This course explores war through some of the best books of theory, fiction, and nonfiction. The purpose of war is to achieve a policy that leads to a better peace after the war's end than the peace that existed before the war began. But the nature of war is to serve itself if policy does not guide and constrain war. This course begins with discussion of the best foundational works of theory to build an understanding of the epistemology of war. The students will subsequently read, analyze, and discuss some of the best works of nonfiction and fiction on bad wars when judged by quality of strategy, magnitude of losses, or duration of fighting. The book subjects range from the American Civil War to the post-9/11 wars. The readings and seminar discussions vary from the reasons why the wars began to the conduct and outcomes of the wars. This course lies at the intersection of international relations, history, and conflict studies. It will increase the students' understanding of how policy, strategy, and war interact. A central aim of this seminar is to improve critical thinking and writing.