Europeans tend to approach the problem of terrorism as a communal problem while the American administrations treat it as a political one. Thus instrumental and organizational theories of terrorism lauded in the United States neglect the cultural dimension of the phenomenon. Research shows, however, that terrorism must be understood as a result of a radicalization of cultural norms and values prevalent in extremist “subcultures” as well. This means that terrorists succeed not only by distancing themselves from the community as individuals and organizations, but by linking themselves to it as enthusiastic champions of cultural aspirations. This essay outlines the general contours of a cultural approach to the phenomenon of terrorism and contrasts it to instrumental and organizational approaches.
IOS Press, Inc.
6751 Tepper Drive
Clifton, VA 20124
Tel.: +1 703 830 6300
Fax: +1 703 830 2300 firstname.lastname@example.org
(Corporate matters and books only) IOS Press c/o Accucoms US, Inc.
For North America Sales and Customer Service
West Point Commons
Lansdale PA 19446
Tel.: +1 866 855 8967
Fax: +1 215 660 5042 email@example.com