Violence in a Homeostatic System - the Case of Honduras

TitelViolence in a Homeostatic System - the Case of Honduras
Typ der PublikationBook
Untertitel / SerientitelPRIF-Report on the escalation of violence in Honduras
AutorInnenZinecker, H, Hughes, K
BandNo. 83
Anzahl Seiten46 pp.
VerlagHessische Stiftung Friedens- und Konfliktforschung (HSFK)

In Central America there are currently three countries with high levels of violence and two with low levels. Honduras, along with El Salvador and Guatemala, belongs to the countries with high levels of violence, while Nicaragua and Costa Rica have relatively low levels of violence in the context of Central America. After El Salvador, Honduras is the country with the highest incidence of violence not only in Central America, but in Latin America as a whole. Honduras has a homicide rate which is five times higher than the world average. This high rate refers to a violence which is virtually exclusively violent crime, and which has nothing whatsoever to do with civil wars, revolutions or other armed political conflicts.
The report begins by discussing empirical findings on violence, before going on to look for the causes of the present violence. It takes as its hypothesis, the fact that a particularly significant cause of the high levels of violence is a state security sector which is failing to function as it should, but which nonetheless does not reflect any fundamental failure of the state as a whole. A homeostatic system which was traditionally characteristic of Honduras operated in the past in such as way as essentially to exclude violence. Nowadays, however, the system integrates violence as one of its sub-systems.
The report ends with the hypothesis, explosive in terms of development and peace policy, that it is a mistake to believe that poverty must first of all be tackled so as automatically to bring about the containment of violence as a by-product. Not only war and terrorism, but also violent crime generate extremely high levels of violence and can become a security risk well beyond continental boundaries.

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