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ANTH 3370 3.0: POWER & VIOLENCE: THE MAKING OF MODERNITY

ANTH 3370 3.0: POWER & VIOLENCE: THE MAKING OF MODERNITY

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AP/ANTH 3370 3.00

POWER & VIOLENCE: THE MAKING OF MODERNITY

This course will examine the place of organized political violence in the making of the most recent widespread, large-scale dominant social system: "modernity". During its making there has been a massive and unprecedented proliferation of organized violence within and between different groups, peoples, and states. But, even as this pattern is increasingly "globalized" and "normalized", it is deeply uneven in its sources and its causes, in its proliferation and its uses, and in its effects.

The first premise of the course is that if there is to be any understanding of this increasing proliferation and use of organized political violence in the historical making of our contemporary world, we need to enquire into three fundamental aspects of "violence" as a dimension of power: First, into ideologies of violence.

Second, the social and cultural organization of violence - i.e., how violence is "embedded" in everyday social relationships and practices as well as in certain specialized institutions.

Finally, the increasing incorporation of violence through the development and use of extreme forms of "technologies of destruction."

A second premise of the course is that if there is to be any potential resolution of the problems which the proliferation and use of organized violence generates, then attention must also be paid to the existence of "non-violent" ideologies, social organization, and "patterns of reconciliation" – even if these exist in only limited ways and contexts within these contemporary socio-cultural "life-forms".

Format: Three seminar hours

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