Symbolism in Terrorism: Motivation, Communication, and Behavior
The symbolic value of targets is what differentiates terrorism from other forms of extreme violence. Terrorism is designed to inflict deep psychological wounds on an enemy rather than demolish its material ability to fight. The September 11, 2001 attacks, for example, demonstrated the power of symbolism. The World Trade Center was targeted by Al Qaeda because the Twin Towers epitomized Western civilization, U.S. imperialism, financial success, modernity, and freedom.
The symbolic character of terrorism is the focus of this textbook. A comprehensive analysis, it incorporates descriptions, definitions, case studies, and theories. Each chapter focuses on a specific dimension of symbolism in terrorism and explains the contexts and processes that involve the main actors as well as the symbolism of both the purposes and targets of terrorism. Also discussed are new religious movements, which represent another important aspect of terrorism, such as Aum Shinrikyo, the Japanese cult that used sarin gas in the Tokyo subway in 1995.
Over forty areas of symbolism are covered throughout the chapters, including physical and non-physical symbolism, linguistic symbolism, the social construction of reality, rituals, myths, performative violence, iconoclasm, brand management, logos, semiotics, new media, and the global village. This allows for an in-depth examination of many issues, such as anti-globalization, honor killing, religious terrorism, suicide terrorism, martyrdom, weapons, female terrorism, public communication, visual motifs, and cyberspace. Main concepts are clearly defined, and followed by theory illustrated by international case studies. Chapter summaries, key points, review questions, research and practice suggestions are recurring components as well. This groundbreaking text encompasses all major aspects of symbolism in terrorism and will be an essential resource for anyone studying terrorism.
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Allah Arabic audience Aum Shinrikyo behavior beheading belief bombings brand caliphate chapter 11 Chechen Combating Terrorism Center communication concept Conflict & Terrorism context create cult cultural death enemy ethnic example female terrorists gender global Hamas Hezbollah Hindu holy Honor Killing human identity ideology individuals interaction International interpretation Intifada Irish Islamic Islamist Israeli jihad jihadist Journal keffiyeh Khalistan leaders martyrdom martyrs meaning metaphor militant movement Muhammad murals Muslim Brotherhood myth National object one’s Osama bin Laden Palestinian Perspectives political propaganda Qaeda Qur’an rape reality recruits refers Religion religious Rhetorical ritual role Routledge sacred Salafi Semiotics September 11 Shia Shia Islam Shining Path Sikh social society strategy Studies in Conflict suicide attacks suicide bombers Suicide Terrorism Symbolic Interactionism symbols Tamil Tigers target territories terrorist terrorist attacks terrorist group terrorist organization Theory traditional ummah victims videos violence visual motifs weapons websites Western women York