The New Makers of Modern Strategy: From the Ancient World to the Digital Age - Oxford Literary Festival

Sun 17 Mar 2024, 12:00 - 13:00

Hearing loop
Wheelchair accessible venue
Portrait of Professor Sir Lawrence Freedman FBA
Oxford Martin School: Lecture Theatre

This event is part of the Oxford Literary Festival

Military historians Professor Sir Lawrence Freedman FBA and Professor Sir Hew Strachan FBA talk about military strategy and their contributions to a new version of the definitive work on strategy and the key figures who have shaped the theory and practice of war over the centuries in their new book The New Makers of Modern Strategy: From the Ancient World to the Digital Age.

Freedman opens the book with a chapter on the history of strategy, in which he discusses the meaning of the word, and its origins in history. He looks at its implications in war and in the armed forces more generally, ranging from ancient Greece to the nuclear age. Freedman is Emeritus Professor of War Studies, King’s College London, and was a member of the official inquiry into Britain and the 2003 Iraq War.

Strachan’s contribution looks at the enduring relevance of the Prussian general and military theorist Clausewitz, including his influence on army commanders and the ‘purpose’ of war. Strachan says Clausewitz’s focus was on understanding war as a phenomenon rather than something transformed by technological change. Strachan is Professor of International Relations at the University of St Andrews and before that was the Chichele Professor of the History of War at the University of Oxford. He was heavily involved with the preparations for the centenary of the First World War.

Discussions are chaired by Angela Saini, a science journalist and author of four books including The Patriarchs: How Men came to Rule.

In partnership with:

Sign up to our email newsletters