An analysis of the use of violence in many literary works

Below, nine of the most violent books that are also widely celebrated as literary works of fiction. The kid is violent, and so is the gang he joins, whose members are ostensibly collecting the scalps of Apaches, but are really happy to murder anyone and everyone they encounter, and so, of course, is the terrifying and hairless Judge Holden, the only character whose love for bloodshed is intensified by philosophical surety. I mean, this is a book about a man who finds himself strangely, irresistibly tempted to stab his own new baby daughter with an ice pick. I mean, do you know what it sounds like when someone has their Achilles tendons sliced in two?

An analysis of the use of violence in many literary works

In its primary sense, therefore, violence denotes injury and also violation involving people or property. Though the concept of violence has always intrigued philosophers, psychologists, and literary artists, it is only in the 20th century that it has gained currency in most cultural discourses.

Perhaps this is owing to the exponential increase in the incidence of violence in the modern era, to the unprecedented carnage the world has witnessed in the course of the century, and to the emergence of crusaders of nonviolence such as Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Beyond defining what violence is, social thinkers have lately turned their attention to its moral and cultural justifiability as a means to achieve personal, social, or political ends.

While the concept of violence itself has undergone considerable philosophical analyses since ancient times, thus far there has been no consensus about its precise character. Simply put, violence is the overt physical manifestation of force on individuals, groups, or nations.

Its definition, however, has been continually evolving with an increasing philosophical interest that goes beyond its overtly physical manifestations to more covert psychological and institutional practices.

Broadly speaking, racism, sexism, economic exploitation, and ethnic and religious persecution are all possible sources of violence involving constraints that abuse people psychologically, if not physically. Philosophers also disagree on the moral and political justifiability of employing violence to achieve personal or social ends.

While some thinkers view violence to be inherently wrong e. The philosophical positions rationalizing violence tend to focus on ends that outweigh the evils of injury or violation involved. Conversely, proponents of nonviolence challenge the claims of advocates of violence, citing the misery and mayhem it brings about.

By advocating violent general strikes, Sorel sought to inaugurate a class warfare against the state and capitalistic industrialists. Arendt concedes that violence can be justified only in defense against perceived threats to life, when it does not exceed necessity and its ends are patently positive.

Despite his sympathies with nonviolence as a stance, Garver does not advocate it as a viable social goal and posits that conflicts between nations may be minimized but not always eliminated. Obviously, thinkers differ in their approach to defining violence and continue to examine its apocalyptic manifestation in contemporary times.

The problem of violence has also been of considerable interest to psychologists. Sigmund Freud was the first to diagnose the origins of neurosis, including violent behavior in human subjects.

An analysis of the use of violence in many literary works

Following the psychoanalytic paradigms of repression, the complexity of human violence has been studied by modern psychiatrists such as James Gilligan in Violence: Reflections on a National Epidemic He attributes violence in humans to a life bereft of love, either from without resulting in feelings of rejection or from within resulting in shame.

Thus, both these deficiencies are an outcome of the patriarchal structure of civilization that assigns codified and often repressive roles to each of the sexes, reinforcing traditional ideas of honor and dishonor, pride and shame. For psychoanalysts from Freud to Gilligan, violence remains a disturbing subject whose origin as well as cure lies within the complex cultural network that fashions human subjects.

Beginning with epic narratives like The Mahabharata, the Homeric verses, and Beowulf Anonymousamong others, literature has always attempted to represent violence as a trope for relationships of power and domination.

For most 20th-century artists, violence, ranging from the destruction of large-scale warfare to individual crimes of murder, rape, and abuse, is an inevitable aspect of their visions.

Unable to accept a fallen world, modernist writers often employ destructive violence as the central motif in their works. For instance, the poetry of Sylvia Plath and John Wain attempts to discern the sources and effects of modern violence culminating in anger, frustration, despair, and even suicide.

Critics also emphasize the historical significance of violence in the period following World War II, when poets and novelists bemoaned a world mired in conflict, and in which aggression threatened to destroy all humane qualities.

With the close of the 20th century, imagistic representation of violence in all forms of media has become commonplace. Films, television, art, and print media are saturated with images of familial violence involving women and children; issues of community violence directed toward ethnic and minority groups; the practice of institutional violence in workplace, schools, hospitals, police and law enforcement agencies; and incidents of state violence, such as the repression and surveillance practices after the September 11,destruction of the World Trade Center in the United States, the legitimation of violence through state support witnessed in the communal riots in Gujarat, and the Nandigram massacre in West Bengal, India.

Though the media plays an active role in recording, portraying, disseminating, and reflecting on violence, its methods and intentions are often suspect because the politics influencing it may engender newer forms of violence. Plagued by violence, the contemporary era views nonviolence as a redeeming idea and the need of the hour.

Violence in Literature Analysis -

Contemporary discourses on nonviolence not only advocate traditional ideals such as love and tolerance to protect both human and animal rights; they also focus, paradoxically, on the use of violence to achieve peace through enforcement and prosecution. Besides, the modern practitioners of nonviolence seek to strengthen the role of nongovernmental organizations that promote education to prevent violence.

Significantly, pacifist propaganda, too, is embedded in the matrix of human civilization and continues to be a cause worth fighting for in a world with ever-escalating incidences of violence. See also Albee, Edward: Salt Eaters, The; Conrad, Joseph: Heart of Darkness; Dickens, Charles: Tim Drum, The; Hesse, Herman: Separate Peace, A; Kozinski, Jerzy:the field of Native literary analysis, it seeks to intervene in the gaps of literary nationalist approaches by reading the works of Zitkala-Sa, Janet Campbell Hale and Linda Hogan from a red feminist perspective which makes central.

Violence has played a part in children’s literature throughout the ages, but as Maureen Nimon () points out in her essay about violence in children’s literature, “It is only in recent decades that the place of violence in children’s books has been so vigorously questioned” (p.


An analysis of the use of violence in many literary works

Here is a bunch of more literary analysis paper topics for other great works of literature. Elie Wiesel’s classic memoire of the holocaust Night is a difficult book for many students to read.

People and nature

And yet, most students need to write a Night by Elie Wiesel essay at some point. Another type of violence in literature is the institutional violence, a theme first seen in the works of writers like Victor Hugo () and Alexandre Dumas (), who showed in their novels the violence of the justice system and the damage caused to a human being sent to jail.

analysis of Death of a Salesman, “A Rose for Emily, and “Everyday Use” Literary Trauma: Sadism, Memory, and Sexual Violence in American Women's Fiction by . First, because many Africans are nonliterate, they have not read the original literary works adapted to the screen. Second, many of the African films discussed in this book are rarely screened in Africa, so many Africans are not exposed to their critique of contemporary situations.

An analysis of the use of violence in many literary works