The Art of War is a 6th Century BC Chinese treatise on war and military strategy known for its timeless examples of strategy and planning. There is intense interest in this ancient work since it teaches how to be victorious in conflict and that the final victory ultimately is to see war as an effort to win minds and hearts rather than a mere acquisition of territory and wealth.
The Art of War by Sun Tzu is a two thousand year old work, reputedly authored by a famous military general and strategist who lived in ancient China. Apart from this, he is also revered and respected in many South Asian countries as a learned philosopher. The book is divided into thirteen chapters and there is historical evidence to prove that it was written over a period of time and perhaps with many borrowings and collaborations with other similar works of the period. However, it was also heavily criticized by generations of scholars and thinkers in later centuries as it advocated deception and spying as accepted strategies in war. Many scholars have also doubted whether a figure such as Sun Tzu existed at all and have found several inaccuracies in terms of the timeframe in which the book was supposed to have been written. Many feel that the original work may have undergone several revisions over the centuries before being consolidated in its present form. Whatever the nature of these opinions The Art of War remains a fascinating, valuable and extremely interesting work.
The Art of War provides compelling reading for anyone who is interested in the dynamics of negotiation, competition, mediation, planning and arbitration.