The March of Folly has ratings and reviews. Twice a winner of the Pulitzer Prize, author Barbara Tuchman now tackles the pervasive presence of. 64 quotes from The March of Folly: From Troy to Vietnam: ‘Chief among the forces affecting political folly is lust for power, named by Tacitus as the mo. Pulitzer Prize–winning historian Barbara W. Tuchman, author of the World War I masterpiece The Guns of August, grapples with her boldest subject.

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The March of Folly: In this book Tuchman takes a step beyond the traditional historian’s story-telling role to provide color-commentary about a specific subset of examples of misgovernment that she classifies as “folly. On the Papal actions in the lead up to the reformation was it really the individual actions of some degenerates who headed up a corrupt system or was it the emergence fokly nationalism in Europe?

Pulitzer Prize—winning historian Barbara W. From Troy to Vietnam”. Feb 04, Rindis rated it liked it Shelves: Surely common-sense would not have allowed these?

The March of Folly – Wikipedia

She’s just slumming it here; not trying very hard. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. It’s a wonderful addition to my collection, and I will undoubtedly return to its pages for quotes, references, and insights. Unlike The Guns of August which takes a narrative form The March of Folly reads more like a thesis folky carefully selected evidence presented to support it.

You’re so interested that you just glide along the pages, absorbed in her narrative web, while she’s filling your brain with smarts. In this sphere, foloy, which may be defined as the exercise of judgment acting on experience, common sense and available information, is less operative and more frustrated than it should be. Although appearing to be disparate events and time periods, and one being veiled by mythology, Tuchman asserts that each have similar characteristics and outcomes.

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The March of Folly by Barbara W. Tuchman | : Books

We are a prideful, belligerent, deceitful, artful, abrbara, umbragious — a word I learned in reading this book—species. Perhaps more than necessary to make the case for folly.

Tuchman’s main premise is that there have been many, many occasions in humanity’s past in which governments, rulers, kings, etc. Tuchman focuses on four such events, to wit: Whatever the reason, I find that the book does not live up to its promise, either conceptually or authorially. Man, talk about phoning it in Instead, we’re given front-row seats to the grinding wheel.

Do I need to mention the Yes-Men that surround them? By ruse of a clever groom who tethered a favorite mare at the critical spot, Darius’ horse performed on time and his fortunate master, thus singled out as the best man for the job, ascended the throne.

The Fall of Troy: A terrific end to an amazing bagbara of history. Her book is vivid, clear, unfussy, with just the right density of diction.

The March of Folly: From Troy to Vietnam

World History Military History Category: This irrationality is tne astounds us when we look back on these gross errors of judgment and Tuchman is especially scathing in dealing with the leaders who make such choices: On the other hand, it’s too short. From Troy to Vietnam.

These are the points when good practices suddenly seem like Follies. A book which informed my entire world view, and still does. My only quibble here is that I think Tuchman’s “objectivity” may have slipped away to make a sandwich or take a nap because you can readily see that she was strongly against the war. Subsequent history supports the book’s view regarding the folly of the Vietnam War.


Those with an interest in history. Aug 10, Keith rated it liked it Recommended to Keith by: Also, she actually is stronger in another classical case not mentioned in the title or in most descriptions of the book, viz.

The Americans acted under the illusion that they were fighting against Communism and restraining the so-called domino effect when in reality they were fighting against those who believed they were fighting a war of national liberation.

The Vietnam War was a badly managed war and was fought for troubling reasons, but I struggle to call it completely vain in purpose the way that Tuchman does. She was retelling twice-told tales without much original thought to add. The governments’ “wood-headedness” towards policy that is counter to anything rational as well as contrary to respected voices of reason is something that all ordinary members and voters of a democratic society ought to take heed of.

The popes, in spite of criticism from many clerics and kings continued to enrich themselves and their families, dissipating the power of the papacy, until the Reformation forced a behavioral change.