Ordinary Terrorism in Historical Perspective

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					Ordinary Terrorism in Historical Perspective
    ■ Martin A. Miller, Duke University




    First the terrorism path has to be accepted as ours, even—or even precisely
    because—it is critically rejected.
                                                                                                   —Slavoj Zizek



I. Conceptualizing Terrorism

Terrorism is a historically contextualized phenomenon characterized by the
violent combat between governments and societies over unresolved political
issues. The combat produces situations in which the consequences of the
violence, which is conducted either from above in the form of a variety of
authoritarian regimes (vs. society) or from below directed by insurgencies
(vs. the state), become a dominating factor in the daily functioning of social
and political life. The phenomenon is sustained by the dynamic interaction of
the combatants an
				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: Although it is generally-and readily-understood that political violence from below implemented by radical cells against government agencies and officials falls into the category of insurgent terrorism, we are less willing to accept the notion that virtually all states engage in forms of enforcement, deprivation, neglect, and harm that operate as everyday realities. It is precisely these forces and currents that make possible the far more visible incendiary moments of violence that we tend to define as terroristic.
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