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Mental Health in the War on TerrorCulture, Science, and Statecraft$
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Neil Aggarwal

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231166645

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231166645.001.0001

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Depictions of Arabs and Muslims in Psychodynamic Scholarship

Depictions of Arabs and Muslims in Psychodynamic Scholarship

(p.83) 4 Depictions of Arabs and Muslims in Psychodynamic Scholarship
Mental Health in the War on Terror

Neil Krishan Aggarwal

Columbia University Press

This chapter presents several psychodynamic analyses concerning the root of Islamic terrorism, addressing specifically the dichotomy between the U.S. and Muslim countries. Many psychodynamic authors attribute religious terrorism to a fundamentalist “East” in contrast to a secular “West.” Jessica Benjamin traces Islamic violence to the lack of an Enlightenment period in the “Muslim world” compared with the U.S. Likewise, Maria Miliora also claims that Muslim nations are devoid of modernity, that the Muslim countries appear to be standing still during the past 200 years while the West has greatly progressed to modernity. Authors who strive not to condemn Muslims while analyzing terrorists' motives, still point to the dichotomy between the U.S. and Muslim countries as one of the causes of Islamic terrorism. Elisha Davar persuades his reader to avoid stereotyping Islam but insists that the difference between values of Americans and Muslims is significant in the study of terrorism.

Keywords:   Islamic terrorism, dichotomy, American values, Muslim world, Elisha Davar, Maria Miliora, Jessica Benjamin

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