Friday, January 24, 2020
New Religious Movements Essay -- Analysis, Lorne Dawson
Dawson (2010) Lorne Dawson presents a unique perspective on the similarities between New Religious Movements (NRM), which are also known as cults, and radical Islamic groups. Dawson (2010) questions why no dialogue has occurred because of the similarities between the two types of movements. Dawson (2010) stated that individuals that join Islamic extremist groups have the same issues of NRM members who experience a source of deprivation or alienation from the secular world. As with both groups, Dawson (2010) alludes that the deprivation is based on personalization of an issue that could be social, psychological, and moral. Dawson (2010) cautions that deprivation is not all about economics and there is no singular profile to fit an individual and pointed reason of why an individual will feel deprivation. Dawson points out the general public may view people as down on their luck and in economic strife. However, in actuality, both groups according to Dawson (2010) come from middle class families and have obtained some education and seem unremarkable, just as asserted in the Silber and Bhatt (2007) study. With this sense of deprivation, Dawson points out seeking individuals in both NRM and radical Islamic groups may want to pursue an identity which is influenced by socialization with other people going through the same situation or who understand what an individual is going through. Dawson makes an interesting point that the social bonds that are strong and give an individual a sense of belonging which help transform a person to a NRM or radical Islamic group. Dawson refers to two key socialization tenets that are in both NRM and radical Islam and was mentioned in Silber and Bhatt (2007) study that are appli... ...to steer away from the aspect of socialization as a conduit to propel radicalization. It does mention that Larose accused of conspiring to kill Swedish artist Lars Vilks had social contacts through emails supporting her effort. The literature provides a valid point that the internet has transpired as a major component in increase of the radicalization process. This paper argues the researchers should have presented the argument that the internet is a gateway for socialization rather than a forum for self-radicalization. The paper did mention the importance of information operations to counter media promoting radicalization which has not been emphasized to the extent as it was in this literature. The Self-Awakening variable implies religion in this literature. The Social Conduit variable is obviously identified as the internet and extremist groups.