International relations

The Politics of Terror

Module code: M1014SDU
Level 6
30 credits in spring semester
Teaching method: Seminar
Assessment modes: Not yet finalised

Dr Shane Brighton For more information see here: This module offers an advanced level introduction to terrorism and political violence in modern societies. Through attention to case studies, academic literatures and a variety of media and other primary sources the module focuses on: - the conceptual and analytical challenges of defining and understanding terrorism and political violence - terror as a political instrument - the relationship between state and non-state terror - the historical development of terrorism and counterterrorism - the organisational, ideological and strategic dynamics of terrorist organisations - the policy dilemmas faced and principle methodologies employed by democratic and other states in countering terrorism - the role of media, mass communication and 'public dismodule' in political violence The curriculum is roughly divided into two sections. The first, 'Studying Terrorism: Historical and Conceptual Issues', offers a thematic exploration of terrorism considering its historical development in modern societies; relation to other forms of organised violence; some of the animating ideas historically associated with the use of terror for political purposes; the phenomenon of 'suicide terrorism' and the ideas, organisations and practices used by states in their efforts to counter terrorism. The second section, 'Cases and Contexts', situates terrorism and political violence within the changing context of state power, international and global politics, exploring the historical and contemporary relations between them. This module is assessed by Assessed by a 70% 3.5K essay, 20% 1k Essay, 10% 20 minute Group presentation. We meet each week for a three hour seminar combining mini-lectures, group work, analytical exercises and open discussion.