Political Violence in America
2 volumes [2 volumes]
by Lori Cox Han and Tomislav Han, Editors
March 2022, 657pp, 7x10
2 volumes, ABC-CLIO

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-6341-7
$214, £165, 187€, A294
Please contact your preferred distributor for pricing.
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-6342-4
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A February 2021 poll conducted by the conservative American Enterprise Institute’s Survey Center on American Life found that nearly 40% of Republican respondents and 22% of Democrats surveyed think that political violence is justifiable—findings that the director of the Survey Center described as “pretty scary.”

This multivolume encyclopedia surveys America's long and troubled history of political violence from the colonial era to the present, with a particular emphasis on factors driving political violence and intimidation in the United States in the 21st century.

Americans like to think of their nation as one grounded in high-minded democratic ideals and peaceful transitions of power. In reality, though, American politics has been heavily laced with expressions of violence and intimidation since the nation’s very inception, which saw a campaign of violent rebellion against British rule. Since then, America has endured the deaths of four presidents from assassination; a four-year civil war; racist attacks on civil rights activists and ordinary citizens; deadly clashes between protesting citizens and law enforcement; sustained campaigns of violence against marginalized populations seeking greater political or economic equality; politically motivated mass shootings; and, on January 6, 2021, the shocking spectacle of a politically motivated mob attack on the U.S. Capitol.

How and why did these events transpire? What were the root causes? What factors are driving political violence and intimidation in America today? And are there changes that we could make to our country’s political discourse that would reduce such outbreaks of bloodshed? This authoritative multivolume encyclopedia provides answers to all these questions and more.


  • An insightful and wide-ranging introduction that includes a discussion of the fundamental characteristics of political violence to familiarize readers with basic concepts and historical trends
  • Approximately 250 encyclopedia entries across topics as wide-ranging as assassinations, labor unrest, ethnic and racial violence, rioting, domestic terrorism, police brutality, racism, and social control
  • A primary document collection to help readers better understand key topics and events
  • A chronology of events in American history that have been marred by politically motivated bloodshed, intimidation, and repression
Lori Cox Han, PhD, is professor of political science and Doy B. Henley Chair of American Presidential Studies at Chapman University in Orange, CA. She is the author of numerous books, including Presidents and the American Presidency and ABC-CLIO's Hatred of America's Presidents: Personal Attacks on the White House from Washington to Trump.

Tomislav Han, PhD, is an independent scholar and author of The Transformation of Aristotelian Political Epistemology in Eighteenth-Century American Constitutional Discourse and Handbook to American Democracy.


"This work is accessible to high school students, and for that reason it is recommended."—Booklist, July 29, 2022

"This effort provides a digestible collection that students or interested researchers might find helpful in an academic setting."—Library Journal, January 20, 2023
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