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The End of War Hardcover – January 17, 2012
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"Winsomely and persuasively, John Horgan suggests that the world may be headed toward peace. This book is straightforward, drawing on the best scientific evidence available, examining the writings of the best scholars on both sides of these issues. Horgan believes human destiny is not predetermined. Human choices matter. We are encouraged not because of pious idealistic hopes, but because the best evidence demonstrates that the prospects for peace are eminently realistic."
Dr. James C. Juhnke
"This is a heartfelt and important book, one that largely succeeds: at least, in making its point. Whether it is comparably successful in its deeper goalchanging peoples’ mindsis another matter, although let’s hope that it is."
David Barash, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Dialogue like that Horgan has opened here, in my opinion, is where the best pragmatic solutions are likely to emerge.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Praise for The End of Science
"[In this] intellectually bracing, sweepingly reported, often brilliant and sometimes bullying book, John Horgan makes the powerful case that the best and most exciting scientific discoveries are behind us."
New York Times Book Review, front page review
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Horgan is a writer for "Scientific American," and approaches the question of whether war can be ended as a scientist. It's all about research. He concludes that war can be ended, has in various times and places been ended, and is in the process (an entirely reversible process) of being ended on the earth right now.
The war abolitionists of the 1920s Outlawry movement would have loved this book, would have seen it as a proper extension of the ongoing campaign to rid the world of war. But it is a different book from theirs. It does not preach the immorality of war. That idea, although proved truer than ever by the two world wars, failed to prevent the two world wars. When an idea's time has come and also gone, it becomes necessary to prove to people that the idea wasn't rendered impossible or naïve by "human nature" or grand forces of history or any other specter. Horgan, in exactly the approach required, preaches the scientific observation of the success (albeit incomplete as yet) of preaching the immorality of war.
The evidence, Horgan argues, shows that war is a cultural contagion, a meme that serves its own ends, not ours (except for certain profiteers perhaps). Wars happen because of their cultural acceptance and are avoided by their cultural rejection.Read more ›
"Those of us who want to make the world a better place--more democratic, equitable, healthier, cleaner--should make abolishing the invention of war our priority, because peace can help bring about many of the other changes we seek. If you want less pollution, more money for healthcare and education, an improved legal and political system--work for peace."
Horgan is a college teacher as well as a writer, and his style and message seem pitched to the next generation coming along, urging them kindly but firmly to share his optimism and to work towards the goal of putting an end to war. The benefits are incalculable.
From the 1950s fold song by Ed McCurdy,
Last night I had the strangest dream
I'd ever dreamed before
I dreamed the world had all agreed
To put an end to war
On listening to the author (John) I called in and said that part of the problem is that the media doesn't cover these issues- that there are peace movements in Israel and Palestine with answers that are not covered. The subject is too controversial in a militaristic country like ours.
The End of War will probably not be covered by the NY Times, the Washington Post, nor any major media outlets.
Our peace groups are not covered in this militaristic society- but we know about them- Code Pink, ANSWER, Occupiers, etc.
Established media- tv, radio (except for Democracy Now) and all major newspapers do not have time for such truths as- Bradley Manning who exposed our soldiers killing civilians sits in jail while another soldier- Wuterich- who killed civilians in Iraq gets a few months.
To me, the established media is not fair and balanced and has blood on its hands. The more all the anti war stuff that has come out since WW I (yes it was around before (Rob' Lowell- Conscientious Objectors) but REALLY smothered then)- the better!
David Swanson's War Is a Lie- and S Brian Willson's book, Blood on the Tracks are also good books on the subject- and Swanson has written an review here.
My country has been at war since I was born (1941). We males here - and around the world- are definitely wired for violence- if we weren't already from centuries of sneaking up on animals in the forest.
Having served prison time for a nonviolent protest (of Vietnam) I think about our male programming and the violence/nonviolence crossroads a lot.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
"The End of War" is an easy, quick read mainly because of Horgan's engaging style. The thesis is that war is not an inescapable fact of human nature, so we should be able... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Max Roga
The End of War is an essential read for anyone interested in why fighting is something that plagues the human species so vigorously. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Aditi Rao
Author wrestles well with the conundrums that are involved in situations that have often preceded wars, and maps out some of how we might lessen the likelihood of ending up in... Read morePublished on March 19, 2014 by James R. Iberg
Horgan does a nice job of keeping your attention throughout the book. He uses stores and anecdotes from other scholars that are interesting and help support his argument. Read morePublished on December 20, 2013 by Robert B
Horgan reviews a great swathe of the literature and presents a compelling case that war, like most other human activities, is a choice we make, not a "fact" of human nature.Published on June 25, 2013 by Amazon Customer
Over a lifetime of thinking about the problem of
war,I have read many books on the subject.This one is definitely the best.It is well written, short and to the point. Read more
Some books are inspirational, some aspirational, this one is both; The central premise asks the question whether we are biologically hard wired for war, or is it a learned... Read morePublished on March 9, 2012 by The lone Reader
I am waving my hands frantically, and frankly, to gain Mr. Horgan's attention possibly for partipation in one of his many surveys and to proclaim that I know how it ends; how war... Read morePublished on February 6, 2012 by Philip Henika