Religious Knives

Advance Praise

“A very unique and powerful addition to our understanding of what motivates the use of terrorism as a political tool.”

Eileen F. Babbitt, PhD, Director, Institute for Human Security, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University

“Suistola and Volkan’s tour de force brings a depth, density, and clarity of data to their timely yet timeless topic.”

Peter A. Olsson, MD, Retired Professor of Psychiatry, Baylor College of Medicine; Fellow of the American Academ of Psychoanalysis

“A valuable contribution to the study of terrorism . . . written with solid expertise and careful deliberation.”

Timo Soikkanen, Professor Emeritus in Contemporary History, Turku University, Finland

About the Book

In this timely multidimensional study, historian Jouni Suistola and psychoanalyst Vamık D. Volkan draw on their respective disciplines and their own personal and professional experiences to investigate the historical and psychological roots of terrorism. Specifically, what is it in human nature that allows people to terrorize and kill the other, and what societal factors—whether political, economic, or religious—lead to terrorism? And, in turn, how might terrorist ideologies and groups be defeated, especially when a society’s realistic fears are contaminated with xenophobia, racism, and fantasized dangers? Focusing specifically on modern- day radical Islamist terrorism, the authors argue that studying the minds of inpidual terrorists can tell us something about those inpiduals, but that only by examining the deeper historical, political, and society-wide psychological processes at work will we be able to uncover the core causes of terrorism. Only through such understanding, they conclude, will the world be positioned to prevent further radicalization and create lasting and peaceful solutions to the seemingly intractable problem of terrorist violence.

About the Authors

Jouni Suistola, PhD, served as Chairman of the International Relations Department and later Vice-Presi- dent at Near East University. He has authored or translated numerous books on the history of warfare.

Vamık D. Volkan, MD, is an Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia and President Emeritus of the International Dialogue Initiative. He has authored or edited dozens of books.

ISBN: 9781634311304 • paperback • Pitchstone Publishing • 184 pages • U.S. $24.95 / CAN $33.95

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