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Disordered Personalities and Extremism

understanding the links between individual acts of 'extremist' violence, psychological disturbance, and the social and cultural processes in which they prosper 

The dramatic rise of Daesh (ISIS) whose supports seem to revel in their own capacity to enjoy acts of cruel violence has again raised the question about the sort of individual who might be attracted to such groups and their methods – and indeed the label ‘psychopath’ has been invoked. It is certainly the case that those who take ‘extremist’ positions might often be thought of as ‘antisocial’ as they by definition set themselves apart from mainstream of the social body – and sometimes that distance is reinforced with violence.

For many years, however, researchers and commentators have insisted that there was no link between ‘terrorism’ and individual psychopathology. Have events of the past couple decades given any cause to doubt this? Might there be something to be gained through thinking about acts of extremist violence in terms of the frameworks within which we might understand antisocial personality disorder?

In the spirit of this seminar series we are not interested in assuming that ASPD simply exists within individuals but in how cross disciplinary perspectives might help us understand how such extreme antisocial positions are taken by individuals and how those positions are then created and maintained.

We are interested in hearing from those who would be interested in contributing theoretical or empirical work that seeks to understand how links might be understood between individual acts of ’extremist’ violence, psychological disturbance and the social and cultural processes in which they prosper.

Confirmed speakers:

  • Monica Lloyd: University of Birmingham, formerly Prison Psychologist working on projects concerning people convicted of extremist offences; NOMS and prison inspectorate.
  • Professor Barry Richards: University of Bournemouth, author of Emotional Governance : Politics, Media and Terror (2007, Palgrave) founding editor of Media, War and Conflict.
  • Dr Ian Miller (Trinity College, Dublin):  “On Perverse Socialization: The Shared Fantasy of Limitless Sweetness”
  • Dr Daniella Angueli, (University of Rennes 2) “State of alienation”
  • Christopher Dean (formerly NOMS, Forensic Psychology):   “Emotional Vulnerability, Identification and Extremist Violence”
  • Maktuno Suit (East London Hospital Trust, London Pathways Trust); “Dreaming of Columbine An exploration of extremism ideologies and their link to an offender’s psychopathology”
  • Dr Nichola Khan (University of Brighton) “On disordered politics: continuities between individual and political madness in a case of extreme violence in Pakistan.”
Tickets cost £22.50 and can be booked here

This event is  funded by the ESRC, organized by collaboration between David W Jones (Psychosocial Studies at the University of East London), Chris Scanlon (Consultant Forensic Psychotherapist—NHS), David Gadd (University of  Manchester, the Association of  Psychosocial Studies.
contact: d.jones@uel.ac.uk

Monday, 21 March 2016
9:30-17:00

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