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Identity and Violence: The Illusion of Destiny

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  1,184 Ratings  ·  135 Reviews
In this sweeping philosophical work, Amartya Sen proposes that the murderous violence that has riven our society is driven as much by confusion as by inescapable hatred. Challenging the reductionist division of people by race, religion, and class, Sen presents an inspiring vision of a world that can be made to move toward peace as firmly as it has spiraled in recent years ...more
Paperback, Abridged, 240 pages
Published February 17th 2007 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 2006)
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أحمد أبازيد Ahmad Abazed
يتلخّص كتاب أمارتيا صن في أنّه يريد القول أن لا هويّة واحدة للإنسان , وإنّ كلّ إنسان يدخل في دوائر متعدّدة من الانتماءات و الهويّات و الجماعات , لا يمكن اختزالها بهويّته الدينية أو العرقيّة وحدها , و أنّ الهويّة اختيار لا اكتشاف .
إضافةً للتعليق على حوادث دالّة على التعصّب فيما يتعلّق بالعنصرية ضد السود أو الحرب الأهلية في راوندا أو النزاعات بين الهندوس و المسلمين في الهند , أو الأصوليّة الإسلاميّة كما يراها , مع التعريض ببعض حوادث العنصريّة الغربيّة ضدّ المسلمين , و يرى أمارتيا صن إنّه من الخطأ
عاطف عثمان

للنظريات حياة خاصة

من الغريب حقا أن تستمر الأفكار والتصورات عن العرق والجنس والطبقة بالرغم من منافاة الواقع والظواهر لتلك التصورات والتحيزات. يذهب أمارتيا صن صاحب كتاب الهوية والعنف إلي أن "النظريات لها حياة خاصة بها، شديدة التحدي لعالم الظواهر التي يمكن رصدها واقعيا" ويري أن المشكلة ليست في ظهور هذه التعميمات المبسطة وتأثيرها علي تفكيرنا ونظرتنا للآخرين، بل في أنها تتحول إلي نظريات كبري في التفسير.

فإذا كانت المرأة قد عاشت حينا من الدهر وهي قليلة الخبرة وغير متعلمة وغير مثقفة وغير قادرة علي الف
Nov 02, 2007 Ryan rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: those totally unfamiliar with any critique of the "clash of civilizations" thesis
The points that Sen makes in this book are valid and I agree with his basic thesis that people inhabit many different identities and to box people into identities solely based on religious ones fails to acknowledge the many different ways in which people see themselves. This type of thinking contributes to the widespread "us vs. them" mentality that leads to greater violence and less understanding between people. Sen's corrective to the widely prevalent "clash of civilizations" thesis is greatly ...more
Nov 16, 2012 أميــــرة rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to أميــــرة by: عاطف عثمان
دخل هذا الكتاب ضمن قائمة أهم عشرة كتب قرأتها حتى الآن. إنه متعة فكرية خالصة، ويتعرض لمسألة عالمية هي الهويات الفردية وكيف يمكن استغلالها لتزكية العنف. الفصل الأخير بعنوان (حرية التفكير) كان أكثر الفصول إنسانية وواقعية ومناسب جدًا لما تشهده مصر وقت كتابة هذه المراجعة.

أمارتيا صن فيسلوف ويعشق الاقتصاد، لكن ما أشعل تلك القدرة الذهنية لديه على تحليل الأمور وربطها ببعضها البعض هو تلك الهزة النفسية العنيفة التي تعرض لها وهو في الحادية عشرة من عمره عندما رأي القتل بعينيه في الشغب الطائفي الذي حدث بالهند
Jul 13, 2014 Esra'a rated it did not like it
Q: What causes violence?
A: Ignoring the relevance of all other affiliations and identities.

I have just saved you a 200 page read of going over this idea repeatedly.

Mohammed Yusuf
Jul 17, 2016 Mohammed Yusuf rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

الفكرة الاساسية لكتاب الهوية والعنف ، أن اختزال الافراد في هوية وبالإساس الدينية أمر غير ذو فائدة بالإضافة إلى أنه يربي نزوع التطرف في الأفراد فأنه ينتج تحليلات خاطئة سواءا على المستوى السياسي او الاجتماعي

لنتكلم عن الهوية ، يجب أن نعرف أولا ما هي ، ولكن صن لا يذكر عن ذلك شيئا ، بينما حسن حنفي في كتابه الهوية لا ينفك يعرفها ، و من المهم هنا استحضار أمين معلوف في كتابه الهويات القاتلة حيث يصف أن الهوية التي نحس بحوجتنا لنصرتها و التي تسيطر على الصورة تلك التي نظنها مهددة ، نعم هذا المعنى اختزالي
Feb 07, 2011 Dan rated it really liked it
Amartya Sen really gets it. He has the language and the argument for thoughts I've had jangling in my head for years. I'd encourage this for anyone who has ever doubted monolithic identities, or has disliked being labeled, or worried over just what multiculturalism means.

