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Download e-book for kindle: A Pack of Lies: Towards a Sociology of Lying by J. A. Barnes

By J. A. Barnes

ISBN-10: 0511520980

ISBN-13: 9780511520983

ISBN-10: 0521453763

ISBN-13: 9780521453769

ISBN-10: 0521459788

ISBN-13: 9780521459785

Defining lies as statements which are meant to lie to, this publication considers the contexts within which humans inform lies and explores the results. the writer appears at societies with detailed non secular and moral traditions the place mendacity is the norm. He additionally exhibits how teenagers gather the means to lie at an early age, and research while it's acceptable to take action. In end, Professor Barnes argues that folks are likely to inform the reality, for except the query of morality, there are pragmatic purposes for doing so.

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Counter-espionage must be a continuous process, an activity which persists in time of peace as well as in time of war ... we are fully entitled to adopt counterespionage measures against any power which indulges in espionage, whether that power be for the time friend or foe ... To tackle enemy espionage (whoever the enemy may turn out to be) it is therefore of paramount importance to keep a firm hold on the enemy's own system of agents and informers. Knowledge of his methods, knowledge of his intentions, and knowledge of the personnel of his organisation are all vitally necessary.

But on the other hand, if several lay witnesses offer identical stories, they are likely to be suspected of having been rehearsed in presenting a false account; a slight amount of divergence and vagueness adds verisimilitude. Identical stories presented by police witnesses, however, are perceived as testifying to their professionalism and accuracy of observation. According to the British Police training manual (English 1986:100), a police officer 'could be classed as a professional witness' and is expected to present facts 'correctly, impartially, and respectfully'.

A basic lie purports to be 'objective truth'; the fact that it is not becomes an open secret shared by the collaborators. Bailey illustrates the concept with ethnographic data from India, but does not limit its use to peasant societies. Hobbes' Leviathan and Plato's Republic, he says, can be read as basic lies (Bailey 1991:83,91-92). They are 'charters for repressive regulation', and the collaborators are, it seems, the members of the elite who propagate the charters to legitimate their dominance.

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A Pack of Lies: Towards a Sociology of Lying by J. A. Barnes

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