What We Talk About When We Talk About War and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
CDN$ 15.64
  • List Price: CDN$ 24.95
  • You Save: CDN$ 9.31 (37%)
FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25.
Only 3 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
Gift-wrap available.
What We Talk About When W... has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

What We Talk About When We Talk About War Paperback – Apr 6 2012

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
CDN$ 15.64
CDN$ 15.64 CDN$ 3.95

Frequently Bought Together

What We Talk About When We Talk About War + Warrior Nation: Rebranding Canada in an Age of Anxiety + Canada and Conflict
Price For All Three: CDN$ 44.77

Buy the selected items together

Product Details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Goose Lane Editions; First Edition edition (April 6 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0864926227
  • ISBN-13: 978-0864926227
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.3 x 20.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 476 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #121,774 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


“A book worthy of joining some of the greatest examinations of human behaviour.” — Alex Davis, espritdecorps.ca (20120424)

“Definitely a book that will get people talking and turn a few heads, I couldn't recommend it more.” — Alex Davis, espritdecorps.ca (20120424)

“The book offers considerable meat to chew. . . . I can’t agree with all of Richler’s analysis, but I am grateful he has raised some important issues that have not been, but should have been, fully debated in Parliament and in the rest of the country this past decade.” — Paul Gessell, The Ottawa Citizen (20120509)


"This is a book of enormous erudition. I am stunned by Richler's courage and insight. He dares to take on the pathology orchestrated by the military apologists in our political, academic and media establishment; debunking it, dismembering it, eviscerating it. Rarely does someone of letters take on such a subject and convey the argument with such force and clarity. There's no question that the apologists will have exquisite apoplexy, but surely that's the ultimate tribute. The rest of us will exult in his embrace of the values of peace and decency, in a Canada that once was and might yet be again." — Stephen Lewis, former Canadian Ambassador to the U.N. (2012-05-09)|"Since May 2nd, 2011, Canadians have watched their country swerve from the middle lane to the far right. A country once proud of its role as a peace-making moderate is being reconstructed as a Canada defined by war, violence and death. Noah Richler has taken the trouble to tell us why Canadians should worry." — Desmond Morton, author of Who Speaks for Canada? (2012-05-09)|"Well-written and passionate, this is a fine polemic about important issues. You don't have to agree with everything Noah Richler says — I don't — but you must take him seriously." — Margaret MacMillan, author of Paris 1919 (2012-05-09)|"In a way that is utterly free of jingoism, What We Talk About When We Talk About War demonstrates that the rabid outpourings of the mid-war years in Afghanistan have been blown away in a gust of Arctic air. A tonic to the spirit, Richler's book explores the rootedness of Canadian values and connects them to the experience of life in an enormous and damn lucky country." — James Laxer, author of Tecumseh and Brock (2012-05-09)|"Noah Richler has written an important book of great clarity, insight and courage. Like George Grant's classic Lament for a Nation, it ranges from politics to philosophy, from literature to the mass media, in support of an intelligent, passionate and highly articulate argument. What We Talk About When We Talk About War deserves to be read and discussed in every political office, classroom, book club and legion hall in the country." — Ron Graham, author of The Last Act (2012-05-09)|"Noah Richler's important book reminds us why it is essential that we question the motives of military missions bathed in slogans. What We Talk About When We Talk About War provides a thorough analysis of our country's myths of combat and of peace and, separating rhetoric from truth, incisively exposes the key players bent on convincing us of the merits of a ‘just' war." — Amy Millan, author of Masters of the Burial (2012-05-09)|"A timely and thought-provoking examination of how we, as a nation, have allowed our perception of ourselves to be changed from peacekeepers to warriors, how the real-life experiences of the monstrous brutality of World War I have become the nation-building myth of today, and how our preference for 'peace, order and good government' has graduated to a willingness to die for the sake of a greater cause. Richler urges us not to ignore these major, unexamined changes in the Canadian narrative lest we are redefined into a people we have never wished to be." — Anna Porter, author of The Ghosts of Europe (2012-05-09)|"The questions Noah Richler's What We Talk About When We Talk About War poses resonate deeply, and while I may not agree with some of his conclusions, Richler offers a compelling perspective and unearths a treasure chest of sources, references and incidents that will richly enhance anybody's quest to affirm what being Canadian really means. This book is a must-read for the aspiring military professional and every citizen who is concerned about perpetuating into the twenty-first century what we understand to be the Canadian Way." — Lt.-Col. (ret) Patrick B. Stogran, PPCLI, Veterans's Ombudsman 2007-2010 (2012-05-09)

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See the customer review
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most helpful customer reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Chris Banner on June 9 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a thought provoking and analytical review of the growing war culture so evident in the remarks and policies of Canada's elected government. Richler's conclusions are startling and take time to digest.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Potty mouth scared me off . . . June 6 2012
By Scobo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bought the Kindle edition. Read 4 pages of introduction and was completely turned off by the gratuitous foul language. This foul language and sexual allusions very likely obscure a promising topic. Too bad! Yes, Martha, people swear, but if writers can really write, they might not stoop and force the reader to scoop. So, after 4 Kindle pages, I requested a refund, and for want of language, a reader (of Noah Richler) is lost. Forever!