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Perpetrator Studies Network

Books

The Rise of Organised Brutality. A Historical Sociology of Violence

By Siniša Malešević.

Challenging the prevailing belief that organised violence is experiencing historically continuous decline, this book provides an in-depth sociological analysis that shows organised violence is, in fact, on the rise. Malešević demonstrates that violence is determined by organisational capacity, ideological penetration and micro-solidarity, rather than biological tendencies, meaning that despite pre-modern societies being exposed to spectacles of cruelty and torture, such societies had no organisational means to systematically slaughter millions of individuals. Malešević suggests that violence should not be analysed as just an event or process, but also via changing perceptions of those events and processes, and by linking this to broader social transformations on the inter-polity and inter-group levels he makes his key argument that organised violence has proliferated. Focusing on wars, revolutions, genocides and terrorism, this book shows how modern social organisations utilise ideology and micro-solidarity to mobilise public support for mass scale violence.

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