Identity and Violence: The Illusion of Destiny

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Penguin Books India, 2007 - Political Science - 215 pages
2 Reviews
Sen argues in his new book that conflict and violence are sustained today, no less than the past, by the illusion of a unique identity. Indeed, the world is increasingly taken to be divided between religions (or 'cultures' or 'civilizations'), ignoring the relevance of other ways in which people see themselves through class, gender, profession, language, literature, science, music, morals or politics, and denying the real possibilities of reasoned choices. In Identity and Violencehe overturns such stereotypes as the 'the monolithic Middle East' or 'the Western Mind'. Through his penetrating investigation of such subjects as multiculturalism, fundamentalism, terrorism and globalization, he brings out the need for a clear-headed understanding of human freedom and a constructive public voice in Global civil society. The world, Sen shows, can be made to move towards peace as firmly as it has recently spiralled towards war.
 

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User Review  - kant1066 - LibraryThing

This book is interested in the question of human identity, its inherent multiplicity, and the choices that we make in regard to aligning ourselves with certain identities over others. We all have ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Mandarinate - LibraryThing

Sen's point is that conflict is reduced when we recognize that individuals can hold multiple identities. It's a good point, but rather obvious in today's world of large scale immigration. Unfortunately, Sen does not pursue his idea very far so the book is pretty uninteresting. Read full review

Contents

CHAPTER The Violence of Illusion
1
CHAPTER Making Sense of Identity
18
CHAPTER Civilizational Confinement
40
CHAPTER Religious Affiliations
59
CHAPTER West and AntiWest
84
CHAPTER Culture and Captivity
103
CHAPTER Globalization and Voice
120
CHAPTER Multiculturalism and Freedom
149
CHAPTER Freedom to Think
170
87
187
Names Index I 99
199
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About the author (2007)

Amartya Sen is one of the world's leading public intellectuals. He is Professor of Economics and Professor of Philosophy at Harvard. He was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, from 1998 to 2004, and won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1998. His many celebrated books include Development as Freedom (1999), The Argumentative Indian (2005) and The Idea of Justice (2010). They have been translated into more than 30 languages.

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