AUTHORMenand, Louis
TITLEFat Man: Herman Kahn and the Nuclear Age
PERIODICAL TITLEThe New Yorker
DATE PUBLISHED2005
VOLUME NUMBERn/a
ISSUE NUMBER27 June
PAGE NUMBERS92-98
ISSN0028-792X


This article describes the life, opinions, and in particular the writings of (and about) nuclear theorist Herman Kahn. The article examines Kahn’s viewpoint and beliefs within the framework of the general mindset that prevailed among the employees of the RAND Corporation, the research arm of the U.S. Air Force, where Kahn worked on nuclear war plans and analysis during the Cold War. In addition to discussing various books and articles written about Kahn, the article focuses on Kahn’s 1960 book On Thermonuclear War. The main assertions of his book are explained, including his argument that the results of nuclear war must be considered bearable by the American people to give any force to the U.S. nuclear policy of deterrence. Also mentioned in the article are Kahn’s support of civil defense measures, his influence on the movie Dr. Strangelove, and his later writings.


Find in a Library with

creative commons - some rights reserved
This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons License.