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The Psychology of War: Comprehending Its Mystique and Its Madness

Leshan, Lawrence

48 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1879360209 / ISBN 13: 9781879360204
Published by Noble Press, Chicago, 1992
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From Veronica's Books (GIg Harbor, WA, U.S.A.)

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Jacket in protective mylar. 163pp. Bookseller Inventory # 012645

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Psychology of War: Comprehending Its ...

Publisher: Noble Press, Chicago

Publication Date: 1992

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

LeShan tells how perceptions of war are managed by "mythicizing" rulers and propagandists. Using last year's Persian Gulf War as a touchstone, he illustrates how, in order to alter our perceptions of war and warfare, we have to adjust our perception of its "reality." "How good it would be if every legislator and cabinet member read and took to heart the practical suggestions . . . LeShan has for making peace planning as potent as war planning."--Hugh Downs.

From the Publisher:

THE PSYCHOLOGY OF WAR is a stunning anatomy of a problem that the greatest thinkers have failed to solve, the question why humans so universally and frequently fight wars. Our wars have become more lethal, yet our affinity for war hasn’t changed.

Unlike preceding attempts to explain the phenomenon psychologically, LeShan doesn’t examine the motives that might lead to war, but the way in which our minds process information: “When we go to war, our perception of reality—of what we are and what is happening in the world around us—is quite different from that which we commonly use in peacetime.”

This “mythic” mode of thinking, as the author calls it, leads us to assumptions that we would not make during peacetime, such as: We are good, the other side is evil; we will “triumph over evil” if we win; our future will be safe and prosperous, etc. In the mythic mode, we develop a readiness to engage in war at all cost—even if the outcome is highly doubtful or a non-aggressive solution possible.

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