Violence as Pathology? Irreconsilable Ideals

Elegy for Ywain son of Marro

Quicker than to the field of blood

Than to a wedding

Quicker to the raven’s feast

Than to a burial


A.O.H Jarman, The Goddodin



On Men of Science

“The necessary knowledge for a high position in military action is therefore distinguished by this, that by observation, therefore by study and reflection, it is only to be attained through a special talent which as an intellectual instinct understands how to extract from the phenomena of life only the essence or spirit, as bees do the honey from the flowers; and that it is also to be gained by experience of life as well as by study and reflection. Life will never bring forth a Newton or an Euler by its rich teachings, but it may bring forth great calculators in War, such as Conde’ or Frederick.

It is therefore not necessary that, in order to vindicate the intellectual dignity of military activity, we should resort to untruth and silly pedantry.”

General von Clausewitz, 45. Of The Nature of This Knowledge

“Durch Nacht und Blut Zum Licht”

“We see, therefore, how, from the commencement, the absolute, the mathematical as it is called, nowhere finds any sure basis in the calculations in the Art of War; and that from the outset there is a play of possibilities, probabilities, good and bad luck, which spreads about with all the coarse and fine threads of its web, and makes War of all branches of human activity the most like a gambling game.”


General Carl von Clausewitz, On War

Eat This

The Consumption of Billy Graham

“You know what violence is? Violence is American Professional Wrestling. And I am going to introduce this man to wrestling . I am going to introduce this man to American style wrestling. He’s from Poland right?… He doesn’t know what real violence is, he does not know what real broken bones are and pulled ligaments and ripped tendons and popped cartilages. I am going to introduce the man to violence. To pain. I am going to teach the man how to say uncle. Understand what I am talking about?……… I am going to bury my fist; do you know what a fist sandwich is? … Salt and pepper, tomatoes, lettuce, ketchup. This sandwich, I am going to bust his teeth out and bloody his nose. It’s going to be violence. I am coming.”


“Eating prohibitions and obligations thus seem to be theoretically equivalent means of ‘denoting significance’ in a logical system some or all whose elements are edible species”

Pre-Fight Speech by American Wrestler Billy Graham

Claude Levi Struass, The Savage Mind

Dissolving Thought : The Sporting Shooter

Because agents apprehend objects through the schemes of perception and appreciation of their habitus, it would be naive to suppose that all practitioners of the same sport (or any other practice) confer the same meaning on their practice or even, strictly speaking, that they are practicing the same practice.  It can easily be shown that the different classes do not agree on the profits expected from sport, be they specific physical profits such as effects on the external body, like slimness, elegance or viable muscles, and on the internal body, like health or relaxation; or extrinsic profits, such as social relationships a sport may facilitate, or possible economic or social advantages. And, though there are cases in which the dominant function of the practice is reasonable clearly designated, one is practically never entitled to assume that the different classes expect the same thing from the practice….

Only a methodical analysis of the variations in the function and meaning conferred on the different sporting activities will enable one to escape from abstract formal ‘typologies’ based (it is the law of the genre) on universalizing the researchers personal experience; and to construct the table of the sociological pertinent features in terms which the agents (consciously or unconsciously) choose their sports.



Bourdieu, Distinction