Magazine
Latest Issue

Review: Violence: A Modern Obsession, Richard Bessel

By Joanna Bourke   June 2015

Violence: A Modern Obsession61eDWRE7eUL._SL1500_by Richard Bessel (Simon & Schuster, £20)

Violence is a terrible thing. Many of us love war movies, first-person-shooter computer games and other violent spectacles, but we know the difference between real and simulated blood. Even schoolchildren can translate what Wilfred Owen called in his most famous First World War poem the “old lie”: “Dulce et decorum estPro patria mori.” To be civilised is to abhor violence. But why have modern societies become so sensitive to violence? Why…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect