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Cris Campbell

In: 21st Century Anthropology: A Reference Handbook

Chapter 79: Conflict and Aggression

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Conflict and Aggression
Conflict and aggression

Humans, it often seems, are creatures of conflict. Without doubt, the annals of history bear stark witness to the reality of human aggression. By most measures, human conflict and aggression have directly or indirectly resulted in hundreds of millions of deaths over time. If mute statistics had explanatory power, then the inevitable conclusion would be that humans are by their natures irredeemably aggressive. This aggression, in turn, is at the heart of perpetual conflict. Certainly, this view has long been dominant in the West, where the biblical story of human corruption in the Garden of Eden has been a powerful and enduring influence.

Anthropology's particular approach to the related topics of conflict and aggression is biological and cultural, or biocultural. Humans ...

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