David O. Friedrichs



On Resisting State Crime: Conceptual and Contextual Issues

The project of “resisting state crime” generates challenges and conundrums on many different levels. Historically, the forces that drive the major forms of state crimes — and genocide most notably — have tended to be infinitely more potent than forces of resistance, narrowly defined (defensively). More often than not, resistance efforts have been crushed. Further, much of the history of the resistance to crimes of states might be characterized as history for its own sake. What is needed instead is a more consciously “applied” form of historical analysis and a more consciously present- and future-oriented form of analysis that factors in present and emerging conditions. To make a criminology of resistance, specifically to state crime, a worthwhile initiative the author begins with definitional clarifications. The article attempts to deconstruct and examine the key terms that arise in his endeavor: “resist,” “societies,” and “communities,” “costs,” and “state crime” itself.

typology, resistance, state crime, prospective criminology

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 36, No. 3 (2009): 4-27


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