Author profile: Christiana Spens

Christiana Spens is a PhD candidate in International Relations at the University of St. Andrews, writing her thesis on Spectacles of Violence: Understanding the Public Punishment of Iconic Political Villains, which focuses on the historic use of media and public violence to acquire and undermine political power, and examines modern terrorism in that context. Previously, Christiana read Philosophy at Cambridge followed by the M.Litt Terrorism Studies at St. Andrews, and was awarded the Dr. Handa PhD Scholarship for Terrorism and Political Violence for 2013 – 2016. She is an editor (interviews and book reviews) for the New Strategist, and writes regularly for Studio International on art and politics. Her most recent publications include: “The Theatre of Cruelty: Dehumanisation, Objectification and Abu Ghraib,” in The Journal of Terrorism Research (2014) and “Contemporary Art and Political Violence,” in The Journal of Terrorism Research (2013).

Shock and Awe: Performativity, Machismo and ISIS

Christiana Spens • Nov 2 2014 • Articles
The use of beheadings by ISIS can be interpreted as a way of performing Iraqi ideals of masculinity to undermine Western ideals of tough but polite masculinity.

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