Technologies of violence and vulnerability

Kelly Oliver

in Democracy in Crisis

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780719079238
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781702123 | DOI:
Technologies of violence and vulnerability

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This chapter explores the ambiguity in the relation between violence and vulnerability to determine the putative difference between legitimate and illegitimate forms of violence, and between presumptions of innocence and culpability in relation to war. It argues that the capacity to wound is the original meaning of the word vulnerability, which is only secondarily defined as the susceptibility to being wounded. This chapter also considers the violence undertaken by the U.S. against detainees at Abu Ghraib. It also contends that the ambiguous position of the body in relation to technology within the Western imaginary makes it appear as both vulnerable and threatening.

Keywords: violence; vulnerability; innocence; war; U.S.; detainees; Abu Ghraib; technology

Chapter.  7626 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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