I would try to summarize the book, but I think you should just read it.
Divyanshu Jha
Dec 25, 2011 Divyanshu Jha rated it it was amazing
Strongly recommended. A book that asks you to reason with it.Discusses real world issues of multiculturalism, sectarianism, Islamic fundamentalism and globalization with a lucidity of expression that befits the writer. Sen's benevolent world view and optimism shines through regularly in his analysis.
At some point of time, I could even map the issues the book raised to Hall 3 Hall 2 rivalry. :)
In short, more easily written than Sen's other more arduous works and a pleasure to read and think over
Vincent Li
Jul 11, 2013 Vincent Li rated it really liked it
This book along with Appiah's Cosmopolitanism heavily shaped my opinions regarding identity. Sen's argument basically rests on two pillars. 1) Human beings do not have a singular identity but overlapping, contrasting and plural identities. 2) Identity is not discovered, immutable natural fact, but the choice of people. To the first point, Sen points to the conceptional errors of categorizing people in one box (he has a lot to say about Huntington's Clash of the Civilizations). He argues that the ...more
May 04, 2009 Andrew rated it did not like it
Amartya Sen makes one central, relatively novel argument that individuals have multiple components to their identities and problems arise when people are reduced to singular adjectives (whether Muslim, Hindu, Sunni, Shia, etc). Sen argues that periods of genocide are precipitated by pidgeonholing people into singular identities (ie. the relatively arbitrary distinction between Hutu and Tutsi in Rwanda). Sen also described Britain and India as two countries that have met the task of assimilating ...more
Nov 26, 2009 Joe rated it it was amazing
Sometimes it’s nice to read a book with which you wholeheartedly agree. Amartya Sen provides a very eloquent defence of recognising that humans have multiple identities and points out the sometimes dreadful results of only assigning one.

Sen seems to have an extremely good grasp of human psychology; a particularly rare attribute for an economist. He comes across as an eminently sensible and humane observer and is eloquent in his critique of both overt sectarianism, but also well meaning yet deepl
John David
Feb 21, 2014 John David rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
This book is interested in the question of human identity, its inherent multiplicity, and the choices that we make in regard to aligning ourselves with certain identities over others. We all have multiple identities, which Sen repeatedly points out. For example, he says of himself that "I can be, at the same time, an Asian, an Indian citizen, a Bengali with Bangladeshi ancestry, an American or British resident, an economist, a dabbler in philosophy, an author, a Sanskritist, a strong believer in ...more
Jackson Cyril
Sen's lucid and erudite essay calls to question the concept of identity: what is it? is it fixed? how much freedom do we have over our 'identity' and how we choose to express it? As fanatics and demagogues seek to diminish our individuality-- think here of folks like Trump-- and clump us into groups-- his main beef here is with Huntington's "Clash of Civilizations" thesis--, Sen argues that this is exactly the sort of thing which leads to misunderstanding and violence. Indeed his recipe for peac ...more
Membaca awalan dari buku ini cukup menarik. Sen mengajak kita memasuki diskusi seputar identitas yang di paruh akhir abad 20 kembali menjadi hangat.

