The collective nature of lone wolf terrorism : Anders Behring Breivik and the anti-Islamic social movement
Title: The collective nature of lone wolf terrorism : Anders Behring Breivik and the anti-Islamic social movement
Citation: Terrorism and political violence, 2014, Vol. 26, No. 5, pp. 759-779
ISSN: 0954-6553; 1556-1836
Anders Behring Breivik, a lone wolf terrorist, killed 77 people in two terrorist attacks in Norway in 2011. This study uses framing theory from social movement studies to compare his Manifesto with the rhetoric of the anti-Islamic movement that inspired him. The anti-Islamic movement has a dual, and sometimes inconsistent, collective action framing. On the one hand, they portray Islam as an existential threat to the West and a warlike enemy; on the other, they promote peaceful and democratic opposition. The potential for radicalization is thus immanent. This case study reveals the importance of seeing lone wolf terrorists as acting from rhetoric embedded in larger social movements. It further demonstrates, in detail, the subtle and complex ways in which political narratives rejecting terrorism and political violence still end up inspiring such acts.
Published online : 05 Feb 2014
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