This important new study demonstrates the growing maturity of naval history, for while at first sight it might appear to be aimed at a specialist audience, it skilfully uses a mastery of the specific to enhance our understanding of the general.
This book is impressively detailed, showing women's experience of demobilisation and the aftermath of armed conflict - an often neglected area of military study relating to women - as well as their feelings about morality, their male counterparts, uniforms, duties and a slew of other subjects.
Hanna Diamond's study of women in occupied France and the period immediately following the Liberation represents a considerable achievement and an invaluable contribution to scholarship on how French women responded to the hardships, upheavals and conflicts of wartime occupation.
Few areas of historical enquiry resonate with such contemporary relevance as the Arab-Israeli conflict, and any scholar attempting a book on the subject is walking into a politically charged minefield. Historians enquiring after the 'truth' are accused of partisan bias: after all, they must either be supporters of Zionism or the Arab cause.
With 'The Korean War' Peter Lowe returns to the subject of the 1950-53 south-east Asian conflict which he argues could have flared up into the third world war of the twentieth century (see also Peter Lowe 1986).
A distinguished historian of British strategic decision-making in the Great War, David French has now turned his attention to the British army in the Second World War, a shift in focus already signalled by a number of journal articles that have appeared over the last few years.
The appearance of a paperback version of an important book first published in 1995 is most welcome as it will make it more readily available. Equally, it is not easy to review such a work. The scholarly reviews that appeared noting its contents do not require emendation, because the book has not been rewritten.
It is to be expected that many edited collections of essays will be somewhat disparate in content and approach whatever the overall framework. This volume, however, is even more disparate than most.
When the Cold War ended it brought to a close the latest in a series of major challenges to western maritime supremacy. This, no doubt temporary, respite has forced the navies of the western world to focus on their role in a new environment in which high intensity war at sea is improbable in the immediate future.
It has been fashionable to downplay the importance of battles in medieval military history. 'Most campaigns did not end in battle largely because both commanders were reluctant to risk battle', was John Gillingham's verdict. He pointed out that Henry II never fought a battle, yet had a great military reputation.