Terrorism, Psychology Of

Terrorism has transformed dramatically over the past few decades, and with these changes has come a need to understand the psychological origin of terrorism as well as the best practices when managing the aftermath of such attacks. Terrorism refers to an act that uses violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, especially for political purposes. Modern terrorism refers more specifically to a strategic attempt to create large numbers of psychological casualties as a secondary outcome of a large-scale physical attack. The important distinction is embedded in the psychological terror, fear, and grief in the aftermath of attacks rather than the specific deaths encountered during an attack. This entry briefly introduces the research on understanding terrorists, the different kinds of terrorism, as well as the ...

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