USC Gould School of Law Professor Mary Dudziak recently joined a panel of historians who reflected on the effect the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks have had on American foreign policy and how the “war on terror” has changed evaluations of history.
” ‘Law-fare’ is usually thought of as law on the battlefield,” says Dudziak, the Judge Edward J. and Ruey L. Guirado Professor of Law, History and Political Science. “But, after Sept. 11, the fusion of war and law seeped into the basic administration of justice as legal actors saw their role as affecting the course of the war on terror.” The panel, a video of which appears on the C-SPAN website, took place at the annual meeting of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations in June.
The 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks has generated discussions, stories and programs worldwide. Typically, historians weigh in on “history” 30 years after an event, while journalists and pundits take the first stab at examination. However, the 9/11 terrorist attacks were different, and Dudziak has been at the leading edge of historians examining these events.
In a collection of essays, Dudziak brought together leading scholars of history, law, literature and Islam to ask whether the attacks and their aftermath marked a transition in United States and world history or whether they are best understood in the context of pre-existing historical trajectories.