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Violence by Gilligan - Essay Example

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‘Violence’, defined as the exercise of physical force to usually assault or abuse someone, has become an increasingly painful plague of our societies today. However it will be impossible for any society to overcome its failures until the disparity between the perception and the actuality of the problems is not diminished…
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Violence by Gilligan

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How do we react to violence or a violent individual or group physically hurting us or other members of our society? Dr. James Gilligan, author of ‘Violence: Our Deadly Epidemic and Its Causes’, using his experience of over 35 years in dealing with prisons and the criminals of violent crimes, explains how instrumental our perceptions and reactions to violence are in eliminating it.
The concept of a harmoniously balanced society with ‘no violence’ is a resultant of mutual care and support between the members of that society (Duen Hsi Yen). This emanates from respect for each other, the absence of which internally hollows the structure of a society even though it may be apparently working harmoniously. The effects of this hollowing can be witnessed in the increasing violent crime rates, even in countries with efficient crime control agencies like the FBI and Department of Justice in the U.S.
This implies a critical analysis of the different theories of Violence. The earliest theory by the founder of the field of Psychoanalysis, Freud himself, declares that violence is but a natural impulse in all human beings. But the first hand experience of Dr Gilligan with violent criminals reveals the opposite. Violence is caused rather than natural, and society may very well be one of its major causes.
In his description of the different perceptions of violence and their affects, Gillian identifies three categories of reaction towards violence; pathos, moral plays and understanding violence as tragedy. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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