Terrorism Studies

Episode of: Thinking Allowed

< Back to Thinking Allowed
Jul 10, 201328m
Terrorism Studies
Jul 10 '1328m
Play Episode

'Terrorism Studies' - how it emerged as a new academic field in the post 9/11 world. Laurie Taylor talks to Harvard social scientist, Lisa Stampinitzky, about the themes of her new book "Disciplining Terror: How Experts Invented 'Terrorism' ". She argues that terrorists are now constructed as pathological and evil personalities who are beyond our understanding, unlike the pre 70s era when the acts of political violence, that we now call terrorism, were seen as the work of rational actors with strategic goals. This transformation of political violence into terrorism is held to have led to the current 'war on terror'. Drawing on archival research as well as interviews with terrorism experts, she traces the struggles through which experts made terrorism, and terrorism made experts. John Bew, a British expert on terrorism, considers and contests the arguments. Also, Christine Fair discusses a groundbreaking study which finds that support for political violence in Pakistan is lower amongst the poor than the middle classes. Producer: Jayne Egerton.

0:00 / 0:00