In Why England Slept, at the book’s core, John F. Kennedy asks: Why was England so poorly prepared for the war? He provides a comprehensive analysis of the tremendous miscalculations of the British leadership when it came to dealing with Germany and leads readers into considering other questions: Was the poor state of the British army the reason Chamberlain capitulated at Munich, or were there other, less-obvious elements at work that allowed this to happen? Kennedy also looks at similarities to America’s position of unpreparedness and makes astute observations about the implications involved.
This re-publication of the classic book contains excerpts from the foreword to the 1940 original edition by Henry R. Luce, an American magazine magnate during that era; the foreword to the 1961 edition, also written by Luce; and a new foreword by Stephen C. Schlesinger, written in 2015.
- Provides fascinating insights into the young mind and worldview of then-Harvard senior John F. Kennedy via his thesis, for which he'd toured Europe, the Balkans, the Soviet Union, and Czechoslovakia in the late 1930s
- Presents both a pointed indictment of British policy leading up to World War II as well as an examination of the weaknesses, merits, and pitfalls for democratic governments based on capitalist economies
- Features a new foreword written by Stephen C. Schlesinger, senior fellow at the Century Foundation in New York; author of Act of Creation: The Founding of The United Nations, winner of the 2004 Harry S. Truman Book Award; former director of the World Policy Institute at the New School (1997–2006); and former publisher of the magazine The World Policy Journal