Virginia Postrel proposes:

To someone who thinks "glamour" means movie stars and designer dresses, the idea that terrorism is glamorous sounds bizarre. But Rushdie is wise to the deeper meaning of glamour, as a form of magic and persuasion. Glamour is in the audience's eyes, and the phenomenon long preceded Hollywood. Jihadi terrorism in fact combines two ancient forms of glamour--the martial and the religious--with the modern promise of media celebrity.

Glamour can sell religious devotion or military glory as surely as it can pitch lipstick or island vacations. All promise a way to transcend our everyday circumstances, to experience more and become better than ordinary life allows.  All invite us to imagine escape and transformation.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.