Rage: Narcissism, Patriarchy, and the Culture of Terrorism by Abigail R Esman
In the days after 9/11, Abigail Esman walked the streets of New York haunted by a sense that was eerily familiar: the trauma of violence that hovered over the city. Friends, family, strangers in the street moved, walked, even stood, as she herself had done before as a victim of domestic battery and abuse. Since then, Esman, an award-winning journalist who specializes in writing on terrorism and radicalization, has studied the connections between terror and abuse, and the forces that inspire both forms of violence. The complex web that ties them together is the subject of this groundbreaking new book, Culture of Terrorism, which exposes these interrelations to bring new insights into the terrorist psyche and the cultures that create it. In this new approach to understanding terrorism and violence, Esman presents clear explanations of malignant (pathological) narcissism and its roots in shame-honor cultures - both familial and sociopolitical - through portraits of terrorists and batterers, including Osama bin Laden, Oklahoma bomber Timothy McVeigh, O.J Simpson, and others. The insights of psychiatrists, former Muslim radicals, national security experts, and others elaborate authoritatively on the thesis, while Esman's own experiences with abuse and the aftermath of 9/11 on the streets of New York City further enrich the narrative. Finally, Culture of Terrorism proposes social and policy initiatives aimed at simulating social equality and enriching women's rights through educational programs globally - all to overcome cultural oppressions and other sociopolitical forces that hinder the possibilities for security and peace. The result is a volume that sheds new light on the roots of violence and terrorism, while arguing for proactive ways in which to protect our Western traditions of justice and of freedom.