Date of Award

5-8-2020

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Andrew Wedeman

Second Advisor

Dr. Anthony Lemieux

Third Advisor

Dr. Jeannie Grussendorf

Fourth Advisor

Dr. S Rashid Naim

Abstract

Terrorist organizations, such as the Taliban, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula, produce videos to disseminate their messages. Even though there are many studies closely examining the text in jihadi videos, there are fewer studies that examine multimodal messages, specifically the audiovisual messages. This study aims to examine the audiovisual messages in videos produced by three jihadi groups: the Taliban, ISIS, and AQAP. This research attempts to answer the following strategic questions. One, what are some common themes in propaganda videos produced by the Taliban, ISIS, and al-Qa’ida? Two, how does each group utilize different Sonic Modes in common themes? Three, how do the three jihadi groups compare in their utilization of different Sonic Modes? Some of the findings include the utilization of specific common themes amongst the three groups, and these groups differ in their utilization of the audiovisual messages.

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