Violence and Democracy
In this provocative book, first published in 2004, John Keane calls for a fresh understanding of the vexed relationship between democracy and violence. Taking issue with the common sense view that 'human nature' is violent, Keane shows why mature democracies do not wage war upon each other, and why they are unusually sensitive to violence. He argues that we need to think more discriminatingly about the origins of violence, its consequences, its uses and remedies. He probes the disputed meanings of the term violence, and asks why violence is the greatest enemy of democracy, and why today's global 'triangle of violence' is tempting politicians to invoke undemocratic emergency powers. Throughout, Keane gives prominence to ethical questions, such as the circumstances in which violence can be justified, and argues that violent behaviour and means of violence can and should be 'democratised' - made publicly accountable to others, so encouraging efforts to erase surplus violence from the world.
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acts of violence Adam Michnik American armed armies audiences barbarism become Bhikhu Parekh body bombs century citizens civil soci civilians civilising process conﬂict crime cruelty death defend deﬁned deﬁnition democratic democratisation despite Détente difﬁcult effects Elias enemy Enzensberger especially essay ethical Europe European fear ﬁeld ﬁgures ﬁnd ﬁre ﬁrst force forms of violence Georg Elser George Orwell Global Civil Society Hannah Arendt human humility images inﬂict institutions Iohn Keane Islam Islamists judgements justiﬁed kill Landmines lence live London means of violence ment military modern moral movement murder non-violent Norbert Elias nuclear weapons ofﬁcials one’s organised paciﬁsm peace Pierre Clastres police political potentially principle publicly accountable Qur’an rape reﬂection Rene Girard rule Rwanda signiﬁcant social Sorel strategy struggle territorial terrorism terrorist tion today’s triangle of violence Umberto Eco uncivil wars victims violated VIOLENCE AND DEMOCRACY York