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Title: Different Forms of Violence – Selected Issues
Authors: Mikołajczuk, Krzysztof
Keywords: Violence; definitions and forms of violence; social pathology; aggressor; victim
Issue Date: 11-Dec-2020
Publisher: Wydawnictwo KUL
Citation: "Review of European and Comparative Law", 2020, T. 43, nr 4, s. 103-118
Abstract: Violence has been part of the human history since its very beginning. As some believe, it is “Cain’s sin” that determines violent human behaviour. Though this belief is obviously simplified, it reflects the nature of man. We are eager to seek evil in others, in individuals and in social structures. It is not just the family that is oppressive. Violence is ubiquitous; it is inflicted by peer groups, social classes, organisations, and by the state. Violence is commonly defined as social behaviour against someone or something, the aggressor being on one side and the victim on the other. Usually, a narrow definition of violence is used; i.e., violence is understood as the use of force to obtain from others what they are not willing to give or what they do not want to do. However, violence is a more complex phenomenon. Some forms of violence are sophisticated and difficult to discern, not only in the behaviour of others but also in our own actions. Violence occurs on a micro-scale in the form of pressure, extortion, inducement, or restrictions, and on a macro-scale – as wars, crises, terroristic acts, or revolutions. Violence is not only physical and psychological; it may also be personal, structural, hidden, explicit, emotional, and rational. What follows, it takes place in a wide array of spaces: in culture, sport, politics, the media, in the public space and at home. Therefore, the narrow definition of violence fails to include many of its aspects, and as such it is not practical. Using such a definition, we are left with extreme cases, so in fact we define pathologies. A serious difficulty in defining violence is connected with defining human rights in a unified way. These vary from culture to culture and have been evolving throughout history. Violation of these rights constitutes the essence of what is referred to as violent behaviour. Each society defines and attempts to prevent violence differently, and also in its own way indicates those who judge the perpetrators of prohibited acts.
DOI: 10.31743/recl.10035
Appears in Collections:Review of European and Comparative Law, 2020, Vol. 43, No 4

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