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Social-ecological portrait of two females from Montreal who joined ISIS


Ratna Ghosh ,

McGill University, CA
About Ratna
Ratna Ghosh is Distinguished James McGill Professor and William C. Macdonald Professor of Education at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Her research in comparative and international education focuses on women and development, critical multicultural education and social justice issues, refugee education, and the role of education in combating violent extremism.
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Hicham Tiflati,

Waterloo University, CA
About Hicham
Dr. Hicham Tiflati is a senior researcher studying Canadian foreign fighters based at Waterloo University. Dr Tiflati is also coordinator of the 'Canadian Muslims online' project based at UQÀM, and a fellow at the Center for the Research on Religion (CREOR) at McGill University. He was a co-investigator for the study 'Educational trajectories of radicalized females' at McGill University.
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Helal Hossain Dhali,

McGill University, CA
About Helal
Dr. Helal Hossain Dhali is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Women and Gender Studies at Dhaka University, Bangladesh. Also, he has recently completed his contract as a Research Associate at the Department of Integrated Studies, Faculty of Education, at McGill University. His research and teaching interests are centred on less heard and exploited people. His works emphasize people who suffer due to their ethnic-racial and gender identity, socio-economic class, religious belief, ideo-political position, and geographical location. His research and teaching interests include Coloniality, Decoloniality, Education, Extremism, Equity, Gender, Intersectionality, and Indigenous people.
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Dilmurat Mahmut,

McGill University, CA
About Dilmurat
Dr. Dilmurat Mahmut (Maihemuti Dilimulati) is a research assistant at the School of Religious Studies at McGill University. His research interests include Muslim identity in the West, equity and education, education and violent extremism, and immigrant integration in Canada and beyond. Currently, he is studying the identity reconstruction experiences of Uyghur immigrants in Canada.
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W.Y. Alice Chan

Centre for Civic Religious Literacy, CA
About W.Y. Alice
Dr. W.Y. Alice Chan is a co-founder and executive director of the Centre for Civic Religious Literacy. Her areas of research include religious literacy, religious bullying and religion in public education. This informs her work at the non-religious, non-profit Centre that aims to foster understanding about religious, spiritual and non-religious communities and individuals across sectors of Canada.
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This study focuses on the educational and social contexts of two females who left Montreal (Quebec), Canada to join ISIS in Syria. Using Bronfenbrenner’s (1979) ecological systems theory as the conceptual framework, narrative methodology allowed the collection of rich data on the trajectories of these radicalised minors.  The broad aim of the study was to identify the push and pull factors that contributed to their abrupt departure. Although a few of the many reasons that pushed them were identified, it was not possible to uncover the pull factors/mechanisms that led to their mobilisation.
How to Cite: Ghosh, R., Tiflati, H., Dhali, H.H., Mahmut, D. and Chan, W.Y.A., 2023. Social-ecological portrait of two females from Montreal who joined ISIS. Contemporary Voices: St Andrews Journal of International Relations, 3(1), p.None. DOI:
Published on 04 Apr 2023.
Peer Reviewed


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