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Portraits of Violence: An Illustrated History of Radical Critique
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Portraits of Violence: An Illustrated History of Radical Critique

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  80 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Bringing together established academics and award-winning comic book writers and illustrators, Portraits of Violence illustrates the most compelling ideas and episodes in the critique of violence.

Hannah Arendt, Franz Fanon, Jacques Derrida, Edward Said, Paolo Freire, Michel Foucault, Susan Sontag, Noam Chomsky, Judith Butler, and Giorgio Agamben each have ten pages to tell
Paperback, 128 pages
Published December 27th 2016 by New Internationalist
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4.03  · 
Rating details
 ·  80 ratings  ·  24 reviews

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Jun 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
From one of the best political philosophers around! Anything by Brad Evans is excellent. Here, he edited a collection of short narratives from many other of the best political philosophers. The theme running through connects violence to it's legitmation as a political tool, and not much else "naturally", throughout history. The inclusion of comic portrayals is brilliant, and I'm generally not a comics kind of gal. The various Asian artists have terrifically powerful images here, too. My favorite ...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I'm not sure I realized this was a graphic novel representation of these thinkers when I asked to see a copy, and I'm not sure it is a necessary thing to illustrate. Most of the time the majority of illustrations are depictions of the philosophers, and other times the scenes they were using to illustrate violence I wasn't sure I wanted to see! So for me, I'm torn. It was easier to read with visuals, and that might mean it would get more people who are new to the philosophers to read it. So even ...more
Meric Aksu
Mar 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
“Adaletin olup olabilecek en korkunç düşmanı, güçle ittifak yapmış bir cehalettir.” James Baldwin

“Cehalet, güçlünün fayda sağladığı politik bir silahtır. Bu, düşüncenin önünü tıkayıp muhakemeyi zayıflatarak, rıza imal etmek ve muhalifleri susturmak için kullanılan sınıf savaşının bir unsurudur.” Noam Chomsky

Cehalet cehalet deyip de sözü İlber Ortaylı’ya getirmeye çalıştığımı sanmayın sakın. Ama adını anmak da dile getirmektir bir yerde. Buradaysa, özellikle Henry A. Giroux’nun enfes önsözünde de
Stewart Tame
Sep 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Interesting, informative, and dry. This is a decent introduction to the ideas of various people such as Noam Chomsky, Hannah Arendt, Michel Foucault, Susan Sontag, and more. Some of it can be tough chewing, especially if you're not used to reading philosophy. The book does a fairly decent job of presenting the material, but it's ultimately more remarkable for what it is than what it's about. It's a decent introduction to the ideas, but it's no substitute for in-depth reading.

Yes, I suppose I do
Derek Fenner
Feb 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
A useful book as an introduction to seminal theoretical texts that I love. Not a stand-in for those texts but I can utilize this with students who haven't yet encountered a lot of social theory as a way in. &was much as I like Giroux it was a little strange that he ended up taking up so much space in the Freire chapter. I get it, but just give him his own chapter.
Apr 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Portraits of Violence: An Illustrated History of Radical Critique by Brad Evans and Sean Michael Wilson and illustrated by several artists including Inko and Carl Thompson brings together ten of the most renowned academics and thinkers on the subject including Paolo Friere, Michel Foucault, Noam Chomsky, and Susan Sontag as well as a foreword by Henry A. Giroux. Using the graphic form, it gives a short overview of the theories on violence put forth by each. This is a compelling, challenging, and ...more
Maggie Gordon
While I don't think graphic novels are the best way of conveying heavy political theory, I am done for any attempt at making critical thought more accessible! Portraits of Violence covers a variety of theorists and their thoughts on violence. Some quotes are included, though most of the book is paraphrasing their ideas. It's a good way of getting people to think about difficult concepts and perhaps seek out the original texts.
Feb 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It is really funny to see Susan Sontag illustrated in anime style, but other than that this is an accessible and striking collection approaching violence from many different perspectives from renowned academics and political theorists. The Judith Butler section was a stand-out to me, but this was a great introduction to all these thinkers, ones I am more familiar with and some less so.
And today we will be talking about a collection of introductions to philosophical thoughts about violence entitled Portraits of Violence published in Canada in association with New Internationalist By Between the Lines.

