Cover: Making Monsters: The Uncanny Power of Dehumanization, from Harvard University PressCover: Making Monsters in HARDCOVER

Making Monsters

The Uncanny Power of Dehumanization

Product Details


$27.95 • £24.95 • €25.95

ISBN 9780674545564

Publication Date: 10/28/2021

Academic Trade

352 pages

5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches


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Illuminating… It is cutting insights…along with thoughtful speculations on how dehumanization is nurtured—through racism, ideology, and the power of hierarchical structures—that makes this such an invaluable study, particularly at this time.—Bill Marx, Arts Fuse

In this book, David Livingstone Smith’s concern is how human beings can come to conceive of other human beings ‘as subhuman creatures’—a phenomenon that is not limited to a single culture or a specific, isolated historical period… A very worthwhile read.—Linda Roland Danil, Human Rights Quarterly

No one is doing better work on the psychology of dehumanization than David Livingstone Smith, and he brings to bear an impressive depth and breadth of knowledge in psychology, philosophy, history, and anthropology. Making Monsters is a landmark achievement which will frame all future work on the psychology of dehumanization.—Eric Schwitzgebel, author of A Theory of Jerks and Other Philosophical Misadventures

A fascinating and rich book that combines philosophical and historical sophistication. Even—indeed especially—those who disagree markedly with Smith’s views about dehumanization, like me, will benefit from wrestling with his lucid, important arguments.—Kate Manne, author of Entitled: How Male Privilege Hurts Women

Making Monsters is a wonderful book in so many ways. It is thoughtful, scholarly, and accessible, comprehensive and compelling—a tremendous accomplishment that will enrich our understanding of some of the darker part of our human condition.—Lori Gruen, author of Entangled Empathy

Making Monsters is a historically informed and theoretically rich exploration of how and why we dehumanize one another. Scientifically sophisticated and interdisciplinary in scope, Smith’s vivid use of examples transforms his book from a valuable scholarly treatise into an urgent and timely manifesto.—Charlotte Witt, author of The Metaphysics of Gender

If you’ve ever wondered “How could they?” David Livingstone Smith’s brilliant Making Monsters will help you understand the callous brutality of race crimes and the psychology of dehumanization. With a steady hand, Smith leads us through a wide swath of the worst of human crimes and distills into his own insightful account the research explaining the social and psychological mechanisms that enable ordinary people to do monstrous deeds. This illuminating book is a major contribution to the urgent project of understanding the psychology of dehumanization in the hope of preventing future atrocities.—Lynne Tirrell, University of Connecticut

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