Perpetrator Studies Network


15 November 2022

Launch of Jonathan Leader Maynard’s Ideology and Mass Killing

Launch of Jonathan Leader Maynard’s Ideology and Mass Killing

We are excited to announce the first event in our 2022/23 PSN New Books in Perpetrator Studies Series: on 15 November 2022 at 14.00 CET we will launch Jonathan Leader Maynard’s Ideology and Mass Killing: The Radicalized Security Politics of Genocides and Deadly Atrocities (Oxford University Press, 2022).

The book explores the role of ideology in ‘mass killings’ such as genocides and state terrors, offering a novel comparative theory of the ideological foundation of large-scale political violence. The book advances a ‘neo-ideological’ perspective that challenges the two prevailing scholarly viewpoints to the matter, which look at ideological conviction as either a primary driver of mass violence or as inconsequential compared to factors such as rational self-interest and social pressure. Through a detailed examination of four contrasting cases of mass killing, Maynard showcases how the key ideological foundations of mass killings lie in radicalized versions of conventional ideas that underpin the politics of security in ordinary societies, rather than in overtly political goals. The book is the first volume to offer a dedicated, comparative theory of ideology’s role in mass killing, while also developing a powerful new account of how ideology affects violence and politics more generally.

The respondents will be Hollie Nyseth Nzitatira and Alexander Bellamy.

The event will be moderated by Tim Williams.

This event will take place online, on Zoom. Please register via this link:

This series is organised by Susanne Knittel and Timothy Williams.