This book explores the interrelationship between terrorism and policy relevance from a range of critical perspectives. In particular, it questions the politics of policy-relevance; that is, it interrogates how epistemological and practical pressures to produce "policy-relevant" research shapes prevalent understandings of (counter)terrorism, and vice-versa.
It also reflects on Critical Terrorism Studies’ (CTS) relationship to policy-relevance. Should CTS eschew engagement with policy-relevance and maintain a position outside the orthodoxy, or are CTS scholars uniquely positioned to offer meaningful alternatives to contemporary counterterrorism practices? Read thus, the question of policy relevance is central to CTS’ identity and represents an essential juncture as to how associated scholarship might develop into the future.
Through the prism of policy-relevance, this edited volume examines a myriad of issues, including: the popular silencing of terrorist victims’ voices; the closure of space for social workers to tackle ‘radicalisation’; the institutional pressures on policy-practitioners tasked with preventing ‘radicalisation’; and, how policy-relevance informs contemporary practices of mass surveillance.
By reflecting on one of the most essential components of (counter)terrorism, this volume forms a critical interjection that will continue to shape the agenda not only on policy-relevance, but on the discipline of Critical Terrorism Studies itself. This book was originally published as a special issue of Critical Studies on Terrorism.
1. Editors’ introduction: critical terrorism studies: reflections on policy-relevance and disciplinarity James Fitzgerald, Nadya Ali and Megan Armstrong
2. Critical terrorism studies, victimisation, and policy relevance: compromising politics or challenging hegemony? Will McGowan
3. Terror from behind the keyboard: conceptualising faceless detractors and guarantors of security in cyberspace Gareth Mott
4. "Read it in the papers, seen it on TV…": the 1981 Libyan hit squad scare as a case of simulated terrorism in the United States Adrian Hänni
5. Ask the audience: television, security and Homeland Louise Pears
6. Interrogating representations of "militants" and "terrorists" in the United States’ Militant Imagery Project and the Counterterrorism Calendar Priya Dixit
Comment and Debate
7. To be or not to be policy relevant? Power, emancipation and resistance in CTS research Richard Jackson
8. Dialogue, praxis and the state: a response to Richard Jackson Harmonie Toros
Conversations in Critical Studies on Terrorism
9. Counter-radicalisation policy across Europe: an interview with Maarten van de Donk (Radicalisation Awareness Network) James Fitzgerald
10. Frontline perspectives on preventing violent extremism: an interview with Alyas Karmani (STREET UK) James Fitzgerald