Many studies of the social backgrounds of terrorists have found that they are wealthier and better educated than the population from which they are drawn. However, studies of political behavior have shown that all forms of political involvement are correlated with socioeconomic status. Among those who are politically active, opportunity costs may lead those involved in nonviolent activities to have a higher social status than violent individuals with a similar ideological orientation. This article develops a theory of participation in violence that incorporates both opportunity costs and informational barriers to participation and tests it by comparing violent and nonviolent political activists involved in the anticolonial agitation in Bengal (1906–39) using data from their police files. While the Bengali terrorists are better educated and have higher status jobs than the population average, they are less educated and less wealthy than the nonviolent activists. These results suggest that socioeconomic status may play a substantial negative role in terrorist recruitment within elites.