Boredom, Colonialism and War
Dreams of Power and Agency, 1870-1930
By Erik Ringmar
Routledge – 2015 – 256 pages
Series: New International Relations
Why is liberalism unable to account for the violence which persists in modern society? Boredom, Colonialism and War is a wide ranging IR study which looks at the role of cutural systems in warfare, the modern condition and the failure of globalization to halt war through international free trade.
In an increasingly dissatisfied and bored modern society, the promise of violence acts as a powerful form of entertainment and restores a sense of agency. The dream of warfare provides empowerment; slowly, a cultural system is created that bypasses the effects of colonialism leading to globalization.
Through use of historical case studies on globalization and colonialism, these polemical authors provide an incisive analysis of contemporary international politics, international relations, and modern society.
1. Introduction: Boredom and Modernity 2. The 19th Century Part I: War as Cure 3. Boredom and the Fascination with Violence 4. World War One 5. The Aftermath to World War One 6. Fascination with Warfare in the 21st Century Part II: Boredom and Colonialism 7. The Colonies as Arenas of Heroic Action 8. How the West Was Won 9. Onwards and Upwards 10. Conclusions
Erik Ringmar is professor of Social and Cultural Studies at NCTU, Xinzhu, Taiwan. He has a PhD in political science from Yale University, taught at LSE in London for 12 years, and has published books with Cambridge UP, Routledge, Paradigm Publishers, and others. He is a faculty fellow at the Yale Center for Cultural Sociology.