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Railroads and Rifles is a lucid and deeply-researched account of the interaction of three key factors in the unification of Germany - the growth of the railways and their relationship with war, and the development of the breech-loading rifle and Krupp's rifled cannon. When this book first appeared almost forty years ago, a gulf had developed between the study of warmaking in its operational contexts, and war's wider aspects. Social, economic, cultural, political issues were the themes of a "new military history" that at times excluded combat as a matter of principle. Railroads and Rifles was intended to reassert the synergies between war at its sharp end and war as it impacted the societies that armed forces reflected and represented. The ideas it introduces, the questions it raises, remain vital in a new century. The original edition, keenly sought by scholars and researchers, has been out of print and hard-to-find for many years. This edition is much more than a straight reprint, featuring a thorough new introduction by the author and new maps.
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Dennis Showalter holds MA and PhD degrees from the University of Minnesota. He joined the Colorado College faculty in 1969 and stayed on, rising through the ranks to full professor. "Teaching undergraduates in a first-rate liberal arts college combined with being an active scholar- I've lived my dream for over forty years. How many can say that?" Dennis has been a visiting professor at the US Air Frorce Academy and the US Military Academy, and Oppenheimer Professor at the Marine Corps University, as well as speaking and lecturing widely. He has written or edited over dozen books, and published around 150 articles on subjects ranging from the development of the Prussian needle gun to an essay on military themes and images in the TV series 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer'. "But the students at Colorado Collegemake it work for me. They're the best an instructor could want - working with them keeps me fresh and honest. I could retire-but I'm having too much fun to quit!"
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