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Violence and Nonviolence

Pathways to Understanding

Gregg Barak Eastern Michigan University
© 2003   360 pages   SAGE Publications, Inc   
Complimentary Review Copy
Available on CourseSmart Course Smart
Individual Purchasers
Paperback ISBN: 9780761926962 $79.00
Hardcover ISBN: 9780761926955 $118.00
INTRODUCTION - Secrets of Violence and Nonviolence
Decreasing Violence and Increasing Nonviolence
Feelings and Structures
Private and Public Shame
A Germ Theory of Violence and Nonviolence
Violent and Nonviolent Rhetoric, Youth at Risk, and Implications for Peacemaking
Violence Against Youth Is More Important Than Violence by Youth
Organization of the Book
Chapter One: Violence in Perspective
Sanctioned and Unsanctioned Violence: An Alternative Perspective
Violence as an Integral Part of American Life
American Violence in Historical Perspective
American Violence in Contemporary Perspective
American Violence in Comparative Perspective
A Reciprocal Approach to Studying Violence
Review Questions
Chapter Two: Interpersonal Violence
Box 2.1 Harrassment and Silence
Box 2.2 Serial Killer
Box 2.3 Retaliatory Bombing
Box 2.4 Homosexual Panic Leading to Murder
Box 2.5 Rape and Homicide
Box 2.6 Situated Transactions
Box 2.7 Altruisitic Killings
Box 2.8 Motherhood and Mental Illness
Juvenile Victimization
Box 2.9 Homosexual Juvenile Homicide
Box 2.10 College Murder
Box 2.11 High School Homicide
Box 2.12 The Smiling Gunman
Physical and Sexual Child Abuse
Box 2.13 Rapist Returns
Box 2.14 Elder Rape and Murder
Review Questions
Chapter Three: Institutional Violence
Box 3.1 Rampage in Central Park
Box 3.2 The Hamburg Riot, 1876 Supremacy (2000)
Box 3.3 The Birmingham Church Bombing, 1963
Family Violence
Box 3.4 "Silence Ending About Abuse in Gay Relationships"
Childhood Maltreatment
School Violence
Box 3.5 Youth Sports and Violence
Gang Violence
Box 3.6 Do or Die
Police and Penal Violence
Box 3.7 Police Torture
Box 3.8 The Rampart Scandal
Box 3.9 New Jersey Turnpike Shootings
Box 3.10 Private Youth Prisons
Box 3.11 Danger on Death Row
Review Questions
Chapter Four: Structural Violence
Box 4.1 Child Slave Labor
Postcolonial Violence
Box 4.2 Genocide in the Americas
Corporate Violence
Box 4.3 The Tobacco Industry
Box 4.4 The ValuJet Crash
Box 4.5 The Auto Industry
Underclass Violence
Box 4.6 Hate Crimes Against the Homeless
Terrorist Violence
Institutional-Structural Violence
Box 4.7 The War on Kids
Review Questions
Chapter Five: Explanations of Violence
Ad Hoc Explanations: General and Family Violence
Life-Course Models of Human Behavior: Causation, Time, and Violence
On the Reciprocity of Violent and Nonviolent Pathways
A Reciprocal Theory of Violence
Review Questions
Chapter Six: Media and Violence
Mass Media, Columbine, and the Middle East
Box 6.1 A Dialogue on Media and Violence
Box 6.2 Tania Modleski's Tale
America's Fascination With Mediated Violence
Violence and Media Context: The Direct and Indirect Effects
Mass Media: Production, Distortion, and Consumption
Review Questions
Chapter Seven: Sexuality and Violence
Philosophizing About Sexuality
Nature, Nurture, and Human Evolution
On Aggression and Nonaggression
Marking the Sexualities of Difference and Hierarchy
Box 7.1 The Dialectics of Sexuality and the New Pornography
Box 7.2 Sexuality, Androgyny, and Sadomasochism
Sexual Difference, Gender Identity, and Violence
Review Questions
Chapter Eight: Recovering From Violence
A Reciprocal Approach to Violence Recovery
Box 8.1 Battered Women, Welfare, Poverty, Reciprocal Violence, and Recovery
Interpersonal Recovery
Institutional Recovery
Box 8.2 Films, Recovery, and Vigilantism
Structural Recovery
Box 8.3 Terrorism, Counterterrorism, Energy, and Recovery
Review Questions
Chapter Nine: Models of Nonviolence
On the Paradigms of Adversarialism and Mutualism
A Brief History of Nonviolent Struggle (1900-2000)
Models of Nonviolence
Positive Peacemaking
Review Questions
Chapter Ten: Policies of Nonviolence
A Summary Review of Victimization and the Pathways to Violence
A Review and Critique of the Adversarial War on Violence
Mutualism and the Struggle for Nonviolence
Nonviolent Policies That Prevent Antisocial Pathways to Violence
Nonviolent Policies That Build Pathways to Positive Peace, Human Rights, and Social Justice
Transformative Justice and Pathways to Violence and Nonviolence
Review Questions
About the Author

