Becoming a Terrorist

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Many myths surround terrorists and terrorism, but surely one of the most widely held is that terrorists are crazed fanatics: psychopaths who are completely immune to the suffering of their victims and who always remain ruthlessly committed to their cause. Like many myths, this one is easy to believe, yet is almost always completely untrue. Terrorism is a very emotive subject and terrorist groups have carried out atrocities of appalling scale and horror. The actors themselves can display a formidable commitment to their cause and are often willing to make enormous personal sacrifices as well as to inflict appalling suffering on others. Extreme behaviour, of any sort, invites extreme speculation as to the individuals who carry it out.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTerrorists, Victims and Society
Subtitle of host publicationPsychological Perspectives on Terrorism and Its Consequences
EditorsAndrew Silke
Place of PublicationChichester
Number of pages25
ISBN (Electronic)9781119941248
ISBN (Print)9780471494621
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • terrorist
  • terrorism
  • political violence
  • terrorist psychology
  • psychology of terrorism

Cite this