Warfare and Society: Archaeological and Social Anthropological Perspectives

By Ton Otto; Henrik Thrane et al. | Go to book overview

14 Warfare and the State:
An Introduction

HENRIK THRANE

This section spans a wide field in space and time, nevertheless covering the same subject, namely the relationship of warfare to the state. It ranges from Europe to Africa and the Pacific. Claessen’s article (chapter 15) serves as introduction with its general theoretical discussion of one of the main issues of the War & Society project. War as part of the state concept is a commonly accepted idea. Indeed it has been maintained time and again that the logistics and organisation of warfare were crucial elements in the rise of states, the question being the identity of the prime mover. War in pre-state or non-state societies was sometimes even seen as a methodological misunderstanding.

We still grapple with the proper way of distinguishing war from other organised forms of violence. Several definitions have been suggested (Turney-High 1971; Keegan 1996: 89ff). For archaeologists these are somewhat academic discussions. We only have scarce and sometimes (most often) very particular evidence of the scale of violence in prehistoric societies. The evidence needed to define the level of violence as one proper for war – in Claessen’s definition (chapter 15): ‘legitimised and organised deadly violence between centralised polities (states and paramount chiefdoms)’ – is hardly ever conclusive before we reach proto-history. While legitimisation is not accessible in archaeological evidence, the deadly consequences sometimes are – cp. the section ‘Warfare, Rituals and Mass Graves’. Considering the difficulties we have in defining when chiefdoms arose and what kind they were – not to mention paramount chiefdoms or early states – we are left with general statements based upon precisely such deliberations as those presented in this section. We have to take our clues from the ethnographical and historical interpretations of, to us very late, phenomena such as the (early) states and similar advanced social systems. This leaves out 99% of the history of mankind. Our difficulties as prehistorians transpire from several sections in this book.

-211-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Warfare and Society: Archaeological and Social Anthropological Perspectives
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 557

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.