Rural Perspectives on Terrorism: A Study Based in Helena, Montana
Since the World Trade Center bombings on September 11, 2001, terrorism has become a familiar word to many American citizens. Terrorism has been present in countries all over the world, including the United States, conducted by human actors across the lines of religions, races, gender, and ethnicity for decades before it was so keenly felt in the United States almost nineteen years ago. In the wake of the 9/11 attack, the perception many Americans’ have on terrorism and terrorists has been shaped by the national media in variety of ways. This research investigates conceptions of terrorism through qualitative methods using in-person, semi-structured, guided interviews with eight rural Montanan citizens. This research aids the understanding of how individuals, who have never experienced terrorism firsthand, perceive and understand terrorism. Pivotal concepts of Orientalism, developed by Edward Said, provide the theoretical framework used to support this research. Findings complement the literature on media and terrorism and provide further application and critique of Orientalism to contemporary issues on terrorism.