Political Violence in America: Historical Flashpoints and Modern-Day Trends

ABC-CLIO. Mar. 2022. 657p. ed. by Lori Cox Han & Tomislav Han. ISBN 9781440863417. $204. REF
In this ambitious two-volume project, the coauthors of Handbook to American Democracy team up again to bring a timely collection covering more than 200 items on political violence from more than 65 scholars. A 25-page introduction first defines political violence and then discusses how and why it is used, with a broad survey of the United States region from 1617 to the present. Each entry ranges from two to five pages, concluding with recommended sources. Most topics are within the past 50 years, while 30 primary sources equally represent the distant past. One challenge with this type of reference is determining what to include or omit, while remaining comprehensive. Admittedly, the work covers many important personalities and events but appears to omit others of relevance, such as Edward Snowden, who was behind the biggest intelligence leak in the National Security Agency’s history. This title can potentially serve as a springboard to further readings. Overall, this effort provides a digestible collection that students or interested researchers might find helpful in an academic setting.
VERDICT This encyclopedia may help high school and lower-level higher education students seeking rudimentary information about specific political violence topics, but it may not be needed in most libraries.
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