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Cécile Fabre's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Cécile Fabre recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Cécile Fabre's favorite book recommendations of all time.


Killing in War

Killing a person is in general among the most seriously wrongful forms of action, yet most of us accept that it can be permissible to kill people on a large scale in war. Does morality become more permissive in a state of war? Jeff McMahan argues that conditions in war make no difference to what morality permits and the justifications for killing people are the same in war as they are in other contexts, such as individual self-defence. This view is radically at odds with the traditional theory of the just war and has implications that challenge common sense views. McMahan argues, for example,... more
Recommended by Cécile Fabre, and 1 others.

Cécile FabreI admire philosophers who are willing to go, with relentless scrutiny, where their argument will take them, and who don’t want to evade the most controversial implications of their argument by fudging the issue. (Source)

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Le Silence de la mer

Les Éditions de Minuit ont été conçues par Vercors à l'automne 1941 et créées par lui avec Pierre de Lescure. Le Silence de la mer (1942) est le premier titre à y être publié. Une vingtaine d'autres suivront jusqu'à la Libération, mais c'est le texte inaugural de Vercors qui connaît le plus grand retentissement. Cette sobre histoire, où une famille française s'oppose par le silence à l'officier allemand qu'elle a été obligée de loger, est un plaidoyer implacable contre la barbarie hitlérienne. Sous la calme surface des eaux, c'est la terrible « mêlée des bêtes dans la mer » qui se... more
Recommended by Cécile Fabre, and 1 others.

Cécile FabreOccupation, particularly this kind of occupation where the enemy, the occupier, lives in such close proximity with the occupied population, is one of the worst dilemmatic ways in which a war can be conducted (Source)

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All Quiet on the Western Front

One by one the boys begin to fall…

In 1914 a room full of German schoolboys, fresh-faced and idealistic, are goaded by their schoolmaster to troop off to the ‘glorious war’. With the fire and patriotism of youth they sign up. What follows is the moving story of a young ‘unknown soldier’ experiencing the horror and disillusionment of life in the trenches.
Recommended by Cécile Fabre, and 1 others.

Cécile FabreHe knows that his pleasure at a beautiful landscape, at the smell of good food, will forever be coloured by what the landscape looked like in the trenches, by the food that was cooked in the trenches. (Source)

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From the Athenian attack on Melos to the My Lai Massacre, from the wars in the Balkans through the first war in Iraq, Michael Walzer examines the moral issues surrounding military theory, war crimes, and the spoils of war. He studies a variety of conflicts over the course of history, as well as the testimony of those who have been most directly involved--participants, decision makers, and victims. In his introduction to this new edition, Walzer specifically addresses the moral issues surrounding the war in and occupation of Iraq, reminding us once again that "the argument about war and... more
Recommended by Mary Kaldor, Cécile Fabre, and 2 others.

Mary KaldorThere is a long history of literature on what counts as a just war. (Source)

Cécile FabreI should say that I disagree with many of the claims that Walzer makes in the book (Source)

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War And Peace

War and Peace broadly focuses on Napoleon's invasion of Russia in 1812 and follows three of the most well-known characters in literature: Pierre Bezukhov, the illegitimate son of a count who is fighting for his inheritance and yearning for spiritual fulfillment; Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, who leaves his family behind to fight in the war against Napoleon; and Natasha Rostov, the beautiful young daughter of a nobleman who intrigues both men.

As Napoleon's army invades, Tolstoy brilliantly follows characters from diverse backgrounds—peasants and nobility, civilians and...

Vanora BennettAlthough it was published in 1869, War and Peace deals with events half a century earlier. This makes it one of the first historical novels – and, all these years later, it’s still the greatest. (Source)

Tendai HuchuTolstoy does something which is very unusual in War and Peace and which, for his time, was pretty profound: he sees the conditions of the ordinary soldier on the battlefield. (Source)

Niall FergusonAs a middle aged man, I react differently to Tolstoy than I did when I first read War and Peace at about 15. (Source)

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