Painfotainment by Dan Carlin
(Hardcore History #61)
An exploration of one of mankind's dark sides – pain used as spectacle, and pain as punishment. Executions. Gladiator battles. The guillotine. Carlin surveys the scene from the perspective of the executioner, the audience, and the person being executed. He uses lots of primary sources, and delivers it with his trademark dramatic style. I like his exploration of the decline of executions and the reasons behind it too.