Anti-terrorism, citizenship and security

Authors: Lee Jarvis and Michael Lister

This book explores how different publics make sense of and evaluate anti-terrorism powers within the UK, and the implications of this for citizenship and security.

Since 9/11, the UK’s anti-terrorism framework has undergone dramatic changes, including with the introduction of numerous new pieces of legislation. Drawing on primary empirical research, this book examines the impact of these changes on security and citizenship, as perceived by citizens themselves. We examine such impacts on different communities within the UK, and find that generally, whilst white individuals were not unconcerned about the effects of anti-terrorism, ethnic minority citizens (and not Muslim communities alone) believe that anti-terrorism measures have had a direct, negative impact on various dimensions of their citizenship and security.

This book thus offers the first systematic engagement with ‘vernacular’ or ‘everyday’ understandings of anti-terrorism policy, citizenship and security. Beyond an empirical analysis of citizen attitudes, it argues that while transformations in anti-terrorism frameworks impact on public experiences of security and citizenship, they do not do so in a uniform, homogeneous, or predictable manner. At the same time, public understandings and expectations of security and citizenship themselves shape how developments in anti-terrorism frameworks are discussed and evaluated. The relationships between these phenomenon, in other words, are both multiple and co-constitutive. By detailing these findings, this book adds depth and complexity to existing studies of the impact of anti-terrorism powers.

The book will be of interest to a wide range of academic disciplines including Political Science, International Relations, Security Studies and Sociology.

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‘A nuanced and sophisticated analysis of a very important subject. At a time when governments are re-evaluating and recalibrating their responses to terrorism in the face of rapidly evolving threats, including greater emphasis on “citizen resilience”, this book provides an innovative approach to understanding what the impact of anti-terrorism policies really entails for the “ordinary” citizen, and what it might mean for different segments of society with differing conceptions of “citizenship” and “security”, not only in the UK, but in other multicultural societies as well.'
Ronald Crelinsten, author of Counterterrorism (Polity Press), Associate Fellow, Centre for Global Studies, University of Victoria, Canada

‘A thoughtful scholarly work that puts citizens at the heart of anti-terrorism law and policy in a way that enhances our understanding and delivers a sharp critical edge.'
Conor Gearty, Director of the Institute of Public Affairs, London School of Economics and Political Science

‘In a field marked by hype and point-scoring, it is a welcome relief to read a book about terrorism and security that is based on hard research and careful analysis. By listening to the voices of individuals in different communities, Jarvis and Lister are able to explain why post-9/11 security policy has left many UK citizens feeling less secure and less like citizens of their own country. This troubling conclusion is of urgent relevance to policymakers, to journalists and to citizens themselves.'
Ben O'Loughlin, Professor of International Relations, Royal Holloway, University of London

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