The Psychology of Terrorism Fears

The Psychology of Terrorism Fears

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The psychology of terrorism, in its most basic form, is about fear. Although academics continue to debate the meaning of terrorism, the end result for victims of terrorism is very often fear and terror. Many studying the effects of terrorism have focused more exclusively on discrete psychopathological constructs, most of which are clinically based. Ironically, these paradigms fail to acknowledge the primacy of basic fear in the context of terrorism, as well as how fear affects people in both positive and negative ways-above and beyond whether one meets criteria for a clinical disorder.

The purposes of this book are to unpack the complexity of terrorism fears and to present a new paradigm for understanding the psychology of terrorism. As such, this book presents empirical and theoretical frameworks for understanding fear as a dynamic process that motivates and affects people on a myriad of levels, from the individual to society at large. The book also highlights the paradox of how fear can negatively impact people and societies, but also be a central force underlying resilience and post-traumatic growth. Finally, The Psychology of Terrorism Fears discusses how society has changed as a result of terrorism, and specifically, how our own systems for managing terrorism may in fact contribute to fear.

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