of thirty in the Course: Introduction to Strategic Studies

"War! Huh-yeah
What is it good for?"

War, Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong
Motown musicians

Summary[edit]

The objective of this class is to identify the established reasons nations go to war and the refutations of these reasons. We will seek to make some sense out of the utility (or inutility) of warfare as defined so elegantly by Carl von Clausewitz as "policy by other means."

Introduction[edit]

This will introduce you to the issue and the questions to be posed in the class.

Readings[edit]

This will delineate the readings that should be done prior to undertaking the exercises in this class.

  • Blainey, Geoffrey (1988), The Causes of War (New York: The Free Press)
  • Clausewitz, Carl von (Edited and Translated by Michael Howard and Peter Paret)(1976), On War . Princeton: Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-69101854-5. Read chapters 1 & 2.
  • Smith, General Sir Rupert (2005), The Utility of Force. The Art of War in the Modern World (London: Allen Lane-Penguin)
  • Waltz, Kenneth (1959, 2001), Man, the State and War (New York: Columbia)

Lecture[edit]

This is the text that will fill you in on how the readings relate to the topic, and what kinds of things you should take into account when looking into the reasons behind a given war. There is invariably more than one cause, and many more ways than one to look at the origins of a war. This lecture will propose a series of questions or issues to weigh when assessing the causes of a war.

Project[edit]

This project is a simple activity of looking at an existing page or wikipedia/books/media entry on a war. When you are ready, take the plunge!

Denouement[edit]

This will detail what has been learned and encourage you to add feedback to this page from your own experiences from the project.