This is an assessment of the crucial inteconnections between war, medicine and "modernity". Covering the period from 1870 to 1945, beginning with the Franco-Prussian War and ending with World War II, it spans not only the birth of modern warfare but also one of the most critical periods in the emergence of modern society. Using perspectives from medical history, particularly on the body, disease concepts, the relationship between knowledge and organization and the ideology of management, contributors here demonstrate the importance of the interaction between war and medicine in the development of the modern world. War is not treated as an extraordinary episode distinct from civil life, but as an integral aspect of the making of social modernity. This volume highlights the practice of medicine as a crucial element in the social changes brought about by the conduct of modern warfare. The essays reveal how concepts and practices in military medicine both reflect and influence the prevailing concerns of civilian medicine.