One needs a strong stomach to read Dylann Roof's manifesto, posted to his website The Last Rhodesian shortly before he murdered nine people praying at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina. I have appended it at the end of this brief essay. It is invaluable for understanding him and for understanding the anthropology of evil. If we can suppress feelings of nausea and outrage over his overt racism, we will find an account of an intellectual journey, told from the time when, as a high school student, he had stray thoughts and intuitions but "no real understanding," through "the event that truly awakened" him (George Zimmerman's shooting of Trayvon Martin), followed by his subsequent study of the problem ("I researched deeper"). Well into this research, he "found out about the Jewish problem"; finally he became "completely racially aware."Open PDF To Read More
For several years I have taught a course titled The Anthropology of Evil. I chose the term “anthropology,” not to indicate a restriction to the study of evil among primitive tribes, but rather to widen the lens to take in every relevant discipline: history, philosophy, theology, psychology, sociology, and current events.