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Religion and Terrorism: Christian Fundamentalism and Extremism


Journal of Terrorism and Political ViolenceJournal abstract

The history and identity of fundamentalism is complex. Religious fundamentalism names an ideological perspective found in most, if not all, major religions and is currently associated with variant forms of extremism and religiously-motivated acts of violence, including terrorism. Following a discussion of religious extremism per se, a typological paradigm of religious fundamentalism that attempts to demonstrate the ideological development from what might be referred to as an “initial” and relatively benign fundamentalism into extremism and thence to terrorism, will be presented. A discussion of a model of fundamentalism as applied to Islam will provide a comparative basis for assessing Christian fundamentalism and extremism, so setting the scene for an applied exploration of religious extremism and terrorism with particular reference to Christian contexts and examples.

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