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Why We Fight


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About the Author

Mike Martin is a visiting research fellow at the Department of War Studies, King's College London, having previously studied biology at Oxford. Between these experiences, he served as a British Army officer in Afghanistan. His previous books include An Intimate War: An Oral History of the Helmand Conflict and Crossing the Congo: Over Land and Water in a Hard Place, the latter of which was shortlisted for the Edward Stanford Adventure Travel Writing Award in 2016.


'Fascinating [and] accessible . . . Martin's enjoyable book makes a positive contribution to a major debate'.
'[Why We Fight] should be required reading for not just biologists, psychologists and historians, but military leaders and recruiters as well.' -- British Army Journal
'Why We Fight is a pivotal book in the study of conflict. It brilliantly deploys recent discoveries in psychology and neuroscience to devastating effect. It has radical implications for policies for conflict reduction: identity and status need to supplant interests and ideology as the focal points for change.' -- Professor Sir Paul Collier, author of 'The Bottom Billion'
'Anyone interested in war and international relations will find much to challenge and intrigue them in Mike Martin's application of evolutionary theory to the question of what drives men to fight.' -- Professor Sir Lawrence Freedman, author of 'The Future of War: A History'
'An important and illuminating book that addresses very clearly the fundamental questions underlying the apparent paradoxes of violence and conflict.' -- Patrick Hennessey, author of 'The Junior Officers' Reading Club: Killing Time and Fighting Wars'
'This wide-ranging book explores how the evolution of the brain has shaped human behaviour in violence and war. Fascinating and insightful.' -- Stathis Kalyvas, Gladstone Professor of Government

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