ANSO/PSYC 2000 & HRTS 2086: Psychosocial Perspectives on Terrorism

On September 11, 2001 many of us in the United States experienced for the first time the effects of terrorism. Terrorism is not a new phenomena and many researchers have been struggling to understand the root causes and effects of terrorism. In this class, we will examine the psychosocial roots and impact of terrorism. We will examine the "why" of terrorism. Are terrorists psychopaths? Are terrorists just inherently evil? Or is the issue much more complex than this, particularly when we take into consideration a variety of partisan perspectives? Within this context, we will examine the various types of terrorism such as religious, state-sponsored, and individual acts of terrorism.

During the class we will also examine the impact of terrorism on many levels from the individual to national level. We will discuss topics related to the personal experience of trauma due to terrorism, such as normal emotional reactions to personal attack, PTSD, grief, coping, and the challenge to just-world-thinking. On a group level we will examine broader issues such as stereotyping, in-group/out-group behaviors, moral exclusion, displacement of aggression, nationalism, propaganda, and dehumanization.

An International Studies Certificate, International Human Rights Certificate and Multicultural Studies Course.

Course Materials:


Recommended Readings and Links

Professor: Linda M. Woolf, Ph.D.

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