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Violence: a Reflection on the National Epidemic (Vintage) [Paperback]

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Book Description

1 Dec 2001 Vintage
Drawing on firsthand experience as a prison psychiatrist, his own family history, and literature, Gilligan unveils the motives of men who commit horrifying crimes, men who will not only kill others but destroy themselves rather than suffer a loss of self-respect. With devastating clarity, Gilligan traces the role that shame plays in the etiology of murder and explains why our present penal system only exacerbates it. Brilliantly argued, harrowing in its portraits of the walking dead, Violence should be read by anyone concerned with this national epidemic and its widespread consequences.

"Extraordinary. Gilligan's recommendations concerning what does work to prevent violence...are extremely convincing...A wise and careful, enormously instructive book."--Owen Renik, M.D., editor, Psychoanalytic Quarterly

Product details

  • Paperback: 306 pages
  • Publisher: Pantheon Books Inc (1 Dec 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679779124
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679779124
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 13.2 x 1.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 679,754 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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By A Customer
As a scholar who has spent the last 3 years trying to understand what drives men (and now boys) to the extremes that we have witnessed at the Dunblane (Scotland) Elementary School - 19 dead, (March, 1996), the Port Arthur (Tasmania) Historic Site - 35 dead (April 1996), on through a litany of American towns right up to the Columbine High School in Littleton, CO in April 99, I have found the greatest insight into these actions in Gilligan's book. He asserts that at the root of the worst violence, indeed all violence, is shame. I concur. This book must be required for parents, teachers, psychologists, anyone concerned with the roots of violence. Guns provide the means (the British and Australians were wise enough to legislate gun controls after their respective disasters), shame is the driving force behind each of the cases of horror we witness all too frequently!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gilligan keeps you turning the pages 6 May 1998
By A Customer
From the very first paragraph of Gilligan's "Violence," the reader realizes that this is not going to be a book by a stodgy old psychiatrist ready to give his detached expert opinion on the subject of violence. The synopsis gives an execellent summation of what the book is about--what it leaves out is how great a job Gilligan does in telling it. He sets himself apart not only with his genius but with his skill as a writer. I love all the literary references and analogies Gilligan uses to strengthen the position he takes. Overall an excellent read for anyone who might be interested in better understanding those individuals who suffer such degradation--such shame--that they chose to destroy others' lives.
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5.0 out of 5 stars incredibly important book! 19 Aug 1999
By A Customer
This book is probably one of the most important books written on the subject of violence in America. I would couple it with Steven Stosny"s Treating Attachment Abuse: A Compassionate Approach as creating a solution to the problem of violence. If you are interested in the solution and not in perpetuating the problem, read these books.
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