The Art of War, compiled by Sun Tzu in the 6th century B.C., is the world's oldest surviving military treatise. Long revered as the definitive guide to strategy and tactics on the battlefield, its timeless wisdom is now being applied in the boardroom, on the playing field, and everywhere challenges must be faced. Required reading for U.S. Marine commandants, The Art of War has inspired generals from Douglas MacArthur to Norman Schwazkopf. But it has also been used by top executives, sports coaches, political strategists, lawyers, salesmen, pick-up artists, and Survivor contestants. Whatever your arena of battle, The Art of War will help you overcome overcome every obstacle along the path to success.
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The Art of War is the Swiss army knife of military theory--pop out a different tool for any situation. Folded into this small package are compact views on resourcefulness, momentum, cunning, the profit motive, flexibility, integrity, secrecy, speed, positioning, surprise, deception, manipulation, responsibility, and practicality. Thomas Cleary's translation keeps the package tight, with crisp language and short sections. Commentaries from the Chinese tradition trail Sun-tzu's words, elaborating and picking up on puzzling lines. Take the solitary passage: "Do not eat food for their soldiers." Elsewhere, Sun-tzu has told us to plunder the enemy's stores, but now we're not supposed to eat the food? The Tang dynasty commentator Du Mu solves the puzzle nicely, "If the enemy suddenly abandons their food supplies, they should be tested first before eating, lest they be poisoned." Most passages, however, are the pinnacle of succinct clarity: "Lure them in with the prospect of gain, take them by confusion" or "Invincibility is in oneself, vulnerability is in the opponent." Sun-tzu's maxims are widely applicable beyond the military because they speak directly to the exigencies of survival. Your new tools will serve you well, but don't flaunt them. Remember Sun-tzu's advice: "Though effective, appear to be ineffective." --Brian BruyaFrom the Publisher:
Here is a seminal work on the philosophy of successful leadership that is as applicable to contemporary business as it is to war. James Clavell has taken a 1910 translation and clarified it for the contemporary reader.
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