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A holistic concept of violence

Professor Johan Galtung explains violence as the unnecessary insult of basic needs.

In the video above, Professor Johan Galtung describes violence as the unnecessary insult of basic needs.

Basic needs are requirements for living which are shared by all human beings:

  • Survival needs
  • Well-being needs
  • Identity needs
  • Freedom needs

It’s pretty clear that these basic human needs can be violated by physical force or power abuse – this is probably what first comes to our minds when we think about violence. This is what Professor Galtung calls “direct violence”. However, there are other forms of violence, too.

Reflection point

Can you think of other forms of violence? Do you think these forms also harm and even kill people?
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