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The Art of War

3.94  ·  Rating Details  ·  166,822 Ratings  ·  4,908 Reviews
Conflict is an inevitable part of life, according to this ancient Chinese classic of strategy, but everything necessary to deal with conflict wisely, honorably, victoriously, is already present within us. Compiled more than two thousand years ago by a mysterious warrior-philosopher, The Art of War is still perhaps the most prestigious and influential book of strategy in t ...more
Paperback, 273 pages
Published January 11th 2005 by Shambhala Publications (first published -450)
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Becca It's actually on the US military's recommended reading list for soldiers....
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Petra X
Simply put, Sun Tzu says that it is better not to fight than to be involved in a conflict, but if you are going to have to fight, then you have to do it to win, and these are the various strategies, often brutal, that will get you that result.

Niccolò Machiavelli, in The Prince says if you are in a position of power and seek to maintain it, it is better to be loved and respected, but if you can't achieve that, then at least enforce respect and these are the, often brutal, strategies that will get
Aug 04, 2015 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hey! Look at me stepping outside my comfort zone!


I saw this audiobook in the library, and I thought it looked interesting.
Hell, I've got 4 kids. This could come in handy.
Next year I'll have not one, but two teenage boys. I need to prepare myself to defend my babies home from the invading whores hoards. I figured this book would help me gird my loins (or whatever it is you do) when you head into battle.
Back off, Skanks! You're not getting past the front door!


Still, even teenage boys pale in compa
The wise warrior avoids the battle.

I can't think in a better quote to begin this review.

Sometimes, reading books about war tactics or novels of the genre of war, is confused with glorify wars, destruction, death and all sad things that are results of a war. But, at least, in my case (I can't speak for others) it's not that. I don't glorify war. One of my favorite historical subjects is World War II, but it's not because an insane instinct of glorify war. I just support the concept that any per
May 05, 2007 Sporkurai rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: morons or tacticians
Evidently, it seems, for the last couple thousand years, EVERYONE has been using the same textbook on how to conduct a war. It also seems to be that nobody even knows for sure who wrote the book or when, but everyone uses it anyway. Included in this book are precious reminders that strategy helps you win, retreating helps you not die, if you outnumber the enemy 5 to 1, attacking would probably be a good idea, and also if you're a tiny country surrounded by powerful countries, it might be time to ...more
Tom Marotta
Jul 17, 2007 Tom Marotta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: all
So many little wars must be waged daily. Works on the battlefield and the office.


"When the enemy is relaxed, make them toil. When full, starve them. When settled, make them move."

"In conflict, straightforward actions generally lead to engagement, surprising actions generally lead to victory."

"Thus those skilled in war subdue the enemy's army without battle .... They conquer by strategy."

"Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril. When you are igno
My wife says watching me read The Art of War is like watching Danny DeVito read The Joy of Sex. I'm not sure how to take that.

Bottom line, I'm a lover not a fighter. I started this because I know that many people love this work and say they get a lot out of it. But it became clear to me after quite a few pages that The Art of War really is about fighting a war no matter what other people might interpret it to be. So I'm not interested.

Besides the two things I need to know about fighting I learne
Sep 16, 2008 Colleen rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Imperial Chinese military strategies.
While Sun Tzu is constantly praised for his work on The Art of War, I find it hard to believe that it has inspired anyone. This famous military strategy book has provided people such as Napoleon and the cast of 'Survivor: China' advice on handling the opposing force. However, despite the simple (yet adequate) translation that Lionel Giles provided, The Art of War does nothing more than to reiterate common sense. Sun Tzu asks the audience to not show off their strong points, but to lead the enemy ...more
Araz Goran
Oct 19, 2015 Araz Goran rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

" الكـتاب المـقـدس للـدراسـات العـسكـرية "

خمسة وعشرون قرناً من الزمان ولا يزال كتاب " فن الحرب " من أهم وافضل الكتب الحربية والعسكرية ومازال من ضمن قائمة أهم مائة كتاب في التاريخ..

