Abstract

This article presents a sketch of the relevance of Islam to violent activism. Drawing on secondary analysis of previous research on Boko Haram (a group that operates in Cameroon, Chad, Niger and predominantly in Nigeria in 2016), it aims to avoid a traditional position singling out Islam as the only element propitious for the emergence and escalation of violence in groups with Islamic orientation. Instead the article suggests, in line with social movement theory perspectives, that Islam – though a very significant resource – is only one among other possible resources that encourage this development. In interaction with other resources and conditions, Islam provides both the ideological framework and the network platform upon which violent elements develop.