Logics of Genocide : The Structures of Violence and the Contemporary World book cover
1st Edition

Logics of Genocide
The Structures of Violence and the Contemporary World

ISBN 9780367511005
Published July 17, 2020 by Routledge
312 Pages

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Book Description

This book is concerned with the connection between the formal structure of agency and the formal structure of genocide. The contributors employ philosophical approaches to explore the idea of genocidal violence as a structural element in the world.

Do mechanisms or structures in nation-states produce types of national citizens that are more susceptible to genocidal projects? There are powerful arguments within philosophy that in order to be the subjects of our own lives, we must constitute ourselves specifically as national subjects and organize ourselves into nation states. Additionally, there are other genocidal structures of human society that spill beyond historically limited episodes. The chapters in this volume address the significance—moral, ethical, political—of the fact that our very form of agency suggests or requires these structures. The contributors touch on topics including birthright citizenship, contemporary mass incarceration, anti-black racism, and late capitalism.

Logics of Genocide will be of interest to scholars and advanced students working in philosophy, critical theory, genocide studies, Holocaust and Jewish studies, history, and anthropology.

Table of Contents


Donald Bloxham


Anne O’Byrne and Martin Shuster

Part I Agency and Institutions

1. Hegel and State Homogenization

Martin Shuster

2. The Friends of War and Genocide

Jacqueline Stevens

3. The ‘Criminal’ and the Crime of Genocide

Lissa Skitolsky

4. Genocide and Agency in the Americas: Methodological Considerations

Rocío Zambrana

Part II Bodies and Beyond

5. Generational Being

Anne O’Byrne

6. Epigenetics and Existential Reflections on Trauma

Ada S. Jaarsma

7. "We Charge Genocide": Anti-Black Racism in the United States as Genocidal Structural Violence

Lisa Guenther

8. Pornographic Ways of Looking and the Logic of Disposability

Kelly Oliver

Part III Time and Violence

9. Totalitarianism as Structural Violence: Towards New Grammars of Listening

María del Rosario Acosta López

10. Gendercide, Rwanda, and Post-Genocidal Violence

Al Frankowski

11. Law and Oral History: Hearing the Claims of Indigenous Peoples

Jill Stauffer

Part IV Ethos and Violence

12. Violence, Right, and Righteousness: Thinking the Political with and Against Lévinas

Carly Lane

13. Structure and Fantasy: Holocaust Perpetrators and Genocide Studies

Dan Stone

14. Reasonable Religion, Reasonable States, and Invisible Violence

Heather Rae

Epilogue: Theses on Our Only Possible Future

James R. Watson

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Anne O’Byrne is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Stony Brook University. She is author of Natality and Finitude (2010), co-editor of Subjects and Simulations: Between Baudrillard and Lacoue-Labarthe (2014), translator of Jean-Luc Nancy’s Being Singular Plural and Corpus II, and author of numerous articles on politics, ontology, biology, and generational being.

Martin Shuster is associate professor of philosophy at Goucher College, where he also directs the Center for Geographies of Justice and where he is jointly appointed in the Humanities Center. In addition to many articles and book chapters, he is the author of Autonomy after Auschwitz: Adorno German Idealism and Modernity (2014), New Television: The Aesthetics and Politics of a Genre (2017), and How to Measure a World? A Philosophy of Judaism (2021).