سن أتزو جعل من الحرب فناً ،خدعة ودهاء.. تعليمات عسكرية صارمة وتكتيكات عبقرية وخطط ماكرة واقعية فذة، تفكير في أدق تفاصيل شؤون الحرب وإغتنام كافة السبل و الفرص المؤدية إلى النصر المؤزر في أي معركة بكيفية واقعية لا تخرج عن نطاق الممكن..

قد لا يهمه عدد الجنود في داخل المعركة ولا قوة العدو ولا نوع الأسلحة ولا التضاريس الت
Bookworm Sean
We all know one person who has an answer for everything. This person is usually annoying and won’t accept that sometimes they’re just wrong; they won’t accept that at some point their logic may fail them and run dry; they’re completely resolute in what they believe and they just won’t budge from it: they simply can’t be proven wrong or at fault. This is how I feel about Sun Tzu. It’s like he interpreted questions and doubts before they were born, and countered them with his own logic based respo ...more
Riku Sayuj

Quick Demo: On Ruining a Classic Text

Kaufman (author more than translator, I feel) boasts: In this work you will learn how people are to be treated and dealt with. The work was written for men in command and leaders of states. It is for the ambitious and strong spirited; do not seek morality lessons here.

Sun Tzu has been translated and interpreted countless times by people with little knowledge of true combat reality on either the physical or mental level.

Most of the available translations and i
Carmo Santos
Eu tentei, juro que tentei! Li na diagonal, andei de frente para trás e vice-versa, acendi velas, emborquei um copo de vinho e nada! Nadinha resultou!
Que me desculpem os aficionados da porradaria, mas eu não tenho vocação nem paciência para apreciar a arte de guerrear.
Sep 16, 2007 Lily rated it it was ok
If you've ever picked up a self-help book where the author is repeatedly stating the obvious, then you've experienced the writing style of this book. The overall concepts could've been summarized in a short essay rather than a book. Its length is a testament to its antiquity, though the author has done a noble job of re-ordering and editing bits of the chapters to provide continuity and to delete repetition.

Oriental philosophy is often ripe with a kind of double-speak and this book is no excepti
Reading Corner
Dec 17, 2015 Reading Corner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed reading this, it was really interesting and insightful. I know I'll definitely be reading this again!
J.L.   Sutton
Jan 17, 2016 J.L. Sutton rated it liked it
Understanding the ground you're standing on (strategically) is a paramount concern of Sun Tzu's treatise on The Art of War. This ground (and the moves and countermoves you can make from it) can be interpreted not just as advice on combat, but also on business and relationships. This is book I've known about for a long time. So I'm glad I got to read it, but I'm not sure it inspired me to action or to think differently about the world. Maybe that will come later.
Diamond Cowboy
Jan 06, 2016 Diamond Cowboy rated it really liked it
The Art of War was written around 500 BC by a man of amazing stragedy named Sun Tzu. It was written on very thin strips of bamboo and pain stakenly sewed together. This volume describes the strgedies to create a very successful life, win in battles and relationships. This book has been used through the ages as a guide in battles. It is the cor coriculum in many war colleges including West Point. Sun Tzu successfully predicted the outcome of the battle of Getiesberg, and the Vietnam war. I recomm ...more
Huda Aweys
My review in English first then in Arabic - مراجعة بالانجليزية يليها مراجعة بالعربية
The arts of war, a new field i did not read in it before, sometimes I felt that I am reading a plan of offensive football team ! And at other times i felt like I am reading women's plan to provoke its neighbor! :) It is comprehensive book about the wars that we face in our lives in general;>
تلك اول مرة أقرأ فيها عن ذلك النوع من الفنون ! شعرت أحيانا و كأننى اقرأ خطة هجومية لفريق كرة قدم ! و احيانا اخرى و ك
Alfaniel Aldavan
Oct 13, 2013 Alfaniel Aldavan marked it as abandoned
The Art of War against corporate takeover of user rights

"If you don't pay for the product, then you're not the customer, you're the product", media analysts have told us plainly a long time ago.

