This illuminating work examines the social, cultural, political, and economic dimensions of the Communist takeover of China. Instead of dwelling on elite politics and policy-making processes, Dilemmas of Victory seeks to understand how the 1949-1953 period was experienced by various groups, including industrialists, filmmakers, ethnic minorities, educators, rural midwives, philanthropists, stand-up comics, and scientists.
A stellar group of authors that includes Frederic Wakeman, Elizabeth Perry, Sherman Cochran, Perry Link, Joseph Esherick, and Chen Jian shows that the Communists sometimes achieved a remarkably smooth takeover, yet at other times appeared shockingly incompetent. Shanghai and Beijing experienced it in ways that differed dramatically from Xinjiang, Tibet, and Dalian. Out of necessity, the new regime often showed restraint and flexibility, courting the influential and educated. Furthermore, many policies of the old Nationalist regime were quietly embraced by the new Communist rulers.
Based on previously unseen archival documents as well as oral histories, these lively, readable essays provide the fullest picture to date of the early years of the People's Republic, which were far more pluralistic, diverse, and hopeful than the Maoist decades that followed.
The Ethiopian popular revolution of 1974 ended a monarchy that claimed descent from King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, and brought to power a military government that created one of the largest and best-equipped armies in Africa. In his panoramic study of the Ethiopian army, Fantahun Ayele draws upon his unprecedented access to Ethiopian Ministry of Defense archives to study the institution that was able to repel the Somali invasion of 1977 and suppress internal uprisings, but collapsed in 1991 under the combined onslaught of armed insurgencies in Eritrea and Tigray. Besides military operations, The Ethiopian Army discusses tactical areas such as training, equipment, intelligence, and logistics, as well as grand strategic choices such as ending the 1953 Ethio-American Mutual Defense Agreement and signing a treaty of military assistance with the Soviet Union. The result sheds considerable light on the military developments that have shaped Ethiopia and the Horn in the twentieth century.
How do people decide which country came out ahead in a war or a crisis? Why, for instance, was the Mayaguez Incident in May 1975--where 41 U.S. soldiers were killed and dozens more wounded in a botched hostage rescue mission--perceived as a triumph and the 1992-94 U.S. humanitarian intervention in Somalia, which saved thousands of lives, viewed as a disaster? In Failing to Win, Dominic Johnson and Dominic Tierney dissect the psychological factors that predispose leaders, media, and the public to perceive outcomes as victories or defeats--often creating wide gaps between perceptions and reality.
To make their case, Johnson and Tierney employ two frameworks: "Scorekeeping," which focuses on actual material gains and losses; and "Match-fixing," where evaluations become skewed by mindsets, symbolic events, and media and elite spin. In case studies ranging from the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis and the current War on Terror, the authors show that much of what we accept about international politics and world history is not what it seems--and why, in a time when citizens offer or withdraw support based on an imagined view of the outcome rather than the result on the ground, perceptions of success or failure can shape the results of wars, the fate of leaders, and the "lessons" we draw from history.
A lifelong sports fanatic plumbs the depths of the fan mindset, tracking the mania from the gridiron to the national political stage and beyond.
The Pass. The Curse. The Double Doink. A sports fan’s life is not just defined by intense moments on a field, it’s scarred by them. For a real fan, winning isn’t everything—losing is. The true fans, it’s said, are those who have suffered the most, enduring lives defined by irrational obsession, fervid hopes, and equally gut-wrenching misery. And as Paul Campos shows, those deep feelings are windows not just onto an individual fan’s psychology but onto some of our shared concepts of community, identity, and belonging—not all of which are admirable. In A Fan’s Life, he seeks not to exalt a particular team but to explore fandom’s thorniest depths, excavating the deeper meanings of the fan’s inherently unhappy life.
A Fan’s Life dives deep into the experience of being an ardent fan in a world defined more and more by the rhetoric of “winners” and “losers.” In a series of tightly argued chapters that suture together memoir and social critique, Campos chronicles his lifelong passion for University of Michigan football while meditating on fandom in the wake of the unprecedented year of 2020—when, for a time, a global pandemic took away professional and collegiate sports entirely. Fandom isn’t just leisure, he shows; it’s part of who we are, and part of even our politics, which in the age of Donald Trump have become increasingly tribal and bloody. Campos points toward where we might be heading, as our various partisan affiliations—fandoms with a grimly national significance—become all the more intense and bitterly self-defining. As he shows, we’re all fans of something, and making sense of fandom itself might offer a way to wrap our heads around our increasingly divided reality, on and off the field.
This fast-paced and compelling read closes a significant gap in the historiography of the late Cold War U.S. Army and is crucial for understanding the current situation in the Middle East.
From the author's introduction:
“My purpose is a narrative history of the 1st Infantry Division from 1970 through the Operation Desert Storm celebration held 4th of July 1991. This story is an account of the revolutionary changes in the late Cold War. The Army that overran Saddam Hussein’s Legions in four days was the product of important changes stimulated both by social changes and institutional reform. The 1st Infantry Division reflected benefits of those changes, despite its low priority for troops and material. The Division was not an elite formation, but rather excelled in the context of the Army as an institution.”
This book begins with a preface by Gordon R. Sullivan, General, USA, Retired. In twelve chapters, author Gregory Fontenot explains the history of the 1st infantry Division from 1970 to 1991. In doing so, his fast-paced narrative includes elements to expand the knowledge of non-military readers. These elements include a glossary, a key to abbreviations, maps, nearly two dozen photographs, and thorough bibliography.
The First infantry Division and the U.S. Army Transformed: Road to Victory in Desert Storm is published with support from the First Division Museum at Cantigny.
