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Command and Morale: The British Army on the Western Front 1914-18 Hardcover – 20 Mar 2014


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Pen & Sword Military (20 Mar. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1781590214
  • ISBN-13: 978-1781590218
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.5 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 546,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Professor Gary Sheffield holds the Chair of War Studies at the University of Wolverhampton and he is a leading authority on the First World War. Previously he has held Chairs at the University of Birmingham and King's College London and was a lecturer at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He is President of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, and a Vice-President of the Western Front Association. He has published widely, especially on the First World War, and contributes to many newspapers, journals and magazines, and frequently broadcasts on television and radio. Among his books are The Chief: Douglas Haig and the British Army, The War Studies Reader, Douglas Haig: War Diaries and Letters 1914-1918 (edited with John Bourne), The Somme, Forgotten Victory: The First World War - Myths and Realities and Command and Control on the Western Front: The British Army's Experience, 1914-19 (edited with Dan Todman).

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10 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Old Soldier Sahib on 6 Jun. 2014
Format: Hardcover
This volume brings together a number of Professor Sheffield's shorter pieces and they've been organised under the broad headings of Context, Command, and Morale. Gary Sheffield is a well-known face on TV and is an authority on military history. His essays are well researched and they are profusely annotated with footnotes. There is also a very thorough index.

Compelling, unputdownable page-turners these essays are not, but then you gets what you pays for and if academic study of the conflict is what floats your boat then this one is going to be a must-buy. There is some good research here on the 22nd Royal Fusiliers and there is much to commend the book in general. Essential reading, no, but it's a good library book that should be well stamped this year.
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4 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Henry Dubb on 4 July 2014
Format: Hardcover
Such an interesting subject but such a disappointing book.

Why does academic writing have to be so turgid? The clotted prose overwhelms whatever argument there is and the scholarship is so narrow that you feel as if the book amounts to little more than special pleading - special pleading on behalf of the army command. A more curious writer with a greater range of sympathies and a wider knowledge of the sources would have approached the same subject and written a more interesting book I think. But this is a dull and as unimaginative as General Haig's tactics.

In World Cup terms - since it's on at the moment - this is Algeria 0 Honduras 0.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Leadership and Spirit in the BEF 5 Feb. 2015
By A. A. Nofi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
A summary of the review on StrategyPage.Com:

‘For well over two decades Prof. Sheffield (Wolverhampton) has been producing ground-breaking work on the Great War, sorting through the evidence to brush away the many myths which have come to dominate popular, and at time academic, perceptions of the conflict to give us a more accurate picture of that traumatizing event in modern Western history. Command and Morale gathers thirteen of his essays on particular aspects of the problem of command, officer recruitment, morale, and officer-enlisted relations, including regular troops, volunteers, conscripts, or Dominion. These are grouped under three broad categories. “Context ” looks at Britain and its empire at war and at the problem of coalition warfare. “Command” examines officer background, recruitment, experience, and performance before and during the war, with a focus on the character of the British Army. “Morale” looks at the “spirit” of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), opening with an overview, and then looking at of officer-enlisted relations, non-traditional forms of discipline, and more, including class-related problems of middle and even working class officers. Command and Morale is a very useful contribution to the literature on the BEF.’

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