★ ICM Highlight London Book Fair 2011
UK Granta (2011, 256 pages)
US Metropolitan Books
Origins and History of the Passions of War.
Granta published Barbara Ehrenreich’s 1997 classic groundbreaking investigation into the roots of war, with a new afterword relating her argument to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in the UK in April 2011.
A New York Times Notable Book.
In Blood Rites, Barbara Ehrenreich confronts the mystery of the human attraction to violence: What draws our species to war and even makes us see it as a kind of sacred undertaking? Blood Rites takes us on an original journey from the elaborate human sacrifices of the ancient world to the carnage and holocaust of twentieth-century "total war." Sifting through the fragile records of prehistory, Ehrenreich discovers the wellspring of war in an unexpected place--not in a "killer instinct" unique to the males of our species but in the blood rites early humans performed to reenact their terrifying experience of predation by stronger carnivores.
Brilliant in conception, rich in scope, Blood Rites is a monumental work that will transform our understanding of the greatest single threat to human life.