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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Victim Identity Model: The Pathology of Apithological Organized Collective Violent Conflict
by Tomlin, Jeremy Kane, D.S.S., National American University, 2019, 115; 13808723
Abstract (Summary)

Conflict theories usually focus on: the international system of anarchistic self-help, innate human violent nature, the legal framework of warfare, the clash of civilizations, violent mass movements, or a combination of demographic, economic, sociological, and psychological factors in attempting to explain the causes of group violence. However, these theories do not explain the totality of observed phenomena on collective violence, a typical requirement for theoretical acceptance. In major organized conflict models espoused in existing literature, there exists some percentage of inter or intra-state organized violence that does not fit these existing models.

This grounded theory development process sought to integrate many of these theories into a holistic model of group violence that focuses on an element often overlooked, the vicarious victim. The Victim Identity Model is a sociological extension of both the psychological Victim Identity construct and Waller’s social categorization theory (Waller, 2007). The main hypothesis is that a prerequisite for organized forms of collective violence is a motivated organizational leadership that convinces his or her associated in-group followers of their ingroup “victim status”. This in-group vicarious victimization legitimizes the stated retaliatory causes of the group, subsumes individual responsibility to the group, and enables psychologically normal in-group members to commit violence against their perceived aggressors.

Psychologists have studied the Victim Identity in individuals as a type of psychological pathology, but it has never been applied directly to an entire demographic group. This study or research seeks to reinterpret accepted theories of warfare in light of the Victim Identity Model when applied to different group units of measure and historical timeframes.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Nimon, Harry
Commitee: Lucas, Susan, Nolan, Frank
School: National American University
Department: Strategic Security
School Location: United States -- South Dakota
Source: DAI-A 80/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Law enforcement, Behavioral psychology, Military studies
Keywords: Conflict, Peacekeeping, Security, Victim, Violence, Warfare
Publication Number: 13808723
ISBN: 978-1-392-16327-6
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