CULTURES OF VIOLENCE (SOC 290)

While nothing is easier than to denounce the evildoer, nothing is more difficult than to understand him.

—Fyodor Dostoevsky

The choice today is no longer between violence and nonviolence. It is either nonviolence or nonexistence.

—Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.


Street gangs and warfare. Police brutality and genocide. Domestic abuse and riots. What are the dynamics underlying these and other forms of violence? What do they have in common? How do they differ? This course takes violence in its many forms as a topic for sociological analysis. With this in mind, we will compare different theoretical perspectives on violence and conflict, such as biological, psychological, social psychological, and socio-cultural perspectives.

Topics Included:

  • Introduction to Violence
  • Theories of Violence
  • Gender & Violence
  • Creating a Killer
  • Intergroup Conflict
  • Aggression & Obedience to Authority
  • Institutional Violence & Police Brutality
  • Sexual Abuse Within the Catholic Church
  • Collective Violence: Crowds, Lynchings, Riots, & Mass Suicide
  • A Micro-Interactional Analysis of Violent Behavior
  • Seminar Discussion: Code of the Street
  • Hate Crime
  • Systems of Domestic Violence
  • Cultural Extinction
  • Economic Violence
  • Political Systems & the Military-Industrial Complex
  • Terrorism
  • Cultural Fascination and Violence
  • The Culture of Fear
  • Seminar Discussion: Rampage: The Social Roots of School Shootings
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply