List of books with anti-war themes

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Books with anti-war themes have explicit anti-war messages or have been described as having significant anti-war themes or sentiments. Not all of these books have a direct connection to any particular anti-war movement. The list includes fiction and non-fiction, and books for children and younger readers.



Anthologies of anti-war writing[edit]

  • Instead of Violence: Writings by the Great Advocates of Peace and Nonviolence throughout History – edited by Arthur Weinberg and Lila Shaffer Weinberg, 1963[18][35]
  • The Pacifist Conscience – edited by Peter Mayer, 1966[18]
  • Peace is the Way: writings on nonviolence from the Fellowship of Reconciliation – edited by Walter Wink[36]
  • We Who Dared to Say No to War: American Antiwar Writing from 1812 to Now – Murray Polner, Thomas Woods, 2008

Juvenile fiction[edit]

Juvenile non-fiction[edit]

  • Ain't Gonna Study War No More: The Story of America's Peace Seekers – Milton Meltzer, 2002
  • Lines in the Sand: New Writing on War and Peace – Hoffman and Lassister, eds. essays, stories, poems, 2003
  • A Little Peace – Barbara Kerley, 2007
  • Operation Warhawks: How Young People Become Warriors – Terrence Webster-Doyle, 1993
  • Paths to Peace: People Who Changed the World – Jane Breskin Zalben, 2004
  • Peace One Day – Jeremy Gilley, 2005
  • Some Reasons for War: How Families, Myths and Warfare Are Connected – Sue Mansfield, 1988

