The Uses of Law in the War on Terror


The UC Transnational and Transcolonial Studies Multicampus Research Group and the Department of French & Francophone Studies Present Joan Dayan discussing law and the war on terror.


Thursday, October 21, 2004
4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
306 Royce Hall
UCLA campus
Los Angeles, CA 90095

Arguing that what seems to be the lawless practices of the current Washington administration is rather a hyper-legality that feeds on precedent in domestic law, Dayan will focus on the legal history of "cruel and unusual punishment." Rules of law not only prompt the terror meted out in Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, the offshore detention centers at Bagram air base and the military base on Diego Garcia, but also in our state prisons. What are the local, legal loopholes ready at hand for limiting or disregarding established, international anti-torture laws? In the seminar, Dayan will attempt to construct an analytic of power that takes seriously the law as its model and considers the continuum between the slave, the prisoner, and the newly targeted "civilian" or "security detainee."

Joan Dayan, Robert Penn Warren Professor in the Humanities at Vanderbilt University, works on 18th and 19th Century American and Caribbean studies and the comparative legal and religious history of the Americas. Her books include A Rainbow for the Christian West, Fables of Mind: An Inquiry into Poe's Fiction, and Haiti, History, and the Gods. Currently a Guggenheim fellow in law, she is completing a book on slavery, incarceration and the law of persons.


Cost : Free and open to the public. Limited seating is available, but no reservations are required. Parking is available for $7.

Sponsor(s): , French and Francophone Studies, UC Transnational and Transcolonial Studies Multicampus Research Group