Terrorism and Affordance

Title:                      Terrorism and Affordance

Author:                  Max Taylor

Taylor, Max (2012) and P M Currie, eds. Terrorism and Affordance: New Directions in Terrorism Studies. New York: Continuum

LCCN:    2012406796



  • In this groundbreaking work, leading scholars and experts set out to explore the utility of the concept of affordance in the study and understanding of terrorism and political violence. Affordance is a concept used in a variety of fields, from psychology to artificial intelligence, which refers to how the quality of an environment or object allows an individual to perform a specific action. This concept can represent an important element in the process of choice involved in behavior, and is closely related to situational analyses of criminal behavior. In this book, the contributors set out to explore how this concept can be used to study terrorism and, as a result, develop management strategies. Essays discuss such topics as affordance in relation to counterterrorism, technology, cyber-jihad, ideology, and political ecologies. By importing the concept of affordance and a new set of research to the study of terrorism, the authors offer an innovative and original work that challenges and adds to various aspects of situational crime prevention and counterterrorism.


  • Terrorism and affordance : an introduction / Max Taylor — Affordance and situational crime prevention : implications for counter terrorism / Richard Wortley — Conceptual and methodological explorations in affordance and counter terrorism / Paul Ekblom — Cyber-jihad : ideology, affordance and latent motivations / Gilbert Ramsay — Affording terrorism : idealists and materialities in the emergence of modern terrorism / Mats Fridlund — Affordances and the new political ecologies / Roy Williams — When are terrorists hackers? Technology, affordance and practice / Gilbert Ramsay — Affordance, terrorism and the overestimation of offence homogeneity / Jason Roach — Affordance as inferred opportunity? / Phil Unsworth, Rosie Alexander and Ken Pease — Conclusion / P M Currie.


Date Updated:  March 2, 2017

Reviewed by Joseph Sinai[1][1]

In this edited volume, the contributors explore the utility of what is termed the concept of “affordance” to analyze the underpinnings of terrorist-type political violence. This concept refers to “how the quality of an environment or object allows an individual to perform a specific action,” which in this case refers primarily to terrorist criminal behavior. Although the discussion is highly theoretical, the methodologies presented by its academic contributors are highly useful for those involved in counterterrorism studies.

[1] Sinai, Joseph C. in The Intelligencer: Journal of U. S. Intelligence Studies (20, 1, Spring/Summer 2013, p. 107). Joseph Sinai, Ph.D. Dr. Joshua Sinai is a Washing~ ton-based educator and consultant on terrorism and counterterrorism studies. He can be reached at: Joshua.Sinai@comcast.net.


This entry was posted in Terrorism and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Terrorism and Affordance

  1. Pingback: Fountainhead of Jihad | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s