Summary of Sun Tzu's Art of War

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Sun Tzu's Art of War book summary


7 Overall

9 Applicability

4 Innovation

6 Style


Sun Tzu was ancient China’s most renowned general. His classic text on strategy survived through the centuries and is still as applicable to war, politics and economics today as it was when Sun Tzu first drafted it. Many translations of Sun Tzu’s manuscript are available, but this one is both attractive and focused. General Tao Hanzhang supplements the actual text with his commentary. Since he spent his entire professional life as a soldier, his interpretation makes Sun Tzu’s guidance more applicable to contemporary situations. Thoughtful questions follow each brief chapter in this pocket-sized book. Though many readers have determined that aspects of this work are highly useful in business, some may find that translating military strategy to corporate life is too laborious, or may feel that Sun Tzu focuses their attention on conflict between businesses without addressing production issues or consumer needs. getAbstract thus recommends this immortal title to patient readers and to those interested in strategy in the broadest sense.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How the ancient principles of warfare apply to modern strategic thinking;
  • How to plan for battle;
  • How to emerge victorious in conflict; and
  • Why espionage is often an important tactic.

About the Author

General Tao Hanzhang is a senior officer in the People’s Liberation Army of China and a senior advisor at the Beijing Institute for International Strategic Studies.



The Fundamentals of War
War is immensely important to a state. When you fight, the existence of your country is at stake. Your future depends on the results of that conflict. A few core ideas should govern your initial thoughts about whether to go to war or not: First, is your country ...

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    Satish Gaire 3 years ago
    Good summary - I have read the full book few years back but great to review it
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    Scot Walker 4 years ago
    Very clear and concise and makes a good case for reading this book.

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