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In this review of Austin Sarat’s important book When the State Kills: Capital Punishment and the American Condition, the reviewer invokes Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan to inform our understanding of the killing state. Because capital punishment is carried out pursuant to the democratic processes, the execution involves us all, done as it is in our name. Those committed to the end of the killing state, and to the end of the violent hierarchies that allow the killing state to exist, will find Surat’s book “a valuable articulation of a committed and responsible approach to the problems of our time.”