Global warring

This project formulates and applies theory pertinent to organized violence. There are three parts to the project. The first part constructs micro-level theory of the operation of structures within the individual that determine action. Such theory is concerned with neurohermeneutics. The second part of the project constructs macro-level theory of structures external to the individual that are based upon the coordination of action into practices and institutions. Such theory is concerned with force and power. The third part of the project utilizes this theory to explain organized violence between approximately A.D. 1400 and the present. Emphasis is upon the increasing global nature of this violence. Specifically, the theory is applied to analyze power within Chad. Here a Muslim north has warred with a non-Muslim south for thirty years. At first glance this Thirty Year War appears to be one caused by religious animosities within different ethnic groups. More complete investigation place the war within the context of global political and economic struggles between advanced capitalist states and their opponents during the Cold War.

Keywords: Contemporary Social and Cultural Theory, Power, War and Violence, Brain and Culture, Western and Central African Ethnography


‘Literary anthropology and the case against science’. Man. 29: 572-581.

‘Theory in anthropology in the nineties’. Cultural Dynamics. 9: 325-350.

‘Theory counts: (discounting) discourse to the contrary by adopting a confrontational stance’. Anthropological Theory. 1: 9-31.


Wars Without End: The Political Economy of a Precolonial African State. Hanover, NH: New England University Press.

Studying War: Anthropological Perspectives. (Co-edited with R.E. Downs) New York: Gordon and Breach.

Deadly Developments: War, Capitalism and the Modern State. (Co-edited with R.E. Downs). New York: Gordon and Breach.

Forthcoming Making Connections: Cultural Neurohermeneutics in a Social Anthropology.

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