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Author's Biography

Lynn Eden is Senior Research Scholar (Emeritus), at Stanford University and an affiliate of the Center for International Security and Cooperation, Freeman Spogli Institute, Stanford University. Her Ph.D. is in sociology from the University of Michigan; she works at the intersections of history, sociology, and political science. From 1990 to 2016 Eden was a senior research scholar at the Center for International Security & Cooperation (CISAC), in the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University. From 2002 to 2016, she was also the associate director for research at CISAC. Eden has written on U.S politics, nuclear arms control, and U.S. foreign and military policy. Her first book, Crisis in Watertown, written when she was an undergraduate (University of Michigan Press, 1973), was a finalist for a National Book Award. Her book Whole World on Fire: Organizations, Knowledge, and Nuclear Weapons Devastation (Cornell University Press, 2004) won the American Sociological Association’s 2004 Robert K. Merton award for best book in science and technology studies. Eden also ghosted a book on the 1964 Klan murders of civil rights workers Schwerner, Cheney, and Goodman in Philadelphia, Mississippi. She has co-edited two books on U.S. military, arms control, and nuclear policy; along with articles, book reviews, etc. Using historical documents and personal interviews, Eden is currently writing about how U.S. military officers (nuclear “targeteers”) follow higher-level guidance to develop operational plans to “prevail” in nuclear war. In other words, how are good moral people able to plan the end of the world as we know it? Without denying the conceptual framework of deterrence, Eden argues that the answer lies in:• specific organizational routines;• abstractions based in physics, engineering, and materials science;• social psychological processes similar to (but not exactly) denial; and• jokes and humor.

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