What Does Radicalization Look Like?

Recognizing the Signs of Radicalization

Extremist groups have drawn in many recruits by targeting vulnerable individuals with different motivations, aspirations, and personality types. There is no one “mold” profile of those who seek to join extremist organizations. However, recognizing common signs of radicalization can help you determine whether you or someone else is at risk. Some common reasons why people join extremist groups are:

  • Exclusion by peer groups and a desire to belong

  • A desire to develop a distinct identity

  • Aiming to pursue religious or ideological “purity”

  • Attempts to find excitement and disrupt the boredom of everyday life

  • Avenging perceived injustices and correcting supposed “wrongs” in society or across the globe

  • Interaction with individuals who have already been radicalized

  • Discrimination





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