Be that as it may, the GoodReads experience has both common and unique features. The past years have seen MySpace raise and fall, Facebook shamelessly mocking users privacy and still going on, Twitter changing their API according to the phase of the moon and keeping personal data hidden from users, Google
Jason Pettus
Apr 07, 2009 Jason Pettus rated it really liked it
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography []. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally here.)

The CCLaP 100: In which I read for the first time a hundred so-called "classics," then write essays on whether or not they deserve the label. The Art of War is essay #27 of this series.

The story in a nutshell:
More of a technical manual than a piece of general literature, The Art of War is a field gui
Ahmed Abdelhamid
Nov 04, 2012 Ahmed Abdelhamid rated it liked it
مراجعة كتاب صن تسو كاملة...
كتبت تعليقا كلما سمحت الفرصة بالتوازي مع المراجعة.
الكتاب عبارة عن مجموعة من الحكم و النصائح المباشرة، يسقطها البعض بالأساس على العلوم الاستراتيجية الحربية كأحد الكتب الكلاسيكية في فن الحرب. ولكن أيضا يعتبر مرجعا رئيسا لكتب الإدارة و القيادة بشكل عام. البعض يسقط النصائح نفسها على “التجارة”.

لماذا الكتاب مهم؟

كما أسلفنا، قيل أن أمريكا اعتمدت خططا منه في حرب عاصفة الصحراء، و اعتمده الفيتناميين في حربهم ضد امريكا، و اعتمده الإسرائيليين في حروب كثيرة مع العرب، و
Oct 01, 2015 Mahdi rated it really liked it
یک فرمانده ی بزرگ نظامی، پانصد سال قبل از میلاد مسیح، کتابی اعجاب انگیز و ستودنی در مورد شیوه های فرماندهی لشکر می نویسد که تا سال های سال، در کشورهای شرق دور به عنوان دستور راه فرماندهان جنگ استفاده می شده. هم اکنون این کتاب در لیست کتاب های پیشنهادی ارتش امریکا برای دانشگاه های افسری و نظامی است.

این کتاب، درست در مقابل هاگاکوره: کتاب سامورایی قرار می گیرد.

هاگاکوره، کتابی سامورایی، یاد می دهد که چطور از شکست و مرگ نهراسید و اهدافی والاتر از سودهای دنیوی و عقل حسابگر داشته باشید: به فکر شجاعت ب
5.0 stars. One of the most influential books ever written and certainly the foundational book on basic military strategy and tactics. Amazingly enough, its wisdom is still relevant today even after over 2500 years since its original creation.
Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten*
Buddy read with Anuradha!

Sorry, this wasn't much of a buddy read, was it? We'll have to do another one, a proper one sometime. Let me explain.

This audiobook wound up in my collection (I think) when a friend left it along with a bunch of DVDs after he'd been living with us for awhile, and I just sort of absconded with it. Joe Mantegna reads, which made me happy (being the Criminal Minds nut that I am). The audiobook has four discs, but the book itself only takes up about a disc and a half of that
Dec 05, 2009 PlatKat rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Boys
Recommended to PlatKat by: Bryan, and then Dominic
Back when I was the tender age of 16, a guy I really liked lent me this book. He said it was his favorite book and that I would love it too. I excitedly rushed home to devour this piece of literature in hopes that we could have one more thing in common to bring us even closer together.

Now I'm 28, and the more things change, the more they stay the same. This time, I am living in sin with the guy I do so very much desire, and I know he doesn't give a rat's ass whether I read the book or not.

