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Eternal Return? Social Science Perspectives of 'Upstream' Terrorist Activities

Fussey, P (2013) 'Eternal Return? Social Science Perspectives of 'Upstream' Terrorist Activities.' Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology, 28 (2). 102 - 114. ISSN 0882-0783

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Abstract

The 9/11 attacks stimulated an unprecedented academic interest in the study of terrorism; bringing a range of new disciplinary perspectives, theoretical frameworks and empirical tools to the subject. Within a broad social science perspective, this paper seeks to draw on these cross-disciplinary resources to understand pre-attack terrorist activities. In doing so, the paper first reviews some of the key themes relating to the study of terrorism including (but not restricted to) empirical values, the duplication of knowledge, points of consensus, and the focus on individual and deterministic features. The paper then examines conceptualizations of 'terrorism as a process' as they relates to pre-attack activities and considers current analyses relating to this issue. Here, temporal features of attack cycles are particularly prominent. The third area of analysis draws from a range of social science disciplines - including environmental psychology, human geography, sociology and criminology - to investigate the prospects of furnishing these accounts with spatial detail. These discussions are organized by a number of overarching arguments. These include: the importance of inter-relationships between counter-terrorism practice and precise understandings of terrorist action; and of exercising caution over deterministic pathways of action and accounts that focus too heavily on the individual level of action. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
Depositing User: Users 161 not found.
Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2014 10:32
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2019 16:18
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/11440

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