About this course

Since September 11th 2001 understanding terrorism has become a major concern for both politicians and academics. This course examines terrorism in the context of international and national security. It proceeds by examining the motives of terrorist groups (ethnic, nationalist, religious, ideological) and the methods they use (bombings, hijackings, assassinations, hostage-taking.)

The different approaches to countering terrorism – political, law and order, military – are also examined. Attention is devoted to the psychology of those prepared to kill and die for their cause and the question of what distinguishes a terrorist from a freedom-fighter is addressed. Examples will be drawn from the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Europe and the Americas, with particular attention paid to the ‘new’ terrorism aimed at the West and the United States in particular. Individual research forms a major part of the course and students will be required to prepare and present their findings to the rest of the group.


Check with your home institution for specific information on fulfillment of major / course requirements.