The Gulf War appears to have dashed the hopes of many for a more peaceful international order. In this book, however, Martin Shaw argues that, despite the war, militarism is in decisive retreat. Demilitarization, which has already gone a long way in Western societies, is now sweeping the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and may well progress further. Because of this, the social institutions of the Cold War, especially conscription in continental Europe, are being brought into question, and there is a real prospect of ′post–military citizenship′ in the industrial societies of the twenty–first century.
The book includes a full discussion of the main sociological perspectives on militarism and ′armament culture′, together with detailed information on the ′world military order′. There are careful examinations of recent developments in Europe and of Third World wars and militarism, and it concludes with a discussion of the implications of the Gulf War. This book will appeal to a wide range of readers, but particularly to those interested in sociology, international relations, political theory, peace studies and military studies.