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First-year West Point cadets will be required to read Angelo State professor's book

"Military Service and American Democracy: From World War II to the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars," will be required reading for first-year cadets.
Credit: Angelo State University

SAN ANGELO, Texas — “Military Service and American Democracy: From World War II to the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars,” a book published by Dr. William A. Taylor, Angelo State University global security studies faculty, has been selected as required reading for every first-year cadet at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, beginning in the fall.

According to a release from Angelo State, Taylor’s book is one of five required texts for approximately 1,200 cadets per year in West Point’s new core course, History 101 The Army of the Republic: Leading Citizen Soldiers.

The course description on West Point's website says the course will “explore the Army’s history in its social, political, and cultural contexts. Particular emphasis will be placed on changing patterns of military service, the evolution of American military leadership, West Point’s role in developing a professional officer corps, the variety of the Army’s missions, the citizens’ view of the Army, and the Army’s place in a diverse citizen population.”

The book was originally published in 2016 and the publisher released a new paperback edition this summer to meet the additional demand at West Point, according to the release.

Taylor’s other books include:

  • “George C. Marshall and the Early Cold War: Policy, Politics, and Society” (2020)
  • “Contemporary Security Issues in Africa” (2019)
  • “Every Citizen a Soldier: The Campaign for Universal Military Training after World War II” (2014), which won a 2015 Crader Family Book Prize Honorable Mention

An associate professor of global security studies, Taylor holds the Lee Drain Endowed University Professorship and previously chaired the ASU Department of Security Studies and Criminal Justice, doubling as director of ASU's Kay Bailey Hutchison Center for Security Studies. He is also an editor for the new book series, “Studies in Civil-Military Relations,” with University Press of Kansas.

After graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy with honors and distinction, Taylor participated in the Navy’s highly selective voluntary graduate education program, through which he earned a master’s degree in history from the University of Maryland. He also completed a master’s degree in security studies at Georgetown University, graduating with honors, as well as master’s and doctoral degrees in history from George Washington University.

Taylor maintains research interests in civil-military relations, military service, security studies, military history, grand strategy and defense policy. He has contributed to 20 other books and has published 80 reference articles and book reviews, the release said.

In addition to his academic credentials, Taylor served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps for more than six years, holding posts in III Marine Expeditionary Force, Expeditionary Force Development Center and Marine Corps Combat Development Command.