By Thomas A. Gregor

ISBN-10: 0585033099

ISBN-13: 9780585033099

ISBN-10: 0826512720

ISBN-13: 9780826512727

A stimulating and leading edge attention of the concept that, reasons, and perform of peace in societies either historical and sleek, human and primate.

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Many social theorists, beginning perhaps with Thomas Hobbes in the modern Western tradition, see humans as essentially aggressive. According to Hobbes, in the absence of socially given rules and the means of enforcing them, the human condition would be that of the war of one against all: "Hereby it is manifest, that during the time men live without a common power to keep them all in Awe, they are in that condition which is called War; and such a war, as is of everyman against everyman" (Leviathan).

Willis, 4559. London: Routledge Howell, Signe and Roy Willis. 1989. Societies at Peace: Anthropological Perspectives, ed. S. Howell and R. Willis. London: Routledge. Knauft, Bruce M. 1987. Reconsidering Violence in Simple Human Societies. Current Anthropology 28: 457500. Heelas, Paul. 1989. Identifying Peaceful Societies. In Societies at Peace: Anthropological Perspectives. ed. S. Howell and R. Willis. London: Routledge. Nakhre, Amrut. 1976. Meanings of Nonviolence: A Study of Satyagrahi Attitudes.

David Fabbro (1978) provides a sensible list of characteristics of peaceful cultures, which are also included in Bonta's (1993) bibliographic selection of peaceful societies: they do not engage in warfare; there is no standing military organization; there is relatively little interpersonal violence; and there is an ethic of interpersonal harmony. These cultures have a number of common characteristics: they are small in size, simple in technology, and socially nonhierarchical. In contrast, war and organized aggression are associated with community size and cultural development, a finding that has been replicated in numerous studies (Wright 1965; Borch and Galtung 1966; Eckhardt 1975; and Wiberg 1981).

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A Natural History of Peace by Thomas A. Gregor


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