Leadership in War: Essential Lessons from Those Who Made History

Leadership in War: Essential Lessons from Those Who Made History

by Andrew Roberts


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A comparison of nine leaders who led their nations through the greatest wars the world has ever seen and whose unique strengths—and weaknesses—shaped the course of human history, from the bestselling, award-winning author of Churchill and Napoleon

“Has the enjoyable feel of a lively dinner table conversation with an opinionated guest.” —The New York Times Book Review

Taking us from the French Revolution to the Cold War, Andrew Roberts presents a bracingly honest and deeply insightful look at nine major figures in modern history: Napoleon Bonaparte, Horatio Nelson, Winston Churchill, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, George C. Marshall, Charles de Gaulle, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and Margaret Thatcher.

Each of these leaders fundamentally shaped the outcome of the war in which their nation was embroiled. Is war leadership unique, or did these leaders have something in common, traits and techniques that transcend time and place and can be applied to the essential nature of conflict?

Meticulously researched and compellingly written, Leadership in War presents readers with fresh, complex portraits of leaders who approached war with different tactics and weapons, but with the common goal of success in the face of battle. Both inspiring and cautionary, these portraits offer important lessons on leadership in times of struggle, unease, and discord. With his trademark verve and incisive observation, Roberts reveals the qualities that doom even the most promising leaders to failure, as well as the traits that lead to victory.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780525522409
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/27/2020
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 129,316
Product dimensions: 7.90(w) x 5.20(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Andrew Roberts is the bestselling author of Churchill: Walking with Destiny, winner of the the Council on Foreign Relations Arthur Ross Book Award; The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War; Masters and Commanders: How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941-1945; Waterloo: Napoleon's Last Gamble; and Napoleon: A Life, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for biography. He has won many other prizes, including the Wolfson History Prize and the British Army Military Book of the Year. He is the Roger and Martha Mertz Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, a Lehrman Institute Distinguished Fellow at the New-York Historical Society, and a visiting professor in the Department of War Studies at King's College London.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Leadership Conundrum xi

Chapter 1 Napoleon Bonaparte 1

Chapter 2 Horatio Nelson 27

Chapter 3 Winston Churchill 51

Chapter 4 Adolf Hitler 67

Chapter 5 Joseph Stalin 93

Chapter 6 George C. Marshall 119

Chapter 7 Charles De Gaulle 139

Chapter 8 Dwight D. Eisenhower 157

Chapter 9 Margaret Thatcher 179

Conclusion The Leadership Paradigm 199

Acknowledgments 223

Notes 225

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