Bibliography 2015

Sunzi, Ralph D. Sawyer, and Mei-chün Sawyer. The Essential Art of War = Sun-tzu Ping-fa. New York: Basic, 2005. Print.

Xu, Yuanxiang. Sun Tzu: The Ultimate Master of War. Beijing: China Intercontinental, 2007. Print.

Unknown. “Sun Tzu Biography.” – Childhood, Life Achievements & Timeline. The Famous People.com, 12 Aug. 2012. Web. 25 Nov. 2015.

Kissinger, Henry. “2.” On China. New York: Penguin, 2011. N. pag. Print.

Unknown. “Acient.eu.” Acient.eu. Ancient, 18 Apr. 2014. Web. 16 Oct. 2015.

Brown, Jeremy, Mr. “Interview W/ Jeremy Brown (via Email).” Interview by Christopher Adams. Gmail. Google, 02 Nov. 2015. Web. 10 Nov. 2015. <https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#label/School/150caa07dc79f062>.

Document of Learning

I am most sorry for how late this is getting out, but for my document of learning I will be posting another draft of my speech. Here it is:

 

It’s sad, isn’t it? How mighty things can fall so quickly? How an empire built on twenty years of devoted service can crumble in just two?

The old king has perished, and his son has taken the throne. He is selfish, he takes everything for granted, and he threatens to kill any who oppose him. He doesn’t even seem to realize that the reason his kingdom is so large is because we didn’t act like him. Our enemies did, and that is why they lost! He is arrogant. He thinks he has walls, some impenetrable defence, immune to time. But with (arrogance), ignorance, insolence, assumption and stupidity, even the mightiest walls become thin air, so that any threat can strike a deadly blow against you.

I owe this king no loyalty, so I have moved back to my old home, where I will live the rest of my days in peace. Of course, if I live as a hermit, my teachings will be lost to the ages, because the rulers of this land have no respect for my lessons of non-combative fighting that have been proven again and again. The only way I can think of to preserve my teachings is to write them in a book. The book would preserve my ideas and proves that combat really is an art.

I shall call it, The Art of War.

Interview

OK, I have just concluded my interview with SF U’s Professor Jeremy Brown of the history department. His area of study is ancient China, so I thought he would be a perfect interviewee. I managed to find his email on the directory, an contacted him. He was pleased to accept, and the key points of the interview (via email) were:

Q:  What was the general area like? How did the environment work to Sun Tzu’s Favor?

A: “At one point during the Warring States Period there were more than 100 states: some as big as a European nation, others controlling no more than one or two walled cities.  They didn’t have very well defined borders.  Eventually, big states swallowed up the smaller ones, and the bigger states were the only ones that remained.  According to one source, the Zuozhuan, in the 259 years between 722 and 463 BC, there were more than 500 battles between states and over 100 civil wars within states.  So there was a market for Sun Tzu’s ideas.”

Q: Why were Sun Tzu’s tactics so effective?

A: ” Sun Tzu thought that heroism in battle was useless.  He also promoted the controversial idea that the best military leaders actually avoided war whenever possible. . . Knowledge is key to Sun Tzu: know your enemy’s strengths and weaknesses, know your own strengths and weaknesses, know the terrain, weather, economics, psychology.  Be as good at defense as at offence.”

Q: Why are Sun Tzu’s tactics still effective and in continuous use?

A: “The short answer is “because more often than not, they work.”  It’s rare to have evenly matched military opponents in a conflict.  More often we see asymmetry between opponents (guerrilla insurgencies or small terrorist cells versus established armies, for example)–but both sides can learn from Sun Tzu’s ideas.  As for why Sun Tzu’s philosophy has become popular in self-help and business books, I think it’s more of a fad.”

Q: Why was no one else using these tactics in China?

A: “Before Sun Tzu, it used to be that noble military leaders were qualified to command troops because their fathers had led before them.  It was hard for established military leaders to break away from hereditary rule and to go with a more practical instructional manual based on expertise rather than inheritance.  This required a change in the entire structure of society.”
All this information is very useful, an I plan to incorporate it into my speech and learning center (still to come). See you next time,

Christopher

Speech Draft

Hello everyone, this is my speech for eminent at it’s current level. (Please note that everything in the speech is subject to change, revision, and suggestions.)

It’s sad, isn’t it? How mighty things can fall so quickly? How the empire built on my twenty years of dedicated service can fall apart in two? The Kingdom of Wu, MY Kingdom of Wu, is the most powerful in the land, and it is crumbling at the seams. The old king has died, and his son has taken the throne. Not to be rude, but he is nothing like his father. He is selfish and arrogant, and he threatens to kill any who oppose him, even the general that is the reason he even has a kingdom to play with. He doesn’t even seem to realize that the reason his kingdom is so large is that our enemies acted exactly as he is acting, and that is why they lost. The reason we are so great is that we don’t – or didn’t – act like him. He thinks he has walls, some impenetrable defence, but with arrogance, ignorance, insolence, assumption and stupidity, even the mightiest walls become thin air, where even your own forces can strike a deadly blow against you. I owe this king no loyalty, and the home I built when I was just a lowly hermit still stands, so I will go there and live the rest of my days in peace. Of course, if I do that, my teachings will be lost to the ages, because this king has no respect for the lessons that have been proven again and again. The only form of compromise I can think of is a book; a lowly book that will stop my ideas from rotting away with me. A book that proves that combat really is an art. I shall call it “The Art of War.”

If you wish to tell me what you think of it, let me know with a comment.

Christopher