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Textbook on Criminology

Textbook on Criminology (7th edn)

Katherine S. Williams
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date: 05 December 2023

19. Terrorism and State violencelocked

19. Terrorism and State violencelocked

  • Katherine S. WilliamsKatherine S. WilliamsLecturer in Law, University of Wales, Aberystwyth


Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on series provides an accessible overview of the key areas on the law curriculum. This chapter examines terrorism and State violence. It addresses two key questions: Is terrorism criminal? What issues are raised by the responses of governments to their sharply heightened perception of terrorism as a significant threat? On the first question, it is argued that while most acts seen as terrorist can fall under, and be dealt with by normal criminal legislation, there are at least two large areas of complication and ambiguity. On the second question of the legislative responses aimed at controlling terrorism, the chapter focuses on the extent to which, both nationally and internationally, it becomes impossible for governments to avoid confronting the crucial issue of balance.

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