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This is a simple outline of the 4 stages of violence in society, as proposed by the sources listed below. Although they are both writing about Latin America, I think this is a valuable analytical tool that can be used throughout the Global South and beyond.
The subtle institutional destruction of human possibilities that is around us all the time, but is often is not apparent to the comfortably off.
Injustice generates a revolt of the oppressed themselves or of youth battling for a more just and human world. Violence usually comes after less extreme reactions to injustice such as strikes, demonstrations, self-help, or occupations. When such resistance leads to violence on the streets it is like lava flowing down from the top of a volcano; it is fed by deeper, hidden fires of social dislocation and injustice.
The authorities are obliged to re-establish public order, which usually means the use of force, and even torture. (Herbert Marcuse called this “repressive tolerance” in his influential book “One Dimensional Man”, which I first read in 1968.) When rioters are locked up, harassed, lose their jobs or homes; or in some countries “disappear” or are tortured, then the resistance is driven underground to live to fight again another day.
(4) Revolt of large numbers:
May be violent or non-violent, planned or spontaneous. Could lead to an armed insurrection or even more severe state repression.
(i) Camara, Helder “Spiral of Violence”
(ii) Horsley, R. “Jesus and the spiral of violence”
[indexed & linked, t&c]