How Grant secured a Tennessee victory and a promotion
Union soldiers in the Army of the Cumberland, who were trapped and facing starvation or surrender in the fall of 1863, saw the arrival of Major General Ulysses S. Grant in Tennessee as an impetus to reverse the tides of war. David A. Powell’s sophisticated strategic and operational analysis of Grant’s command decisions and actions shows how his determined leadership relieved the siege and shattered the enemy, resulting in the creation of a new strategic base of Union operations and Grant’s elevation to commander of all the Federal armies the following year.
Powell’s detailed exploration of the Union Army of the Cumberland’s six-week-long campaign for Chattanooga is complemented by his careful attention to the personal issues Grant faced at the time and his relationships with his superiors and subordinates. Though unfamiliar with the tactical situation, the army, and its officers, Grant delivered another resounding victory. His success, explains Powell, was due to his tactical flexibility, communication with his superiors, perseverance despite setbacks, and dogged determination to win the campaign. Through attention to postwar accounts, Powell reconciles the differences between what happened and the participants’ memories of the events. He focuses throughout on Grant’s controversial decisions, showing how they were made and their impact on the campaign. As Powell shows, Grant’s choices demonstrate how he managed to be a thoughtful, deliberate commander despite the fog of war.
This epic tells the story of a Polish Jewish family struggling against nearly insurmountable odds. In The Jewish War, the family of a young Jewish boy hides throughout the countryside until the father is murdered. To escape, the mother and boy use forged papers and adopt a false life as the Catholic family of an officer captured by the Germans. The Victory picks up the story as the Red Army advances and the boy fights to reclaim his Jewishness amidst the horrors of the past and the choices of an agonizing present.
Of the hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian women were sentenced to the Gulag in the 1940s and 1950s, only half survived. In Survival as Victory, Oksana Kis has produced the first anthropological study of daily life in the Soviet forced labor camps as experienced by Ukrainian women prisoners.
Based on the written memoirs, autobiographies, and oral histories of over 150 survivors, this book fills a lacuna in the scholarship regarding Ukrainian experience. Kis details the women’s resistance to the brutality of camp conditions not only through the preservation of customs and traditions from everyday home life, but also through the frequent elision of regional and confessional differences. Following the groundbreaking work of Anne Applebaum’s Gulag: A History (2003), this book is a must-read for anyone interested in gendered strategies of survival, accommodation, and resistance to the dehumanizing effects of the Gulag.
Never has the power of scientific research to solve existing problems and uncover new ones been more evident than it is today. Yet there exists widespread ignorance about the larger contexts within which scientific research is carried out. For example, the point of view some scientists adopt in their work or in their social commitments may become clearer if considered in light of the opposing views held by other scientists.
This is a theme Gerald Holton addresses in his new collection. Whether considering conflicts between Heisenberg and Einstein, Bohr and Einstein, or P. W. Bridgman and B. F. Skinner; tracing I. I. Rabi's shift of attention from superb science to education and scientific statesmanship; or examining the emergence, in the last few decades, of the need to connect scientific research to societal needs--in each case, Holton demonstrates a masterly understanding of modern science and how it influences our world.
The author shows why, at any given time--even in the mature phase of science--there exists no single "paradigm," but rather a spectrum of competing perspectives; and why so much good science has been based, from antiquity to today, on a relatively small number of presuppositions.
Beginning with the Cleveland Indians’ hard luck during World War II, this thrilling history follows the team through its historic role in racial integration and its legendary postwar comeback. Rich with player photographs and stories, this book is sure to excite American history buffs and baseball fans alike.
In early 1942, baseball team owners across the country scrambled to assemble makeshift rosters from the remaining ballplayers who had not left the sport for the armed forces. The Cleveland Indians suffered a tremendous loss when star pitcher Bob Feller became the first Major Leaguer to enlist, taking his twenty-plus wins per year with him. To make matters worse, the Indians’ new player-manager, Lou Boudreau, had no coaching or managing experience. The resulting team was mediocre, and players struggled to keep up morale.
Feller’s return in late 1945 sparked a spectacular comeback. A year later Bill Veeck bought the franchise and, over the next two years, signed the first American League players to break the color barrier: Larry Doby and Satchel Paige. The 1948 season ended with the Indians and Boston Red Sox tied, resulting in the American League’s first playoff game. Thanks in part to rookie Gene Bearden’s outstanding pitching, the Indians went on to beat the National League’s Boston Braves for their second World Series title.
With so much at stake and so much already lost, why did World War I end with a whimper-an arrangement between two weary opponents to suspend hostilities? After more than four years of desperate fighting, with victories sometimes measured in feet and inches, why did the Allies reject the option of advancing into Germany in 1918 and taking Berlin? Most histories of the Great War focus on the avoidability of its beginning. This book brings a laser-like focus to its ominous end-the Allies' incomplete victory, and the tragic ramifications for world peace just two decades later.
In the most comprehensive account to date of the conflict's endgame, David Stevenson approaches the events of 1918 from a truly international perspective, examining the positions and perspectives of combatants on both sides, as well as the impact of the Russian Revolution. Stevenson pays close attention to America's effort in its first twentieth-century war, including its naval and military contribution, army recruitment, industrial mobilization, and home-front politics. Alongside military and political developments, he adds new information about the crucial role of economics and logistics.
The Allies' eventual success, Stevenson shows, was due to new organizational methods of managing men and materiel and to increased combat effectiveness resulting partly from technological innovation. These factors, combined with Germany's disastrous military offensive in spring 1918, ensured an Allied victory-but not a conclusive German defeat.