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NCJ Number: 63486 Find in a Library
Title: POLITICAL VIOLENCE - THE BEHAVIORAL PROCESS
Author(s): H L NIEBURG
Corporate Author: St Martin's Press
Scholarly & Reference Division
United States of America
Date Published: 1969
Page Count: 190
Sponsoring Agency: St Martin's Press
New York, NY 10010
Format: Book (Hardbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK FOR UNDERSTANDING THE SOCIAL DYNAMICS OF POLITICAL VIOLENCE IS DEVELOPED.
Abstract: A SOCIETY IS INHERENTLY COMPOSED OF COMPETITIVE INDIVIDUALS AND GROUPS, ALL STRUGGLING TO MAINTAIN OR ADVANCE THEIR ADVANTAGES THROUGH A VARIETY OF MEANS. CHANGE IS ENDEMIC, AND PEOPLE ADOPT PEACEFUL OR VIOLENT MEANS TO PARTICIPATE IN AND ADJUST TO IT; SOCIAL ACTION ALWAYS MOVES ALONG A CONTINUUM BETWEEN VIOLENCE AND NONVIOLENCE BECAUSE SOCIAL LIFE IS DYNAMIC. UNDER STABLE CONDITIONS, THE GENERAL CHANGE-GENERATING COMPETITION IS LOW-KEY SINCE THE LEGAL-POLITICAL ORGANS ARE USED IN A TRADITIONAL, LEGITIMATE MANNER. IN UNSTABLE CONDITIONS, BARGAINING BETWEEN INTEREST GROUPS IS SOMETIMES INTENSIFIED TO THE POINT OF VIOLENCE (THE MILITANT CHALLENGE) AND COUNTERVIOLENCE (THE GOVENMENT'S DEFENSE OF A GIVEN INTEREST COALITION). UNDER HEIGHTENED INSTABILITY, DEVIANT OR CRIMINAL GROUPS AND GROUPS FAVORING VIOLENCE TEND TO INCREASE IN NUMBER AND ENLARGE THE QUANTITY AND RANGE OF THEIR ACTIVITY. THESE ACTIVITIES ARE AN EXTENSION OF SOCIETY'S NORMAL STATE. THEIR APPEARANCE INDICATES THAT THE BARGAINING AND CHANGE PROCESS IS BEING INTENSIFIED AND CONDUCTED BY NONTRADITIONAL MEANS. WHEN GROUPS FAVORING VIOLENT MEANS OF PRESSING INTEREST CLAIMS GAIN INFORMAL LEGITIMACY, THEY PROVIDE MODELS OF BEHAVIOR FOR OTHERS. ONE SUCH TYPE, THE ASSASSIN, APPEARS WHEN THE SOCIAL BARGAINING PROCESS IS CONDUCTED VIOLENTLY. CONFLICT IS AN ESSENTIAL ASPECT OF GROWTH, ONE THAT CAN NEITHER BE FULLY CONTROLLED OR PREVENTED. SOCIAL LIFE EXHIBITS A TENDENCY TOWARD HUMANIZING POWER AND THE DAMPENING OF EXTREME OSCILLATIONS OF CHANGE. HISTORY DEMONSTRATES THAT SOCIETIES CAN AND DO RECOVER AND EVEN PROFIT FROM SEIZURES AND DISASTERS. FURTHER, IT SHOWS THAT EXTREME BEHAVIOR IS SELECTIVE AND POLITICALLY LIMITED UNDER ALL BUT THE MOST CASTASTROPHIC CONDITIONS. REFERENCES AND AN INDEX ARE PROVIDED. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED---RCB)
Index Term(s): Assassination; Political offenders; Politically motivated violent crimes; Revolutionary or terrorist groups
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