Exploring the Variation in Levels of Drug-related Violence





Violence, Crime, Drugs, Illegal Trade, Rio de Janeiro


This article reviews the literature on the relationship between the illegal drug trade and violence. The literature review examines the characteristics and nature of violence in the illegal drug trade, distinguishing its systemic elements from the violence of individuals. There is a growing literature looking at variations in levels of violence; some of these explanations compete, while others could be complementary. We lack an overarching theoretical framework that integrates complementary arguments into a general causal argument. The conclusion discusses is the theoretical, methodological, and empirical challenges to developing a general framework for analyzing violence in the illegal drug trade. A general framework guides analysis across all cases, regardless of region, drug, or level of violence. What differs among empirical cases are the values of the causal variables in the distinct context, not the relationship among those variables; variation in levels of violence is the result of differing values among the causal variables. The conclusion ends by suggesting avenues for research.  


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Biografia do Autor

David R. Mares, University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Distinguished Professor / Institute of the Americas Endowed Chair for Inter-American Affairs

Professor Mares holds the Institute of the Americas Endowed Chair for Inter-American Affairs at UCSD and is also the Baker Institute Scholar for Latin American Energy Studies at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Rice University. Mares was previously Professor of the Centro de Estudios Internacionales at El Colegio de Mexico, and has been a Fulbright Professor at the Universidad de Chile and Visiting Professor at FLACSO-Ecuador. He is the author or editor of twelve books and his publications have appeared in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian and Chinese in journals such as Comparative Politics, International Organization, International Interactions, Security Studies, Latin American Research Review, Foro Internacional, Estudios Internacionales and Fuerzas Armadas y Sociedad. Mares was awarded the Alfred Stepan Lifetime Achievement Award by the Latin American Studies Association in Defense, Public Security and Democracy in 2021. 


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Como Citar

Mares, D. R. (2022). Exploring the Variation in Levels of Drug-related Violence. Revista Brasileira De Estudos De Defesa, 8(2). https://doi.org/10.26792/rbed.v8n2.2021.75271