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Mary Butts...produced an extraordinary and now almost forgotten novel, Ashe of Rings (1926), which combines the Supernatural, both benign and malevolent, with a strong anti-war message."F. Hammill, A. Sponenberg, E. Miskimmin, Encyclopedia of British Women’s Writing 1900–1950. Springer, 2006. ISBN 0230379478, (p.295)
  2. ^ "More explicitly pacifist examples include...Hilda Doolittle's Bid Me To Live". "World War One Writing", in Faye Hammill, Esme Miskimmin, Ashlie Sponenberg (eds.) An Encyclopedia of British Women's Writing 1900–1950. Palgrave, 2008 ISBN 0-230-22177-7 (p. 295).
  3. ^ Cynthia Wachwell, War No More: The Antiwar Impulse in American Literature, 1861–1914. Louisiana State University Press 2010, ISBN 0-8071-3562-3 (pp. 163-66).
  4. ^ "Among Crosby's numerous anti-imperialist writings was the delightful, satirical novel Captain Jinks, Hero published in 1902..."Philip S. Foner, The Spanish-Cuban-American War and the Birth of American Imperialism Vol. 2: 1898–1902. NYU Press, 1972. ISBN 0853452679 (p. 590)
  5. ^ a b Vincent B. Sherry, The Cambridge companion to the literature of the First World War. Cambridge University Press, 2005 ISBN 0-521-82145-2 (p.102)
  6. ^ Angela K. Smith (2000). The Second Battlefield: Women, Modernism and the First World War. Manchester University Press. p. 155. ISBN 978-0-7190-5301-6.
  7. ^ Despised and Rejected was banned by the British Government shortly after publication. See John Sloan (June 2004). "A War of Individuals: Bloomsbury Attitudes to the Great War by Jonathan Atkin". The Review of English Studies 55 (220): 478–480. doi:10.1093/res/55.220.478. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
  8. ^ "Looking Good: Book Four of Difficulty at the Beginning". 5 October 2011.
  9. ^ "Lyndon Johnson and the Majorettes: Book Three of Difficulty at the Beginning". 5 October 2011.
  10. ^ "T.H. White declared the theme of his Arthurian fantasy, The Once and Future King written for the most part between 1938 and 1941, was to find "an antidote to war"". Tom Shippey, "Fantasy" in The Oxford Companion to English Literature edited by Margaret Drabble. Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2006. ISBN 978-0-19-861453-1 (p.351).
  11. ^ "During World War One Burdekin worked as a VAD nurse, an experience which inspired her sixth novel, the vigorously anti-war Quiet Ways." F. Hammill, A. Sponenberg, E. Miskimmin, Encyclopedia of British Women’s Writing 1900–1950. Springer, 2006. ISBN 0230379478(p.34)
  12. ^ "Henri Barbusse, the author of the internationally famed anti-war novel Le Feu (Under Fire)"... Alan Kramer, Dynamic of Destruction : Culture and Mass Killing in the First World War Oxford University Press, 2007 ISBN 0-19-151668-6 (p. 237).
  13. ^ "Karinthy, as a pacifist, is very bitter about the war...In asides Karithy expresses horror at the war, damning both Central Powers and Allies". "Voyage to Faremido and Capillaria" in E. F. Bleiler and Richard Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years. Kent State University Press, 1990. (pp. 400-401). ISBN 978-0-87338-416-2.
  14. ^ Darko Suvin describes War with the Newts as "the pioneer of all anti-fascist and anti-militarist SF". Suvin, "Capek, Karel" in Twentieth-Century Science-Fiction Writers by Curtis C. Smith. St. James Press, 1986, ISBN 0-912289-27-9 (p.842-4).
  15. ^ "The Wars is an anti-war novel". "Author uses fiction to show horrors of First World War".The Leader-Post, November 15, 1977 (p.47).
  16. ^ "We That Were Young...[its] protagonist, Joan, loses her lover and brother in the war, undertakes vengeful service in a munitions factory, and finally converts to pacifism". Ashlie Sponenberg "Rathbone, Irene" in Faye Hammill, Esme Miskimmin, Sponenberg (eds.) An Encyclopedia of British Women's Writing 1900–1950. London, Palgrave, 2008 ISBN 0-230-22177-7 (pp. 198–199).
  17. ^ "...his final excursion into visionary fiction...was Why Was I Killed?, an after-death fantasy on a pacifist theme". Michael Moorcock, "Introduction" to The Aerodrome by Rex Warner. Vintage Classics, 2007. ISBN 978-0-09-951156-4 (pp. ix-xx)
  18. ^ a b c d e Robert A Seeley. "Further Reading", in The Handbook of non-violence, Including Aldous Huxley’s "An Encyclopedia of pacifism". Westport, Conn. : L. Hill; Great Neck, N.Y., Lakeville Press, 1986. ISBN 0-88208-208-6 (pp. 333-334).
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Martin Ceadel,"Selected Bibliography", in Pacifism in Britain, 1914–1945 : the defining of a faith. Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1980. ISBN 0-19-821882-6 (pp. 323-333).
  20. ^ "Anti-war Book May Offend" (Review of The Causes of World War Three) Reading Eagle - December 7, 1958 (p. 52)
  21. ^ a b Ben Lowe, Imagining peace: a history of early English pacifist ideas, 1340–1560.Penn State Press, 1997 ISBN 0-271-01689-2 (pp. 163-64).
