A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

The Psychology of Terrorism


The coordinated attacks attributed to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS; also called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL) across Paris that left 130 civilians dead, the massacre of 2,000 in Baga, Nigeria, by the Boko Haram, or the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013 that killed 3 and injured 264 are but a few examples of the terrorist attacks that, in recent years, have become commonplace across the world. Such occurrences, unfortunately, show no signs of relenting, and they present a particularly vexing challenge to global security (Zarif, 2015). The effort toward combating terrorist and terrorist organizations requires clear military and policing involvement, aimed at protecting innocent civilians and defeating the extremists on the ground. Equally clear is the fact that psychologists also have a seat at this table. Insights gleaned from current empirical studies focused on terrorism, as well as decades of research into psychological processes underlying terrorist activity, are important weapons in the fight against violent extremism.

Publication Information

Full Citation:

Webber, David and Arie W. Kruglanski. 2017. "The Psychology of Terrorism." In Aggression and Violence: A Social Psychological Perspective. New York: Routledge. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=cMBCDQAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PT11&ots=oUdwNVycz9&sig=T_gIi_pFjMlWgmWC0aer2leKxGw#v=onepage&q&f=false

START Author(s):