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Strategy

By: Lawrence Freedman
Narrated by: Michael Butler Murray
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Publisher's Summary

In Strategy: A History, Sir Lawrence Freedman, one of the world's leading authorities on war and international politics, captures the vast history of strategic thinking, in a consistently engaging and insightful account of how strategy came to pervade every aspect of our lives. The range of Freedman's narrative is extraordinary, moving from the surprisingly advanced strategy practiced in primate groups, to the opposing strategies of Achilles and Odysseus in The Iliad, the strategic advice of Sun Tzu and Machiavelli, the great military innovations of Baron Henri de Jomini and Carl von Clausewitz, the grounding of revolutionary strategy in class struggles by Marx, the insights into corporate strategy found in Peter Drucker and Alfred Sloan, and the contributions of the leading social scientists working on strategy today. The core issue at the heart of strategy, the author notes, is whether it is possible to manipulate and shape our environment rather than simply become the victim of forces beyond one's control. Time and again, Freedman demonstrates that the inherent unpredictability of this environment - subject to chance events, the efforts of opponents, the missteps of friends - provides strategy with its challenge and its drama. Armies or corporations or nations rarely move from one predictable state of affairs to another, but instead feel their way through a series of states, each one not quite what was anticipated, requiring a reappraisal of the original strategy, including its ultimate objective. Thus the picture of strategy that emerges in this book is one that is fluid and flexible, governed by the starting point, not the end point. A brilliant overview of the most prominent strategic theories in history, from David's use of deception against Goliath, to the modern use of game theory in economics, this masterful volume sums up a lifetime of reflection on strategy.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2013 Lawrence Freedman (P)2014 Audible Inc.
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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Great book on strategy

The book started slow but only when comparing it on how it ends. Great book on strategy from “the beginning”, to war, to business and politics. Most definitely will be on the lookout for more of his works.

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Would be 5 stars if the first 20 hrs were removed

The last 10 hrs of the book was insightful, the first 20 were overly long and torturous at times.

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A deep strategy series - but slow towards the end.

The problem with doing a series of lectures on Strategy (or any thing) is that it is almost impossible to longtitudenaly cover 1500CE, with WWII, and the future. The stretegic conceptions changed so fast between 1900 and 2000 that it just lost me. Mixing military, commercial and personal stretegic process I found too hard as a auditory process. It may have worked in a lecture theatre venue. Essentially it is a cruise until year dot, interesting to about 1930, and then it confused me. There wasn't a clear segmentation of concepts.
I gave it away about 2 hours before the conclusion.
Probably my fault.
Mark Freeman.

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Reviews Useful

Takes hours to start but is definitely useful when it picks up. Especially regarding the last 100 years. don't be put off by this review though.

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