Thinking beyond the Books: Sociological Biases of Our Military Institutions


Professional military reading lists have expanded in recent years so that now nearly every senior organizational seat or position presents some recommended series of books or articles. As institutions, most militaries have reading lists for various groups and audiences as a means of fostering professional development and improving organizational knowledge. This article focuses on the American military (US Air Force and US Army) since that institution continues to exert significant international influence across the greater military profession. For the Air Force and Army, diverse reading lists tend to encourage positive narratives on academic development with subtle additional devices designed for nurturing a particular institutional legacy.

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