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Plundering Boys: A Cultural Criminology Assessment on the Power of Cultural Heritage as a Cause for Plunder in Armed Conflicts along History

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Chapter Summary

This chapter starts by linking plundering to Cohen's definition in his study on delinquent boys. After carefully describing plundering in all three historical contexts, and using documented sources, cultural elements can be found that explain how this crime is not based on opportunism but rather there is a rationale behind it, most of the time linked to the glorious symbolic potential art has. The main justification theme also can be moved to the public sphere. In Roman times it implied the glory of the empire, while in recent times, with the advent of Nationalisms, it implied the glory of the nation. The power of culture drove all the campaigns explained in the chapter. It can be argued that, regarding art, Gaius Verres, Napoleon and Hitler behaved like Cohen's delinquent boys while stealing a pair of sneakers.

Keywords:Cohen; Gaius Verres; Hitler; Napoleon; plundering boys

10.1163/9789004251427_017
/content/books/b9789004251427_017
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