About the Author

Historian Christopher Hamner teaches at George Mason University, serves as Editor-in-Chief of Papers of the War Department, 1784-1800, and is the author of Enduring Battle: American Soldiers in Three Wars, 1776-1945.

The Atomic Bomb: Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Secondary Sources

Boyer, Paul. By the Bomb’s Early Light: American Thought and Culture at the Dawn of the Atomic Age. New York: Pantheon, 1984. An in-depth examination of America’s struggles to deal with the political implications of atomic weapons in the years immediately following the end of World War II.

Dower, John. War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War. New York: Pantheon, 1986. An insightful examination of the patterns of racism that permeated both American and Japanese attitudes during the Pacific war, it helps explain many of the patterns of brutality that characterized that theater.

Hersey, John. Hiroshima. New York: Knopf, 1946. A year after the atomic bombings, Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Hersey collected the firsthand accounts of the attacks and their aftermath. The book remains a searing and valuable look at the bomb’s effects on the ground.

Linenthal, Edward T., and Tom Engelhardt. History Wars: The Enola Gay and Other Battles for the American Past. New York: Henry Holt, 1996. A collection of essays that deals with the fallout from the planned 50th-anniversary exhibit at the National Air and Space Museum, and its implications for America’s efforts to understand its own past.

Spector, Ronald. Eagle Against the Sun: The American War with Japan. New York: Free Press, 1985. The best single-volume examination of World War II in the Pacific, it provides detailed analysis of the four-year conflict that culminated in the atomic bombings.