total war

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total war

the form of modern warfare in which whole populations may be subject to mobilization either as soldiers or as labour, and in which whole populations are regarded as legitimate targets. Air warfare is a significant feature of modern warfare compared with the more limited conventional warfare of previous eras. However, the onset of mass CITIZENSHIP, and nationalist ideologies and citizen armies is equally significant.

Total War


an imperialist war that subordinates to its own interests the entire life and economy of a nation, using the crudest means to defeat and destroy both the armed forces and the civilian population of the enemy. The theory of total war was first set forth in 1935 by the German general E. Ludendorff. It became the basis of fascist Germany’s doctrine of war and was applied by the fascist Germans during World War II.

References in periodicals archive ?
In keeping with Kirby and Marryat's emphasis on the building of a replica Britain in the new world, the frontier environment is less attractive in Henry Ancrum and Amongst the Maoris than in War to the Knife.
As in War to the Knife, Wisniowski's New Zealand is romanticised and exotic, an 'enchanting place', full of 'cabbage trees, mountains and volcanoes', 'gushing' waters, 'luxuriant' vegetation, and 'primeval forest[s]' (p.
These departures work in the opposite way to the departures in War to the Knife and Henry Ancrum, with the non-British protagonists of Wisniowski's novel leaving to escape from the 'gaucherie of colonial Anglo-Saxon life'.
Once again it is in Boldrewood's War to the Knife that these tensions are most polarised.
The Maoris in War to the Knife (1899) offered him this opportunity.
Yet, while Boldrewood has respect for Maori as 'a noble, aristocratic race whose existence is threatened by the intrusion of modern culture', War to the Knife remains 'grounded in his belief in the superiority of the Anglo-Saxon type'.