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Structural violence
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Structural violence

Structural violence, a term which was first used in the 1970s and which has commonly been ascribed to Johan Galtung, denotes a form of violence which corresponds with the systematic ways in which a given regime prevents individuals from achieving their full potential. Institutionalized racism, sexism and ageism are examples of this.

In 1984, Petra Kelly wrote (in her first book, Fighting for Hope):

A third of the 2,000 million people in the developing countries are starving or suffering from malnutrition. Twenty-five per cent of their children die before their fifth birthday [] Less than 10 per cent of the 15 million children who died this year had been vaccinated against the six most common and dangerous children's diseasess. Vaccinating every child costs 3 per child. But not doing so costs us five million lives a year. These are classic examples of structural violence.

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