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The Kaiser's Army: Technological, Tactical and Operational Dilemmas in Germany During the Machine Age 1870-1918 Hardcover – 1 Oct 2001

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 328 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc (1 Oct. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195143353
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195143355
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,577,730 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"This is a book that all serious military professionals need to read - NOW!" -- British Army Review

About the Author

Eric Dorn Brose is Professor of History and Head of the Department of History and Politics at Drexel University. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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THE COUNTRYSIDE AROUND Konitz simmered in the warm September sun. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have the 2001 paperback edition just bought here. The cover is the same as that shown.

The illustration quality is shockingly bad.

I cannot blame the author, so will not "down star" the book on that account. I expect he is embarrassed.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5 reviews
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Heavy Military History 21 Jan. 2002
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A serious book of military history. This superbly researched book on the German military is not for the casual reader of military history. The Kaiser's Army is an in-depth discussion of German military reforms during the end of the 19th century. It describes Germany's attempts to move from a traditional to a modern army as technological advances race forward. The description of the various debates between reformers and traditionalists is excellent. The book is a great study in how a large organization, The Germany Army, struggles with change. The sections dealing with the birth of small unit tactics is worthy of merit. The only draw back is the last quarter of the book when the author falls into a history of World War I. The author covers too much general history of the War and not enough focus on what made the rest of the book so good, the role of technology and military reform. I recommend this book for any serious follower of European military history.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Myth of the Technophobes 20 Feb. 2013
By JDG - Published on
Format: Paperback
The Kaiser's Army is rigorously researched but horribly analyzed. Brose blames feudalistic, blue-blooded, aristocratic, reactionary technophobes and the middle-class bourgeois who aped them for supposedly ignoring the impact of technology in the pursuit of chivalric glory (yes, Brose actually uses quasi-marxist terminology to the point of parody). The author does not seem to understand the practical issues involved in resolving the paradoxes between dispersion and tactical control, or decentralization and coordination, all without handy and reliable radios.

Echevarria's After Clausewitz was actually published before The Kaiser's Army, but feels like a successful refutation of Brose's effort. Spend your money there.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Bias against German general staff 4 July 2010
By Howitzer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Overall the book could have been a great estimate of the military capability of german armies, but the author seems to have an agenda against the german general staff.Some aspects of the criticism like the aristocracy and the lack of appreciation of modern infantry tactics might have some truth in it, but the accusation that germans lagged behind in artillery is quite shocking to say the least.If nothing else the author should have consulted general Herr's book ( insecptor general of french artillery).Herr clearly points out the superority of german heavy artillery and howitzers.Even in terms of field artillery the diffrence was not so significant as is claimed by the author.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Brose--The Kaiser's army 5 Aug. 2009
By John W. Plattner - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book very interesting because it illustrated how the inner workings of the various top-level staffs plus the Kaiser set Germany up to lose the war.
Brose's style of writing is very good and holds one's interest.
7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Flawed 30 Mar. 2009
By Robert Thompson - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The most blatant trait of Brose is his exceedingly negative portrayal of the German forces. To argue that the reason for Germany's' defeat rests on decades of slow acceptance of new technology is foolish. For instance, Brose fails to mention the superiority of German heavy artillery during the first few years of the Great War. Furthermore, it appears Brose is incapable of writing Kaiser Wilhelm II when referring to the German monarch. Calling the monarch Kaiser William is nothing short of arrogance.

If you want a fair assessment of the Imperial German Army look elsewhere.
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