chapter  17
9 Pages


The problem with radicalization: overlooking the elephants in the room
WithSandra Walklate, Gabe Mythen

This chapter provides an overview of models of radicalization. It contrasts these models with notable aspects of the life biographies of the men involved in terrorist attacks in France in order to consider what these models of radicalization do and do not capture. The chapter examines some of the wider implications of this discussion both for policy making and critical criminological approaches to the problem of terrorism. It discusses how it might be possible to engage in a different and potentially more valuable conversation about the root causes of terrorism and the factors that drive individuals to organized violence. The chapter suggests that the violence of the State and Government policy – enacted domestically and internationally – play an important part in shaping the contexts in which commitments to violence become possible. It is vital that the State is able to acknowledge the elephants in the room that are frequently articulated in so called 'martyrdom videos' by young men.