If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle….
These are the words of ancient Chinese philosopher Sun Tzu, whose now-classic treatise, The Art of War, was written more than 2,500 years ago. Originally a text for victory on the battlefield, the book has vastly transcended its original purpose.
Here is a seminal work on the philosophy of successful leadership that is as applicable to contemporary business as it is to war. Today many leading American business schools use the text as required reading for aspiring managers, and even Oliver Stone’s award-winning film Wall Street cites The Art of War as a guide to those who strive for success.
Now acclaimed novelist James Clavell, for whom Sun Tzu’s writing has been an inspiration, gives us a newly edited Art of War. Author of the best-selling Asian saga consisting of Shogun, Tai-Pan, Gai-jin, King Rat, Noble House, and Whirlwind, Clavell first heard about Sun Tzu in Hong Kong in 1977, and since then The Art Of War has been his constant companion–he refers to it frequently in Noble House. He has taken a 1910 translation of the book and clarified it for the contemporary reader. This new edition of The Art Of War is an extraordinary book made even more relevant by an extraordinary editor.
About The Art of War
Conflict is an inevitable part of life, according to this ancient Chinese classic of strategy, but everything necessary to respond to conflict wisely, thoroughly, and victoriously is right before us at all times. The key to skillful action in any situation is in knowing those things that make up the environment and then seeing the patterns they form so that their power becomes available to us. It is not necessary to change the nature of things to find victory. Since, as Sun Tzu teaches, aggression and response in kind can lead only to destruction, we must learn to work with conflict in a more profound and effective way. The Art of War shows us how.
The Art of War gives us proven strategic skills to apply when we need to take action and overcome obstacles in rapidly changing, chaotic situations. Though ancient in origin, these strategies are accessible because they are based on the ways we already do things. As Sun Tzu shows, rather than getting mired in conflict, we can create momentum and bring about the tipping point to achieve success.
About The Art of War
Compiled more than two thousand years ago by a mysterious warrior-philosopher, The Art of War is still perhaps the most prestigious and influential book of strategy in the world today, as eagerly studied in Asia by modern politicians and executives as it as been by military leaders since ancient times. As a study of the anatomy of organizations in conflict, The Art of War applies to competition and conflict in general, on every level from the interpersonal to the international. Its aim is invincibility, victory without battle, and unassailable strength through understanding of the physics, politics, and psychology of conflict.
This translation presents the classic from the point of view of its background in the great spiritual tradition of Taoism, the origin of psychology, science, and technology in East Asia and the source of the insights into human nature that underlie this most revered of handbooks for success. Translated from a standard collection of commentaries on Sun Tzu’s text by eleven interpreters, the work has been edited by Thomas Cleary to bring out the meaning of the principles of strategy. In addition, the translator provides an extensive introduction discussing the content and background of the book.
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"The most useful and important book ever written for aspiring leaders." —Toronto Sun Times
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