  22. ^ Peter Van Den Dungen, "Jacob ter Meulen and Bart de Ligt as Pioneers of Peace History" in Harvey L. Dyck, The Pacifist Impulse in Historical Perspective. Toronto, University of Toronto Press, 1996. ISBN 0-8020-0777-5 (pp. 52-72)
  23. ^ "In 1922 C.E. Montague's Disenchantment began the flood of anti-war accounts by former soldiers..." Philip Towle, Democracy and peace making : negotiations and debates, 1815-1973. London : Routledge, 2000. ISBN 9780415214711 (p. 106).
  24. ^ Toibin, Colm (March 23, 2008). "Their Vilest Hour". The New York Times. Retrieved May 20, 2010.
  25. ^ "If the War Goes On: Herman Hesse's writing against war". The Village Voice, June 17, 1971 (p. 35).
  26. ^ "When antiwar commemorative demonstrations took place all over Germany during the 1924 anniversary year, Friedrich published War Against War in Berlin with text and captions in four languages".Dora Apel,"Cultural Battlegrounds: Weimar Photographic Narratives of War". New German Critique No. 76, (Winter, 1999) (pp. 49-84)
  27. ^ Review of War Against War! Steve Andrew, The Morning Star, 4 August 2014. Retrieved 17 August 2014.
  28. ^ "Jill Liddington's The Long Road to Greenham, for example, which examines women's pacifism from 1820 to the 1980s...." Heloise Brown, The Truest Form of Patriotism: Pacifist Feminism in Britain, 1870-1902, Manchester University Press, 2013. ISBN 9781847795762.
  29. ^ "In Newer Ideals of Peace (1907) she added that social sentiments “must be enlightened, disciplined and directed by the fullest knowledge". The latter book was her plea for a civilized alternative to war". Gary J Dorrien, Social Ethics in the Making : interpreting an American tradition. Malden, MA : Wiley-Blackwell, 2009. ISBN 978-1-4051-8687-2 (p. 177).
  30. ^ "As always with Macdonald, honesty won out (one almost adds, alas) and the "inside" political discussion reached its climax with his essay "The Root Is Man," in which he arrived at a kind of anarcho-pacifism based on an absolutist morality." Irving Howe, Selected Writings, 1950–1990 Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1990 ISBN 0-15-180390-0 (p. 257).
  31. ^ a b c "For clues about how to save the planet from nuclear extinction, there is no better place to turn than to Lawrence S. Wittner's monumental three-volume study of the world disarmament movement from 1945 to the present...His first volume, One World or None, goes through 1953. Volume Two, Resisting the Bomb, takes us from 1954 through 1970. And his third and final volume, Toward Nuclear Abolition, just completed last year, brings it all up to the present". Matthew Rothschild, "Nuclear Alert", in The Progressive, March 1, 2004.
  32. ^ The making of a peacenik Mark Bostridge, The Guardian August 30, 2003. Retrieved January 18 2012.
  33. ^ "In Three Guineas (1938), arguing the case for the end of sexual discrimination against women and against war, Woolf insists on the need for women to have the same work opportunities as men". Harold Bloom,Virginia Woolf, Infobase Publishing, 2009 ISBN 1-4381-1548-2 (p. 87).
  34. ^ "Based on over 200 personal testimonies from the Imperial War Museum’s oral history collection, Voices Against War is a fascinating and lively survey of anti-war protest in the UK from 1914 to the present day." Ian Sinclair, Review of Voices Against War, Peace News, February 2010. Retrieved February 2013.
  35. ^ "A rare instance in which Newer Ideals of Peace has been anthologized is the inclusion of a brief excerpt from [Jane] Addams' chapter "The Passing of the War Virtues" in a collection edited by Arthur Weinberg and Lila Weinberg, Instead of Violence: Writings by the Great Advocates of Peace and Nonviolence throughout History… "Introduction" to Jane Addams, Newer Ideals of Peace, edited by Berenice A Carroll and Clinton F Fink Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2007, ISBN 0-252-03105-9 (p. lv).
  36. ^ Dan Buchanan, "Peace is the Way: Writings on Nonviolence from the Fellowship of Reconciliation (Review)". Sojourners Magazine. January 1, 2001
  37. ^ ""Children of the Book" (1982) describes the siege of Vienna of 1682 through the eyes of a janizary, a Polish youth, and the daughter of a burgher of Vienna; it is a powerful novel, anti-war, showing subtly the decline of the warring regimes, Polish knights and Ottoman janizaries, and the survival of the burgher". Obituary: Peter Carter by Elizabeth Hodgkin, The Independent, 24 August 1999. Retrieved 8 April 2013.
  38. ^ "...Myers' latest novel, Sunrise Over Fallujah...He acknowledges that it probably will be read as an anti-war novel, although, "I don't agree with those who say the war was an horrendous idea from the start." "The Somber Realities of War Cross Generations in Myers' 'Sunrise'". USA Today, 23rd April 2008. Retrieved 7th March 2017.