But ju
Ahmad  Ebaid
Mar 02, 2016 Ahmad Ebaid rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: سياسة
"القائد الذي يصغي لمشورتي ويعمل بها - سيقهر وينتصر, ومن هم مثله يجب أن يستمروا في موقع القيادة. القائد الذي لا يصغي لمشورتي فلا يعمل بها – سيعاني الهزيمة, ومن هنا يجب أن يصرفوا من الخدمة"

الكتاب هو واحد من أهم وأندر مخطوطات العالم القديم, يتحدّث عن فنون الحرب العسكرية, كتبه حكيم صيني في القرن السادس قبل الميلاد تقريبا, وفي تقدير مؤرخين آخرين في حدود القرن الثالث قبل الميلاد

تعود أهميته لبقاء أغلب ما فيه صالح للاستخدام حتى الآن, حتى إنه وزع منه نسخ على جنود الجيش الأمريكي أثناء حرب الكويت

أول ترجم
Riku Sayuj
Oct 24, 2011 Riku Sayuj rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not entirely sure if Giles' was the right translation to pick up. In any case, it had a certain majesty to it and the timeless elegance of great works. Not sure about the relevance and applicablity that the back cover boasted of though. My interest was derived primarily from the rich tapestry it wove of 600 BC China.
رغد عبد الزهرة
كنت أتوقعه كتاباً صعباً ومملا
لكن العكس، كتاب بالمختصر المفيد، فيه الكثير من البديهيات بلا شك
لكنه كتاب جيد لم يضع فيه الوقت.
Apr 02, 2009 Brandon rated it it was amazing
The version of the Art of War I would recommend is by Shambhala. It's the most readable and most touching translations I've found of this book. The Shambhala translation comes with essays by the Shambhala group, which add to the great depth and breadth of this work. I've read this book two or three times, with the essays, and I will continue to read it many more times throughout my life. Despite the name, it's not just for those interested in war. It's a book about strategy and rhythms and flow ...more
Feb 08, 2015 Kris43 rated it it was amazing

Give or take a few thousand years and things that count haven't changed all that much.
Wise words of the old general still ring true, although they sometimes leave a bitter after taste.
Maybe because they are stripped on any romanticism that more modern authors love to coat them in?
War is at its core a dirty business.
The Art of War is often referenced in other books and movies as being a great source of information on how to strategize in business as well as war. I believe Donald Trump has raved about it more than once as something that has helped him build his, um, "empire".

The first section is the Lionel Giles' translation of Sun Tzu's masterpiece; the second section is also Lionel Giles' translation of Sun Tzu's masterpiece, with his own interpretations interspersed throughout the reading. Essentially one
عبدالله اليعقوبي
كل من يرى أن هذا الكتاب لم يعد صالحا لهذا الزمن فهو مخطئ وتنقصه معلومات واقعية، هذا الكتاب يقرأه العسكريون في زماننا هذا وعديدة هي الخطط المسماة بسون تزو ومن الجيوش من تفرض على جنودها قراءته قبل الحرب هذا بالإضافة إلى الشركات غير التقليدية والتي تعتمد على الكتاب للتحكم في السوق وهزيمة منافسيها.


الكتاب مذهل، كيف لسون تزو أن يعرف كل هذا ويقدمه بتمكن وتقنية.
الكتاب يقدم لك الخطوط العريضة والنصائح العامة لما قبل الحرب وقبيل الحرب وأثناءها وكذلك كيفية الخروج منها.
نفسية الجنود .. الطرق .. المؤونة .. الق
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Sun Tzu (孫子; pinyin: Sūnzǐ) is a honorific title bestowed upon Sūn Wu (孫武 c. 544-496 BC), the author of The Art of War (孫子兵法), an immensely influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy. Sun Tzu believed in the use of the military sciences to effect outcomes that would result in peace.

In the author's name, Sūn Wu, the character wu, meaning "military", is the same as the character in wu shu
More about Sun Tzu...

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“Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.” 2112 likes
“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” 1679 likes
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