What would you do? Everyday conceptions and constructions of counter-terrorism

Lee Jarvis, Michael Lister

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)
1 Downloads (Pure)


This article explores findings from focus group research in which UK publics were asked: If you were in government, what would you do about terrorism? After situating our research within contemporary ‘bottom-up’ work on counter-terrorism, we discuss the diversity of answers we received to this question, which included improving education, addressing social fracture, and the need for more punitive counterterrorism powers. These exercises in public political imagination are important, we argue, for several reasons. These include the questions they pose for widespread claims about public disconnection from (security) politics, as well as their likely impact on the everyday lives of our research participants.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-291
Number of pages15
Issue number3
Early online date18 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2016


  • Counter-terrorism
  • Everyday
  • Focus group research
  • Security
  • Terrorism
  • Vernacular

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