Thursday, May 23, 2013

Exam Help from Goodreads

One of the methods I use to nail exams is to cite books that I've read. It seems like a really simple method, but apparently I'm pretty much the only person in class who actually does it. Seriously, I will do footnotes in my exams. It's a technique, so to speak, that I picked up from working with sensitive information, which must often be cited in order to ensure accuracy and ability to find the original source. That particular method is pretty similar to citations and footnotes in academic work, only the work I do tends to be a lot more important than academic work, because - let's face it - a lot of academic work is nonsense that will never serve any actual purpose. (Strategic Studies, thankfully, does not fall into this category, especially not in the way that anthropology or sociology do.)

So, with my last set of exams coming up, I thought to myself, "Why not put together a list of the books that I've read that have informed my opinions on a variety of these topics, and review that list in order to ensure that I have plenty of books to cite while writing my essays?" Fortunately, a couple of weeks ago I decided to actually invest an hour or so into the Goodreads account that I've allowed to lay fallow since 2007. I know, right? I went in and entered most of the books I've read since about 1996, maybe even a few before that, and then culled the list to include only those books which directly or indirectly apply to the subject matter. Here's my list:

  • A Bloody Business
  • Assault from the Sea
  • A Savage War of Peace
  • An Unorthodox Soldier
  • Another Bloody Century
  • Arabian Sands
  • Band of Brothers
  • Black Hawk Down
  • Bravo Two Zero
  • Ceasar Against The Celts
  • Citizen Soldiers
  • Dune
  • Faith of My Fathers
  • Guests of the Ayatollah
  • Heart of Darkness
  • How Did This Happen?
  • How the Irish Saved Civilization
  • Imperial Grunts
  • In the Service of the Sultan
  • Inferno
  • Intelligence Power in Peace and War
  • Iron Coffins
  • Islamic Imperialism
  • Legionnaire
  • Modern Military Strategy
  • No Easy Day
  • Orkneyinga Saga
  • Papa Bravo Romeo
  • Plutarch's Lives
  • Rising Sun
  • Rogue Warrior
  • Shadow War
  • Starship Troopers
  • The Agricola and the Germania
  • The Civil War
  • The Conquest of Gaul
  • The Evolution of Nuclear Strategy
  • The Prince
  • The Return of History and the End of Dreams
  • Sea Power
  • Thinking About Nuclear Weapons
  • Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • Warfighting
  • World Politics and the Evolution of War

    I obviously won't cite all of these books, but if a couple of them are on my mind at the right time, it'll help. Totally worth the effort, I tell you what.
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