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The Discourse on Terrorism

Political Violence and the Subcommittee on Security and Terrorism, 1981-1986

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Michael Gold-Biss

This work is an inquiry into the constitution of «terrorism» through formal discourse from the vantage point of those who observe, study, describe and, especially, comment on it. This analysis presents an alternative understanding of terrorism, not based solely on the description of its presence nor the panacea-like remedies for confronting it. It is premised on the notion that terrorism is an essentially contested subject. The study is a critique of the orthodoxy, understood to be the demonization of armed oppositional violence in the form of terrorism.