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Journal cover: International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy

ISSN: 0144-333X

Online from: 1981

Subject Area: Industry and Public Sector Management

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Typologizing violence: a Blackian perspective

Document Information:
Title:Typologizing violence: a Blackian perspective
Author(s):Gary Jensen, (Department of Sociology, Vanderbilt University)
Citation:Gary Jensen, (2002) "Typologizing violence: a Blackian perspective", International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 22 Iss: 7/8, pp.75 - 108
Keywords:Moralistic, Predatory, Typology, Violence
Article type:Conceptual Paper / Research Paper
DOI:10.1108/01443330210790102 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:MCB UP Ltd
Abstract:Although typologies of violence have become more common, relatively little attention has been given to Donald Black’s (1983) distinction between moralistic and predatory violence. Moralistic violence is rooted in conflict; predatory violence is rooted in exploitation. We elaborate Black’s typology and show how it is similar to, but distinct from, other typologies of violence. We also address the criteria by which typologies of any kind might be judged. Borrowing from the literatures on typologies and on standards of scientific theory, we argue that explanatory typologies should be evaluated according to four criteria: the degree to which they are powerful, theoretical, general, and parsimonious. Applying the criteria to Black’s typology, we argue that the distinction between moralistic and predatory violence is an important contribution to the arsenal of the student of violence.

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