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Five Days in August (07 Edition)

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Five Days in August (07 Edition) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Please note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.

Publisher Comments:

Most Americans believe that the Second World War ended because the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan forced it to surrender. Five Days in August boldly presents a different interpretation: that the military did not clearly understand the atomic bomb's revolutionary strategic potential, that the Allies were almost as stunned by the surrender as the Japanese were by the attack, and that not only had experts planned and fully anticipated the need for a third bomb, they were skeptical about whether the atomic bomb would work at all. With these ideas, Michael Gordin reorients the historical and contemporary conversation about the A-bomb and World War II.

Gordin posits that although the bomb clearly brought with it a new level of destructive power, strategically it was regarded by decision-makers simply as a new conventional weapon, a bigger firebomb. To lend greater understanding to the thinking behind its deployment, Gordin takes the reader to the island of Tinian, near Guam, the home base for the bombing campaign, and the location from which the anticipated third atomic bomb was to be delivered. He also details how Americans generated a new story about the origins of the bomb after surrender: that the United States knew in advance that the bomb would end the war and that its destructive power was so awesome no one could resist it.

Five Days in August explores these and countless other legacies of the atomic bomb in a glaring new light. Daring and iconoclastic, it will result in far-reaching discussions about the significance of the A-bomb, about World War II, and about the moral issues they have spawned.

Review:

"When the great Danish physicist Niels Bohr — the father of quantum physics — arrived in Los Alamos on Dec. 30, 1943, the first question he asked J. Robert Oppenheimer was 'Is it really big enough?' Bohr had no doubt that Oppenheimer's 'gadget' would work; he only wanted to know if the atomic bomb was destructive enough, truly special enough, to prevent all future wars.

This is the... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Synopsis:

"Michael Gordin's Five Days in August is a gripping reconsideration of how the atomic bomb figured in the ending of World War II. Gordin recounts how the bomb came to be viewed soon after the unexpectedly swift surrender as a special, revolutionary weapon, and he ruminates upon the implications of that shift for weapons policy in the postwar world. In all, a remarkable, thought-provoking book."--Daniel Kevles, author of The Physicists: The History of a Scientific Community in Modern America

"With stunning details grounded in a myriad of sources, Gordin captures the ethos of the first nuclear war--how it seemed back in the heat of war, before history revised its estimation of the bomb and made the twin bombings of August 1945 into a unique and self-evidently decisive event. No one can fully understand the end of World War II without taking on board Gordin's study."--Peter Galison, author of Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Map

"Bold and provocative. No one has presented these arguments so coherently, so forcefully, and so intelligently with such gripping, dynamic style."--Tsuyoshi Hasegawa, author of Racing the Enemy: Stalin, Truman, and the Surrender of Japan

"Powerful. Five Days in August vigorously proposes new ways of thinking about the World War II atomic bombings, their meanings, and their multiple legacies. It is a book that will provoke controversy and, ideally, help encourage new lines of research, argument, and emphasis. It has a deep critical knowledge and a subtle intelligence. The arguments are arresting and important."--Barton Bernstein, Stanford University

Synopsis:

Most Americans believe that the Second World War ended because the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan forced it to surrender. Five Days in August boldly presents a different interpretation: that the military did not clearly understand the atomic bomb's revolutionary strategic potential, that the Allies were almost as stunned by the surrender as the Japanese were by the attack, and that not only had experts planned and fully anticipated the need for a third bomb, they were skeptical about whether the atomic bomb would work at all. With these ideas, Michael Gordin reorients the historical and contemporary conversation about the A-bomb and World War II.

Gordin posits that although the bomb clearly brought with it a new level of destructive power, strategically it was regarded by decision-makers simply as a new conventional weapon, a bigger firebomb. To lend greater understanding to the thinking behind its deployment, Gordin takes the reader to the island of Tinian, near Guam, the home base for the bombing campaign, and the location from which the anticipated third atomic bomb was to be delivered. He also details how Americans generated a new story about the origins of the bomb after surrender: that the United States knew in advance that the bomb would end the war and that its destructive power was so awesome no one could resist it.