Violence and Nonviolence

Pathways to Understanding

Gregg Barak Eastern Michigan University
© 2003   360 pages   SAGE Publications, Inc  

Available Formats

ISBN:   9780761926962 Paperback Suggested Retail Price:   $79.00 Bookstore Price:   $63.20
ISBN:   9780761926955 Hardcover Suggested Retail Price:   $118.00 Bookstore Price:   $94.40

About This Title

"Gregg Barak’s Violence and Nonviolence is a thoughtful, comprehensive examination of violence in the United States. Structurally and conceptually this book works. Barak addresses violence in an interdisciplinary way, addressing history, psychology, biology, cultural studies, and sociology. Moreover, Barak does an excellent job of discussing the intersection of race, class, and gender and those relationships with violence."

-- Heather Melton, University of Utah


 "Clearly, the strength of this book is its comprehensive and reciprocal approach. I found this to be an enjoyable and provocative book… that treats the topic holistically and offers a vision for overcoming current patterns of violence. I am convinced that this is an important work that will ultimately be well-received by undergraduates, graduate students, violence specialists, and general readers."

 -- Mathew T. Lee, University of Akron


"I think that the strengths of this book are twofold: Barak’s approach disaggregates violence into interpersonal, institutional, and structural violence which is very important yet rarely done; the latter part of the book explores the pathways to nonviolence, an underrepresented area in the study of violence."

--Charis Kubrin/Sociology, George Washington University


"I have devoted close to 20 years studying and teaching about violence and I must say that this is a comprehensive book....I strongly believe that Barak has done an outstanding review of the extant literature and touches upon key issues of central concern to those of us who are social scientific experts on violence."

--Walter Dekeseredy, Ohio University


Violence and Nonviolence: Pathways to Understanding is the first book to provide an integrative, systematic approach to the study of violence and nonviolence in one volume. Eminent scholar and award-winning author Gregg Barak examines virtually all forms of violence—from verbal abuse to genocide—and treats all of these expressions of violence as interpersonal, institutional, and structural occurrences. In the context of recovery and nonviolence, Barak addresses peace and conflict studies, legal rights, social justice, and various nonviolent movements. Employing an interdisciplinary framework, Barak emphasizes the importance of culture, media, sexuality, gender, and social structure in developing a comprehensive theory of these two separate, but inseparable phenomena.


This innovative and accessible volume includes

    • Figures, tables, and illustrations that reinforce important concepts and relationships
    • Introduces a new, original theory of reciprocal violence and nonviolence
    • Numerous case studies on violence and recovery throughout the book
    • Chapter summaries and review questions to aid student comprehension
    • Models of nonviolence such as "mutuality," "altruistic humanism," "positive peacemaking," and "resiliency"


Designed to be a core text for graduate and undergraduate courses on violence in criminology, sociology, criminal justice, and social work departments, Violence and Nonviolence is also an outstanding supplementary text for violence against women and criminal behavior courses. This book will transform the way students and readers think about violence, nonviolence, and the reciprocal relationship between the two.

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