Identitas sebagai bagian inheren dari manusia dibawa dalam diskusi Sen menjadi sesuatu yang tidak semata teknis, tapi juga personal. Ceritanya berawal saat ia ditanya petugas bandara berkaitan dengan alamat yang tercantum dalam paspornya. "Anda bersahabat dengan Rektor Trinity College?" Pertanyaan itu merupakan sebuah awal yang personal ketika selanj
Kyaw Win Tun
Oct 29, 2012 Kyaw Win Tun rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sen suggested choosing one's identities in multiple terms, not in a single term. He points out the effect of perceiving a people, a person, a region or a civilization in the framework of only one identity which is their religion. He argues that even in that particular framework, policy makers see a certain kind of religion in a very rigid box ignoring various interpretations and choices of individuals. He attacks Huntington's concept of "Clash of Civilizations" and denies the communitarian's vie ...more
Bookish Dervish
ثلاثة أفكار أساسية يدندن بها و عليعا الكتاب و هي من الأمية بحيث تستحق المناقشة المستفيضة:
- تُحدد هويةُ المرء بعناصر مختلفة و متداخلة كاللغة و الدين و اللون و المواطنة...... فإني مثلا عربي مسلم شمال أفريقي مغربي...... لا تتعارض هذه العناصر في حالة هويات سوية و في حالة التعارض, يوضع المرء في موقف الإختيار وهذا ما يأخدنا إلى الفكرة الثانية.
- هناك مجال واسع لاختيار المرء هويته.....
- قد لا تقابل هذه الإختيارات بتقبل أفراد آخرين.
إننا لسنا مسجونينفي مواقعنا و انتماءاتنا المتلقاة بقدر ما يبدو في افتر
Antonio Gallo
Una delle "cose" più importanti, in questo mondo sempre più globalizzato, una "cosa" che unisce e allo stesso tempo divide, è quel misterioso, ma non tanto, sentimento che va sotto il nome di "identità". Sentimento di varia natura ed origine. Può essere religioso, nazionale, politico, linguistico, sociale, culturale, razziale, etnico, comunitario, maschile, femminile. Insomma, tutti quegli elementi e quelle occasioni che gli uomini sono pronti ad escogitare per distinguersi l'uno dall'altro. Man ...more
Mohammed AL-Khd
يركز أماريتا في هذا الكتاب على أن الصراع في عالمنا الحالي يدعمه و هم الهوية الممنفردة الذي يحكم تصنيفاتنا للبشر الآخرين بعيداً عن هوياتهم الأُخرى التي يجب ألا نتغافلها ، و يناقش و يحاول صن إ، يدعنا نجد فهم واع باالحرية الإنسانية و تأثير الصوت العام البناء في المجتمع المادي العالمي ..

و ويوضح لنا أن العالم يمكن أن يتحرك تجاه السلام بنفس القوة و الثبات اللذين تحرك بهما نحو العنف و الحرب ..

على العموم يمكن أن يعجب المهتمين بالكتاب الإنسانيين و دعاة المثالية فقد وجدت أن للكتاب نظرة طوباوية مفرطة صعبة
Apr 29, 2013 Maha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
الكتاب له شعور خاص بسبب المكان الذي شري منه..
هناك فكرة رئيسية بكل الكتاب وهي تعدد الهويات والثقافات، فمن الصعب أن تجد شخص واحد لديه ثقافة وهوية واحدة..
الكتاب بالمجمل جيد، ولكن الأفكار به محصورة نوعًا.. وكما أنه تعرض لأمور لم أوافقه بها بشكل كامل ، مثل عدم رضى الكاتب عن عدم تكفير المتشددين في الدول العربية وأمور كهذه..
Nov 02, 2012 E7san rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: half-read
الكتاب مملّ .. مملّ جدًا، يستمرّ مارتيا سن بتكرار نفس الفكرة في كلّ صفحة ! وكنتُ سأعتقد أنّ التّرجمة وحدها هي السّبب لولا أنّ تقييمات النّسخة الانجليزية الأصلية انتقدت نفس النّقطة !

عمومًا، أتممتُ قراءة ١٠٠ صفحة تقريبًا منه كي لا يستمرّ ضميري بتأنيبي في ما بعد، ثمّ تركته .

