Advanced Essay #4 Motivation of Violence

Reflecting on my paper, I believe I picked specific points to focus on which made analyzing it pretty easily. I thought it'd be unique to have two different pictures that backed up the two themes I had. My sources were pretty diverse also.


Agunya, 15 (On the right), teaches his little brother Mumbri, 13 (On the left) how to load and aim a semi-automatic weapon after finding their entire family slaughtered by an Angolan terrorist group. “Eu quero matar cada governante Angolano que vejo…” I want to kill every Angolan official I see. Mumbri’s life changed forever after this moment…

Experiencing the annihilation of loved ones changes you in all aspects of life. The feelings of hatred, ignorance, sadness, and reminiscing all brewed together is a recipe for disaster in the streets of Chicago and in the battlefields of Angola. To experience the same tragedy Agunya and Mumbri have and not want to retaliate with the same force or more, takes a very noble and conscientious being. German psychological scientist, Mario Gollwitzer conducted a study where people were partnered up with another person anonymously in different rooms. The partners were asked a series of trivia questions and for every question they got right, they’d win tickets. At the end, the scientist divided the tickets up evenly but told partner #1 that that partner #2 opted to take all of the tickets. The scientist gave the partner #1 the chance to either opt to take all the tickets or split them after finding out what partner #2 decided to do. 60% decided they wanted all of the tickets because partner #2 wasn’t planning on sharing. That same 60% decided to write  notes to their anonymous partners all with smart comments like “You didn’t want to split the tickets so I’m be selfish back and take all of the tickets for myself.” This experiment showed that when people feel unappreciated, retaliation  is a very technique used as an attempt to restore that feeling of appreciation. Agunya and Mumbri suffer from a feeling not being valued. The fact that their family was slaughtered and no one answered for it will evoke this feeling. So as a result of this, the two brothers are on the hunt to retaliate with the same amount or more force to restore that feeling of mattering. Retaliating also provides them with the opportunity to make the Angolans feel the pain that they feel or worst; which is also a desired goal.



Experiencing the annihilation of loved ones changes you in all aspects of life. This change is physical, emotional and most of all mental. The feelings of hatred, ignorance, sadness, and reminiscing all brewed together is a recipe for disaster in the streets of Chicago and in the battlefields of Angola. Martin Luther King once said “As I have walked among the desperate, rejected, and angry young men, I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they asked, and rightfully so, “What about war?” They asked if our own nation wasn’t using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today: my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of the hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.” This quote addresses the most important reason people become numb to violence in mass numbers. To know that policeman and soldiers are awarded medals like distinguished shooters badge, and expert rifleman badges on a consistent basis for honestly killing people brings a sort of positive vibe to violence as a whole. So for a kid in Chicago to murder someone who sells drugs in his neighborhood and be prosecuted for it, is really hypocritical. He eliminated someone that was a threat to the well-being of his community. Isn’t that the same thing soldiers do and police officers do? Yes it is.

Zulifikar Ali Butto, the Prime Minister of Pakistan once said ““We(Pakistan) will eat grass, even go hungry, but we will get one of our own (Atom bomb).... We have no other choice!” Now let’s think about this… The Prime Minister of an entire country feels as though there is no other way to survive in this world but to acquire something with the power to wipe out a whole city.  If  someone with the power of a Prime Minister believes that surviving in this world is only realistic if you’re able to conduct your own amount of violence, what are people in Chicago who live in poverty supposed to think?

Work Cited:

"Quotes About Retaliation." (24 Quotes). Web. 21 Mar. 2016.

"Military Ranks." Military Ranks. Web. 21 Mar. 2016.

"Military Awards, Medals, & Decorations." Web. 21 Mar. 2016.

Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Web. 21 Mar. 2016.

"The Complicated Psychology of Revenge." Association for Psychological Science RSS. Web. 21 Mar. 2016.

"The Law of Retaliation." The Law of Retaliation. Web. 21 Mar. 2016.