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Martin Shaw, “Genocide and International Relations” (Cambridge UP, 2013): Works in the field of genocide studies tend to fall into one of a few camps.  Some are emotional and personal.  Others are historical and narrative.  Still others are intentionally activist and aimed at changing policy or decisions.

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Works in the field of genocide studies tend to fall into one of a few camps.  Some are emotional and personal.  Others are historical and narrative.  Still others are intentionally activist and aimed at changing policy or decisions.
Martin Shaw‘s works fit into a fourth category.  A historical sociologist, Shaw brings the very best of the social sciences to bear on the subject.  His work is carefully reasoned, theoretically informed and intensely analytical.  He’s driven to understand how the incidents of mass violence fit together into particular categories and into the broader context of a changing world.
His thinking about genocide studies has influenced the field immensely.  A decade ago, he began considering the question of the relationship between war and genocide.  Four years later, he provided a theoretically rich discussion of the nature of genocide as a term and as an event.
Now he moves on to consider the way in which the changes in the organization of the modern world have shaped the prevalence and nature of mass killing.  In Genocide and International Relations: Changing Patterns in the Transitions of the Late Modern World (Cambridge University Press, 2013), Shaw surveys centuries of world history to understand the patterns and relationships that drive genocide and mass violence.  Packed with observations and insight, the book demands and rewards attentive reading and reflection.  It’s a short book, but one that lingers long after you’ve finished reading.Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

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