وبالنّسبة للترجمة، فأعتقد بأنّني لو قرأتُ النسخة الانجليزية لكان الفهم أسهل علي ! تركيب الجمل المتَرجمة معقّد وبائس جدًا !
Sep 08, 2009 Jeffcolli rated it it was amazing
Although Samuel Huntington puts forth an interesting social theory in his book "The Clash of Civilizations", this book pretty effectively points out how ridiculous it is. Sen explores the multiple identities we all have and examines the validity of using a single shared identity to group huge numbers of people into civilizations.
Ardhendu Bhattacharya
Amartya Sen, a Nobel laureate, attempts to analyse the conflicts around the world through his own perspective in this fascinating read. While this book was written and published in 2006, the ideas expressed in this book are still prevalent in today's war-torn world. What makes his approach to understanding the conflicts stand out is the depth to which he goes with his analysis of the historical and present-day conflicts as of 2005. He goes to length about how perceiving people to have a dominant ...more
Lady Clara
Amartya Sen is world-wide known, which for a scientist isn't as common as to compare with, let's say, actors or sport stars. He has received the Swedish Nobel prize in Economy, as given every year by the Swedish Riksbank in the memory of Alfred Nobel. So you might wonder, why Sen writes a book about Identity and Violence! A subject which he doesn't link to his own area of expertise, economics. But Sen is a man of many aspects! So far in my search for a Bachelors' Degree, I have studied several o ...more
Akmal A.
Feb 05, 2017 Akmal A. rated it it was amazing
Permasalahan identiti sebenarnya memang berlaku di Malaysia yang kalau tidak diselesaikan makin melebarlah jurang antara muslim - non muslim, peribumi - non peribumi, dan kaya - miskin. Amartya Sen telah menyinggung beberapa hal penting tentang persoalan ras, identiti dan konflik. Menurut aku selepas buku Mitos Peribumi Malas oleh S.H Alatas, buku ini adalah bacaan wajib dalam membetulkan semula cara dan gaya pandang kita dalam memahami kelompok atau kaum lain. Penulis memberi justifikasi yang u ...more
Willy Akhdes
Mar 11, 2017 Willy Akhdes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Karya peraih Nobel Ekonomi 1998 ini sangat penting dibaca. Terlebih ditengah vigilantisme dan sikap intoleransi yang mewabah akhir-akhir ini yang membuat cuaca kehidupan bermasyarakat kian memanas. Dalam buku ini, Amartya Sen memaparkan dengan gamblang bagaimana kecendrungan manusia untuk memberi identitas-identas tertentu kepada manusia lain yang mengkonfirmasi keinginannya. Padahal, menurutnya, identitas adalah sesuatu yang cair, tidak tetap, dan selalu berubah menyesuaikan konteks. Sehingga k ...more
Sumallya Mukhopadhyay
Oct 20, 2016 Sumallya Mukhopadhyay rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourite

An extremely important work which interrogates the naturalised classification of an individual according to civilizations and foregrounds the importance of recognizing the various identities an individual is affiliated to which attain definite meaning when placed in proper social context. Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilization is scathingly attacked to highlight how civilizational confinement leads to partitioning of culture, thereby aggravating hostility among various groups, resulting in de
Neesha Fakir
Mar 08, 2017 Neesha Fakir rated it it was amazing
This is probably my favourite read of Sen's and it still inspires me everyday.
Jan 10, 2016 nick rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
"Classification is cheap but identity is not"

This author was long overdue for me to read unfortunately I took the wrong book.

Not that I did not like the book or found it badly written or structured (even if at times I felt like the author was carried away by related subjects and the focus on identity and violence was a bit lost at times). My problem was that I did not really learn anything new. I have read and thought about the multiple identity theory in opposition to the singular identity theo
Dec 25, 2010 Ilya rated it really liked it
Samuel Huntington and many armchair geopoliticians want to divide up humanity into distinct civilizations; in particular, they want to call India a Hindu civilization. Hold on! says Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen. India has more Muslims than any other country except Indonesia and Pakistan; the richest Indian, software entrepreneur Azim Premji, is a Muslim, and so is Shahrukh Khan, star of the film "Asoka" about the great Maurya Emperor who converted to Buddhism. India also has had Sik ...more
Mar 28, 2013 Paul rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, politics
This book lives up to half of its title - there's a lot on identity, very little on violence. It seems to be more concerned with ethnic conflict in the abstract, which isn't the end of the world but a little misleading if, like me, you're reading it for an essay on the ethnic roots of aggression.

I'll give it a solid but unexceptional three stars, because I must admit it's a decent and readable introduction to the constructivist/modernist approach to identity. Still, it doesn't add much to the de
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Amartya Kumar Sen is an Indian economist who was awarded the 1998 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his contributions to welfare economics and social choice theory, and for his interest in the problems of society’s poorest members.

Sen was best known for his work on the causes of famine, which led to the development of practical solutions for preventing or limiting the effects of real or perceiv
More about Amartya Sen...

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“إن التحريض على العنف يحدث بفضل هويات مفردة انعزالية وعدوانية، يناصرها ويؤيدها محترفون بارعون للإرهاب، على أناس بسطاء وساذجين” 4 likes
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