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14. Terrorism

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Chapter Summary

Terrorism is an ideal subject for comparative sociology. On one hand, what is referred to as "terrorism" constitutes a phenomenon which can be defined and which possesses its own unity from a theoretical point of view. On the other hand, this phenomenon varies in time and space. At least until the 1990s one of the specificities of terrorism was that it only came to the forefront in sporadic fashion. The characteristic of classical terrorism, that of the period from 1960 to 1980, was that it was active within a "Westphalian" world. "Global" terrorism is deployed in a space which is edged by two extreme limits. At one extreme it is purely transnational; at the other extreme, it is classical, as least when it is a question of its frame of reference.

Keywords: classical terrorism; comparative sociology; global terrorism; traditional community



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