This article analyses certain rhetorical aspects of “Islamic State” (IS) propaganda. Specifically, it discusses arguments used to concretise calls to action, focusing on recurring ways in which supposed benefits of engagement are contrasted with disadvantages of abstention. It appears that the opposing notions of “sincerity” and “hypocrisy” underpin many of the arguments presented, which prompts a closer look at their respective symbolisms. The rhetorical prominence of these antonyms indicates an apparently conscious attempt to address contemporary issues of social identity and political marginalisation, whereby the experiences of Muslim minorities (including those in Europe) are repeatedly used as a discouraging example.
al-ʿAdnaniMuhammad. 2014. “This is the Promise of Allah”. Released as an Arabic-language audio message by Al-Furqan Foundation for Media Production and in translated (English) text form by Al-Hayat Media Center both on 29 June. Accessed 30 July 2017. www.jihadology.net.
Al-Ajnad Foundation for Media Production. 2014. Ummati qad laha fajarun. Translation provided by A. J.al-Tamimi “‘My Ummah Dawn Has Appeared’: Nasheed for the Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham”. Accessed 30 July 2017. www.aymennjawad.org.
al-BaghdadiAbu Bakr. 2014. “A Message to the Mujahidin and the Muslim Ummah in the Month of Ramadan”. Released as an Arabic-language audio message by al-Furqan Foundation for Media Production and in translated (English-language) text form by al-Hayat Media Center both on 1 July. Accessed 30 July 2017. www.jihadology.net.
Al-Furqan Foundation for Media Production. 2014b. “Special Coverage of the Khutbah and Jumuʿah Prayer in the Great Mosque in the City of Mosul”. Released 5 July. Accessed 30 July 2017. www.jihadology.net. English translation provided by al-Hayat Media Center and downloaded from www.archive.org on 3 November 2014.
BarrAndrew and AlexandraHerfroy-Mischler. 2017. “ISIL’s Execution Videos: Audience Segmentation and Terrorist Communication in the Digital Age” Studies in Conflict & Terrorism. DOI: 10.1080/1057610X.2017.1361282.
FrissenThomasErkanTogusluPietervan Ostaeyen and Leend’Haenens. 2018. “Capitalizing on the Koran to Fuel Online Violent Radicalization: A Taxonomy of Koranic References in ISIS’s Dabiq” Telematics and Informatics35/2: 491-503.
HamidSadek. 2013. “The Attraction of ‘Authentic Islam’: Salafism and British Muslim Youth” in Global Salafism: Islam’s New Religious Movement edited by RoelMeijer (Oxford: Oxford University Press) 384-403.
MacnairLogan and RichardFrank. 2018. “The Mediums and the Messages: Exploring the Language of Islamic State Media through Sentiment Analysis” Critical Studies on Terrorism. DOI: 10.1080/17539153.2018.1447226.