Violence and Elias's Historical Sociology: The Case of Cambodia
22 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2017
Date Written: July 5, 2017
Elias’ historical sociology method and his civilising process theory have never been applied to study long term trends in violence in non-western societies. Drawing from colonial archives, historical and contemporary secondary sources, official police data, crime victim surveys, and newspaper records we estimated the trends in homicide victims in Cambodia between 1900 and 2012, and, from a study of historical developments during the same period, examined whether Elias’ civilising process theory could explain the long term variations in violence in this country. His interrelated concepts of sociogenesis and psychogenesis, particularly state formation and monopolisation of force, interdependencies, sensitisation to violence, as well as dis-civilisation periods, adequately accounted for the successive ebbs and flows in the level of homicides in Cambodia.
Keywords: Crime, homicide, modernisation, Elias, civilising process, Cambodia
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