'Antonio Giustozzi has written another terrific book. He places coercion and violence within the framework of the state-building literature and engages the critical issue of the monopoly of violence head on. His discussions of elite bargaining and its relations to coercion in civil war and internal crises, the role of political policing, the political micromanagement of population control, and the origins and development of policing are all full of original insights and thought-provoking arguments. Moreover, Giustozzi's mastery of history - unusual among most social scientists - shines through as he illustrates his contentions with wonderfully apt examples from the past. This book is a major contribution to the field of security studies and, just as importantly, will be a joy to read even for those who may lack the specialist's fascination with the topic.' - Zoltan Barany, Frank C. Erwin, Jr. Professor of Government, University of Texas 'The Art of Coercion is a superb addition to the literature: erudite, wide-ranging in its historical examples, and neatly structured. Its arguments about the typically ruthless 'primitive accumulation of a monopoly of violence' and the institutional and political challenges of this and of maintaining a monopoly once achieved, are of more than merely scholarly appeal. The evidence and argument have profoundly challenging implications for all those involved in interventions to 'build stability overseas' or interested in conflict prevention and state building.' - Christopher Cramer, Professor of the Political Economy of Development, SOAS
About the Author
Antonio Giustozzi is a Research Fellow at the Crisis States Research Centre, London School of Economics. His two most recent books, both published by Hurst, are Empires of Mud: Wars and Warlordism in Afghanistan and Decoding the New Taliban: Insights from the Afghan Field, which he edited.