Center for Strategic Communication

CSC members Jeff Halverson, Bud Goodall, and Steve Corman have published a new book entitled Master Narratives of Islamist Extremism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011).  The book describes a framework for analyzing cultural narratives that extremists use to influence contested populations, then applies that framework to thirteen master narratives in contemporary use, including

  • The Pharaoh
  • The Jahiliyyah
  • The Battle of Badr
  • The Hypocrites
  • The Battle of Khaybar
  • The Battle of Karbala
  • The Mahdi
  • The Infidel Invaders (The Crusaders and The Tatars)
  • Shaytan’s Handiwork
  • 1924
  • The Nakba
  • Seventy-Two Virgins

The last chapter of the book explains how master narratives are strategic, what goals they serve, the stock of story forms and archetypes they contain, and five strategies through which their functions might be countered.

For more information, including detailed chapter descriptions, a sample chapter, additional resources, and ordering links, please visit this link.