This was a book I picked up for last October's Get Graphic readathon, didn't end up reading it because that was also Canadian Thanksgiving, but picked up again thanks to a comment from Alen Bacco asking about it. Because I'm totally not a horrible youtube who takes forever to repl
Sara Lissa
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Really important primer to the great thinkers that make us questions the beliefs around the inevitability of violence, or the pill of realism we are forced to swallow. Highly recommended if you truly believe that we can imagine a place without social classes, violence, domination, and needless suffering and want some theoretical frameworks to discuss it.
Jan 13, 2018 rated it liked it
If you enjoy graphic novels about politics, Noam Chomsky, and poorly drawn pictures of Barack Obama this book is for you!

I’m not kidding. The illustrations of Obama are reeeeealllly bad. One looked like a black Ben Stiller and the other as if Sméagol and George Bush had a Benjamin Button baby, left out in the sun for most of its life. (pp. 115 and 124 if you’re interested)

In all seriousness I was a bit disappointed with this one. I love Brad Evans and his political theory but this book sorta fel
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Portraits of Violence by Brad Evans and Sean Michael Wilson is a wonderfully concise introduction to ten important thinkers on the topic of violence.

Each thinker is given ten pages and while the style is text heavy there is a fine balance between letting the words speak for themselves while also having the illustrations highlight and sometimes give nuance to the words. This is not, nor was it intended to be, a thorough analysis of each thinker's thoughts. Even when multiple works are mentioned t
David Laurin
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s great as an introduction to each thinker, but if you already have an idea what any given thinker it all about, there isn’t much new to be gleaned.
Jul 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
A great book and a great presentation.
Loved parts from S. Sontag, E. Said, H. Arendt.
More people should read such books.
Mat Davies
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is s solid piece of work.

I was excited to read this book as someone who appreciates the medium of the graphic novel and some of the thinkers in this book. The artwork fits the subjects which are explored here. And the choice of thinkers are also solid decisions. I think that fundamentally, sharing important information, ideas and works through alternative mediums is a great idea.

Too often, what we term academic or intellectual thinkers, ideas or works are either inaccessible or kept with
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have been reading and citing works from Freire, Foucault, Said, Chomsky, and Butler for a decade, and it is these ideologies along with many others, such as Maxine Greene, that inform my historical lens as well as my personal curriculum ideology. What I have not yet found a way to do is expose these thinkers to my high school students in a way that is meaningful, memorable, and engaging. This book is perfect for exposing high school students to critical theory as we study topics in history. I ...more
Apr 03, 2018 rated it liked it
A good attempt at making critical theory more accessible. Each chapter introduces the work of an influential academic and the different ways they conceptualise violence. It was insightful and relevant because most theories were unpacked using contemporary examples (e.g. the War on Terror, Zapatista resistance in Mexico). However, some of the text was too wordy, dry and highbrow for a graphic novel.
Jake Powell
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
A wonderful introduction to a few important thinkers, and I appreciated how visual metaphors were used to explain complex ideas in a way that I think will help me remember them. Quick but thought-provoking read, and glad to have this launching point for further engagement with these authors and ideas!
Joseph Young
Very wordy for a graphic novel. Each section provides a short summary of part of a revolutionary author's works. Makes me want to read more philosophy, but with the different art styles and approaches by each author, it feels like an ill-fitting mosaic.
Brandon Montgomery
There needs to be more books like this.
Probably a case of "it's not you, it's me". I'm not massive on political theory (surprisingly), but I borrowed this from a friend and thought it'd be a quick read. I agreed with 90% of the ideas presented, and the art was well done, but it took me a bit longer to finish than I anticipated and I had that finalllllllly moment when I actually did.
Daniel Flowerday
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Meme Frimpong
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Dec 05, 2016
Danielle Bryan
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
Though it's rather difficult to describe myself as having 'enjoyed' this book given the subject matter, I found it an interesting and engaging read. Some chapters captured me more than others, and I feel that the style of delivery works better in some cases than others, but overall I think it was well worth the read. Particularly notable for it's chapter on the 'banality of evil'.
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“Politik olanı kendi içinde daha şiirsel açıdan düşünerek, yaşamanın daha iyi biçimlerini ve daha iyi bir geleceği tahayyül etmek hepimizin görevi.” 2 likes
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