Synopses & Reviews
Military service can shatter or give meaning to lives–it is rarely a neutral encounter—and it has resulted in a rich outpouring of personal testimony from the men and women who have literally placed their lives on the line. A real love letter to our military [that] will prove enlightening, even galvanizing” (Dissent
), A Peoples History of the U.S. Military
tells the captivating narratives of common soldiers, sampled from over three centuries of letters, diaries, and memoirs as well as audio recordings, films, and blogs. The often dramatic, sometimes very raw, and always richly textured first–person accounts collected in this book cover a wide range of perspectives, from ardent patriots to disillusioned cynics, barely literate farm boys to urbane college graduates, scions of founding families to recent immigrants, and women disguising themselves as men in order to serve their country to African Americans fighting for their freedom through military service.
Praised as compact and complete” (Booklist), an excellent educational tool” (Publishers Weekly), and a useful, unsettling, bottom–up history of Americas wars that emphasizes the soldiers mistreatment, suffering, and injustice” (Kirkus Reviews), A Peoples History of the U.S. Military has already become a major new touchstone for our understanding of American military service.
A Choice magazine Outstanding Academic Title selection
"This vivid and insightful volume provides an essential corrective, offering readers U.S. military history from the bottom up."
Andrew J. Bacevich, author of Washington Rules, The New American Militarism, The Limits of Power, and American Empire
"In this excellent new book, Michael A. Bellesiles shows that wars are about death and destruction, and the ones who ultimately pay the price in carrying them out are the men and women who fight them."
Gian P. Gentile, author of How Effective Is Strategic Bombing?
"[A] muchneeded, oneofakind book."
David Williams, author of A Peoples History of the Civil War
About the Author
Michael A. Bellesiles teaches history at Central Connecticut State University. He is author of numerous books, including 1877 and Arming America. He lives in Connecticut.