The Female Terrorist: A Socio-Psychological Perspective

Authored by: Deborah M. Galvin

Categories: Violent Conflict
Sub-Categories: National Security Forces and Armed Groups, Violent Extremism
Region: No Region
Year: 1983
Citation: Galvin, Deborah M. "The Female Terrorist: A Socio-Psychological Perspective." Behavioral Sciences and the Law 1, no. 2 (1983): 19–32.

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This article deals with the female terrorist, her socio-psychological characteristics, and her role within the terrorist organization. There is no archetypal female terrorist; her description is varied from her physique to her role within the organization to her psychological make-up. Women take up terrorism either by their own initiative or through a secondary other, most often introduced into it by a male. Although women terrorists have the equality to fight or die by the side of their male counterparts, their power position frequently is less than that of the male. The female’s sexuality plays an important role in the group dynamics and does alter the nature of terrorism itself. The article explores the implications of these findings for the future of terrorism and the participation of women.