‘This is ordinary behaviour’: Categorization and culpability in Hamas leaders' accounts of the Palestinian/Israeli conf



McKinlay, Andy and McVittie, Chris and Sambaraju, Rahul (2012) ‘This is ordinary behaviour’: Categorization and culpability in Hamas leaders' accounts of the Palestinian/Israeli conf. British Journal of Social Psychology, 51 (4). pp. 534-550. ISSN 2044-8309

[img] PDF
This_is_ordinary_behaviour.pdf
Restricted to Registered users only

Download (518kB) | Request a copy

Abstract

The present paper examines the talk of three senior figures from the Palestinian Hamas political movement. Data are drawn from a series of journalistic interviews that were conducted in the months leading up to the invasion of Gaza by Israel in December 2007. Using membership categorization analysis, we explore the membership categories and category-bound attributes that interviewers use in questions about responsibility for potentially culpable actions and the ways that these are taken up, challenged, or reworked by interviewees in presenting their own versions. The analytic findings show that interviewers deploy categories bound up with terrorism while interviewees develop alternative categorizations of resistance. Interviewers construct Palestinians as victims of Hamas’ actions while interviewees construct them as victims of Israeli aggression and international indifference. In warranting these alternative constructions, the interviewees contrast current behaviours of the international community with those of the past and align current Palestinian actions with those previously taken by Western nations in resisting illegitimate occupations. Through these descriptions of categories and actions, the interviewees attribute to the wider international community responsibility for addressing the events of the ongoing conflict.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: School of Arts, Social Sciences and Management > Psychology and Sociology
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2011 08:28
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2014 12:59
URI: http://eresearch.qmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/2328

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item