On the need to develop a unified terminological approach to the concept of ‘extremism’
Keywords:extremism, extremist activities, radicalisation, extremist ideology
The article deals with the issues of understanding the term ‘extremism’. The research results showing that in society (among both ordinary citizens and representatives of law enforcement agencies), despite the existing bias against extremism, there is no clear understanding of the meaning of this term are presented. Consideration of extremism without taking into account the meaning and context of the term itself leads to a narrow understanding of the phenomenon and its consequences. This has led to extremism being described in such terms as ‘terrorism’ and ‘radicalisation’ or ‘polarisation’, which require responses (such as counter-terrorism measures and military action) from governments to combat this form of extremism. In our opinion, this approach is not entirely correct and, in some cases, can lead to negative consequences, since the problem of extremism has rather deep roots and an understanding of the social and psychological origins of this phenomenon is required for its effective solution. An analysis of its context provides additional insight into possible solutions to combat extremism. This may prompt governments to take action to ensure a more sustainable approach to countering extremism.