Mark Bracher

Area and Development Studies

PhD Researcher in Area and Development Studies (ESRC 1+3)
Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter

Start date: September 2015

Research topic: Tracking ideological shifts: the surprising rise of Sunni Islamic Extremism in Lebanon

My thesis explores the phenomenon of Radicalisation into Violent Extremism [RVE], with a specific focus on why certain ideologies become more or less accessible and appealing to a community as the socio-political circumstances of that community change. I have chosen the Lebanese Sunni community as my case-study for this research, as their recent history has dramatically demonstrated the propensity for preferred ideologies to change as circumstances change. Of particular interest here is how and why extremist religious ideologies have become increasingly accessible and appealing to communities traditionally supportive of secular ideologies; over a relatively short time period.

Research supervisors: Dr Omar Ashour, Dr Eleanor Gao