The purpose of the module is to develop an understanding of the complex relationships between terrorism, counter-terrorism efforts, and human rights, both at home and abroad. Central to the module is the role of the state in responding to terrorism, in attempting to prevent terrorism, and in itself using and sponsoring terrorism. In this regard students are encouraged to re-evaluate assumptions about the state and its place in domestic and international politics, focusing particularly on crimes by the state. Students will be introduced to competing approaches to the study of terrorism, many of which are grounded in wider theories and approaches common to International Relations and Security Studies.
One of the challenges of the module is to think critically about the implications and consequences of those various approaches. The module will begin by looking at the various methodological, theoretical, and definitional challenges associated with the study of terrorism. Building on this grounding, students will then begin analysing terrorism, counter-terrorism and the role of the state through a number of case studies drawn from the 20th and early 21st Centuries. They will be encouraged to relate each of the case studies to the broader methodological and theoretical debates explored in the first few weeks of the module.
Private Study: 178
Contact Hours: 22
Compulsory for the following courses:
• MA Terrorism and Security
Optional to all students on MA programmes within the School of Politics and International Relations.
Also available as an elective module
Method of assessment
Critical review, 30%
Essay, 4000 words, 70%
Reassessment methods: 100% coursework
The University is committed to ensuring that core reading materials are in accessible electronic format in line with the Kent Inclusive Practices.
The most up to date reading list for each module can be found on the university's reading list pages.
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1. Analyse competing definitions of terrorism, counter-terrorism and state terrorism
2. Appreciate the impact that efforts in the name of counter-terrorism in liberal democratic states have had on human rights and civil liberties at home, and relate these to broader ethical debates
3. Develop an understanding of policies that liberal democratic states have enacted in the name of countering terrorism, and evaluate the impact that they have had on the populations of targeted states
4. Evaluate critically the strengths and weaknesses of competing theoretical approaches, derived from International Relations and Security Studies, to questions of terrorism, counter-terrorism and state terrorism in light of the empirical cases studied.
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Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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