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The Cognitive Challenge of War: Prussia 1806
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The Cognitive Challenge of War: Prussia 1806

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  30 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Responding to the enemy's innovation in war presents problems to soldiers and societies of all times. This book traces Napoleon's victory over Prussia in 1806 and Prussia's effort to recover from defeat to show how in one particular historical episode operational analyses together with institutional and political decisions eventually turned defeat to victory.

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Hardcover, 164 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Princeton University Press (first published January 1st 2009)
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Replicant33
Feb 03, 2014 Replicant33 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in military theory, operations, and reform
Recommended to Replicant33 by: Work
Shelves: read-in-2014
This is a surprisingly entertaining and enlightening read - particularly given its small size for a book written by the man best known as half of the two-man team that translated Carl von Clausewitz's massive tome of military theory, On War, into the best English translation available to date. Of course, Paret has further established his expertise in all things Clausewitz by giving us translations of Historical and Political Writings and Clausewitz and the State, not to mention his editing of ...more
Chuck
Apr 21, 2011 Chuck rated it really liked it
"The Cognitive Challenge of War: Prussia 1806" by Peter Paret is an expansion of a lecture given by Paret on how a society responds to a military disaster. The Prussians were decisively defeated by the Napoleon in 1806-7. Their country was dismembered, placed under heavy debt and became a strictly limited dependent of the French.

The book discusses some of the responses by Prussia and elements of it's society to the disaster. There is a short summary of the military campaigns of 1806 and 1807. Th
...more
Jur
Oct 27, 2014 Jur rated it it was amazing
Shelves: napoleonics
Excellent combination of military, art, social and intellectual history of the Prussian defeat at Jena and Auerstedt in 1806, and how it affected Prussian (and German) society, army and politics. Finally Paret distills this in an discussion of Clausewitz' theories on warfare, which he shows were influenced by much more than just military events.

I love how Paret weaves books like Kleist's The Prince of Homburg and paintings like The Chasseur in the Woods into his argument. Fascinating in their ow
...more
Ian Fleischmann
Feb 04, 2015 Ian Fleischmann rated it liked it
Shelves: military-thought
I'll admit, I took this one quickly but the unifying component of the book eluded me. This seemed like four essays related mostly because they addressed the Prussian military in the 1795-1914 time period. Paret's treatment of Jena and Auerstadt is fair enough but too sparse for any detailed level of analysis. The second section humanizes the characters of the day through an exposition of the arts - perhaps it gives a slightly fuller impression of Clausewitz and others. The true benefit of this ...more
Christopher
Aug 06, 2013 Christopher rated it it was amazing
Excellent, quick read. I particularly enjoyed the bits on Schiller's Wallenstein trilogy and how it provided a cognitive frame for Clausewitz and his contemporaries.
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American historian who has specialised in German military history in the Napoleonic era and German artists of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
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