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Remember when an unattended package was just that, an unattended package? Remember when the airport was a place that evoked magical possibilities, not the anxiety of a full-body scan? In the post-9/11 world, we have become focused on heightened security measures, but do you feel safer? Are you safer?Against Security explains how our anxieties about public safety have translated into command-and-control procedures that annoy, intimidate, and are often counterproductive. Taking readers through varied ambiguously dangerous sites, the prominent urbanist and leading sociologist of the everyday, Harvey Molotch, argues that we can use our existing social relationships to make life safer and more humane.
In this impressive book, Edward S. Herman and David Peterson examine the uses and abuses of the word “genocide.” They argue persuasively that the label is highly politicized and that in the United States it is used by the government, journalists, and academics to brand as evil those nations and political movements that in one way or another interfere with the imperial interests of U.S. capitalism. Thus the word “genocide” is seldom applied when the perpetrators are U.S. allies (or even the United States itself), while it is used almost indiscriminately when murders are committed or are alleged to have been committed by enemies of the United States and U.S
Renowned moral philosopher Jonathan Glover confronts the brutal history of the twentieth century to unravel the mystery of why so many atrocities occurred. In a new preface, Glover brings the book through the post-September 11 era and into our own time—and asks whether humankind can "weaken the grip war has on us."
This comprehensive text analyzes significant revolutions of the 20th and 21st centuries, placing them in social, economic, and political context.
Concern about violence on television has been publicly debated for the past 50 years. TV violence has repeatedly been identified as a significant causal agent in relation to the prevalence of crime and violence in society. Critics have accused the medium of presenting excessive quantities of violence, to the point where it is virtually impossible for viewers to avoid it.This book presents the findings of the largest British study of violence on TV ever undertaken, funded by the broadcasting industry.
A ground breaking study of extralegal violence that considers the changing meaning and use of the term lynching throughout American history.
What might you have done if you had been caught up in the Holocaust? In My Lai? In Rwanda? Confronted with acts of violence and evil on scales grand and small, we ask ourselves, baffled, how such horrors can happen – how human beings seemingly like ourselves can commit such atrocities. The answer, I. W. Charny suggests in this important new work, may be found in each one of us, in the different and distinct ways in which we organize our minds. An internationally recognized scholar of the psychology of violence, Charny defines two paradigms of mental organization, the democratic and the fascist, and shows how these systems can determine behavior in intimate relationships, social situations, and events of global significance.
Racial Spectacles: Explorations in Media, Race, and Justice examines the crucial role the media has played in circulating and shaping national dialogues about race through representations of crime and racialized violence. Jonathan Markovitz argues that mass media "racial spectacles" often work to shore up racist stereotypes, but that they also provide opportunities to challenge prevalent conceptions of race, and can be seized upon as vehicles for social protest. This book explores a series of mass media spectacles revolving around the news, prime-time television, Hollywood cinema, and the internet that have either relied upon, reconfigured, or helped to construct collective memories of race, crime, and (in)justice.
Historian Eliza Earle Ferguson’s meticulously researched study of domestic violence among the working class in France uncovers the intimate details of daily life and the complex workings of court proceedings in fin-de-siècle Paris.With detective-like methods, Ferguson pores through hundreds of court records to understand why so many perpetrators of violent crime were fully acquitted. She finds that court verdicts depended on community standards for violence between couples. Her search uncovers voluminous testimony from witnesses, defendants, and victims documenting the conflicts and connections among men and women who struggled to balance love, desire, and economic need in their relationships.F
Starting in the late 1960s, the United States suffered the biggest rise in violent crime in its history. Aside from the movement for black civil rights, it is difficult to think of a phenomenon that had a more profound effect on American life in the last third of the 20th century. Fear of murder, rape, robbery and assault influenced decisions on where to live and where to school one’s children, how to commute to work and where to spend one’s leisure time. In some locales, people dreaded leaving their homes at any time, day or night, and many Americans spent part of each day literally looking over their shoulders.T
In Frames of War, Judith Butler explores the media’s portrayal of state violence, a process integral to the way in which the West wages modern war. This portrayal has saturated our understanding of human life, and has led to the exploitation and abandonment of whole peoples, who are cast as existential threats rather than as living populations in need of protection. These people are framed as already lost, to imprisonment, unemployment and starvation, and can easily be dismissed. In the twisted logic that rationalizes their deaths, the loss of such populations is deemed necessary to protect the lives of ‘the living.’
The classic opening scene of 2001, A Space Odyssey shows an ape-man wreaking havoc with humanity’s first invention–a bone used as a weapon to kill a rival. It’s an image that fits well with popular notions of our species as inherently violent, with the idea that humans are–and always have been–warlike by nature. But as Douglas P. Fry convincingly argues in Beyond War, the facts show that our ancient ancestors were not innately warlike–and neither are we.Fry points out that, for perhaps ninety-nine percent of our history, for well over a million years, humans lived in nomadic hunter-and-gatherer groups, egalitarian bands where generosity was highly valued and warfare was a rarity.
In December 1968 two girls who lived next door to each other – Mary, aged eleven, and Norma, thirteen – stood before a criminal court in Newcastle, accused of strangling two little boys; Martin Brown, four years old, and Brian Howe, three. Norma was acquitted. Mary Bell, the younger but infinitely more sophisticated and cooler of the two, was found guilty of manslaughter. She evaded being branded as a murderer due to what the court ruled as ‘diminished responsibility’, but she was sentenced to ‘detention’ for life.
This book examines African Americans’ strategies for resisting white racial violence from the Civil War until the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1968 and up to the Clinton era. Christopher Waldrep’s semi-biographical approach to the pioneers in the anti-lynching campaign portrays African Americans as active participants in the effort to end racial violence rather than as passive victims. In telling this more than 100-year-old story of violence and resistance, Waldrep describes how white Americans legitimized racial violence after the Civil War, and how black journalists campaigned against the violence by invoking the Constitution and the law as a source of rights.
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