Five Days in August explores these and countless other legacies of the atomic bomb in a glaring new light. Daring and iconoclastic, it will result in far-reaching discussions about the significance of the A-bomb, about World War II, and about the moral issues they have spawned.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations xi

Acknowledgments xiii

Chronology xv

Chapter 1: Endings 5

Chapter 2: Shock 16

Chapter 3: Special 39

Chapter 4: Miracle 59

Chapter 5: Papacy 85

Chapter 6: Revolution 107

Chapter 7: Beginnings 124

Coda: On the Scholarly Literature 141

Abbreviations Used in Notes 145

Notes 147

Index 195

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691128184
Author:
Gordin, Michael D.
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton
Subject:
Military Science
Subject:
Military - World War II
Subject:
World war, 1939-1945
Subject:
History
Subject:
Political Science and International Relations
Subject:
World History/Comparative History
Subject:
History of Science and Medicine, Philosophy of Science
Subject:
American history
Subject:
World War, 1939-1945 -- Japan.
Subject:
Hiroshima-shi (Japan) History.
Subject:
Military-World War II General
Copyright:
Publication Date:
February 2007
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
224
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Military » Weapons » General
History and Social Science » Military » World War II » General
History and Social Science » Military » World War II » Pacific
Reference » Science Reference » Technology
Young Adult » General

Five Days in August (07 Edition) Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$13.00 In Stock
Product details 224 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691128184 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "Michael Gordin's Five Days in August is a gripping reconsideration of how the atomic bomb figured in the ending of World War II. Gordin recounts how the bomb came to be viewed soon after the unexpectedly swift surrender as a special, revolutionary weapon, and he ruminates upon the implications of that shift for weapons policy in the postwar world. In all, a remarkable, thought-provoking book."--Daniel Kevles, author of The Physicists: The History of a Scientific Community in Modern America

"With stunning details grounded in a myriad of sources, Gordin captures the ethos of the first nuclear war--how it seemed back in the heat of war, before history revised its estimation of the bomb and made the twin bombings of August 1945 into a unique and self-evidently decisive event. No one can fully understand the end of World War II without taking on board Gordin's study."--Peter Galison, author of Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Map

"Bold and provocative. No one has presented these arguments so coherently, so forcefully, and so intelligently with such gripping, dynamic style."--Tsuyoshi Hasegawa, author of Racing the Enemy: Stalin, Truman, and the Surrender of Japan

"Powerful. Five Days in August vigorously proposes new ways of thinking about the World War II atomic bombings, their meanings, and their multiple legacies. It is a book that will provoke controversy and, ideally, help encourage new lines of research, argument, and emphasis. It has a deep critical knowledge and a subtle intelligence. The arguments are arresting and important."--Barton Bernstein, Stanford University

"Synopsis" by , Most Americans believe that the Second World War ended because the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan forced it to surrender. Five Days in August boldly presents a different interpretation: that the military did not clearly understand the atomic bomb's revolutionary strategic potential, that the Allies were almost as stunned by the surrender as the Japanese were by the attack, and that not only had experts planned and fully anticipated the need for a third bomb, they were skeptical about whether the atomic bomb would work at all. With these ideas, Michael Gordin reorients the historical and contemporary conversation about the A-bomb and World War II.

Gordin posits that although the bomb clearly brought with it a new level of destructive power, strategically it was regarded by decision-makers simply as a new conventional weapon, a bigger firebomb. To lend greater understanding to the thinking behind its deployment, Gordin takes the reader to the island of Tinian, near Guam, the home base for the bombing campaign, and the location from which the anticipated third atomic bomb was to be delivered. He also details how Americans generated a new story about the origins of the bomb after surrender: that the United States knew in advance that the bomb would end the war and that its destructive power was so awesome no one could resist it.

Five Days in August explores these and countless other legacies of the atomic bomb in a glaring new light. Daring and iconoclastic, it will result in far-reaching discussions about the significance of the A-bomb, about World War II, and about the moral issues they have spawned.

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