The terrorist attacks of 9/11, closely followed by the expose of torture in U.S. detainment camps, dampened hopes for a more peaceful world in the twenty-first century and challenged the belief that humanity was on a course of progress toward rational deliberation, the rule of law, and human rights.In "Sacred Violence", the distinguished political and legal theorist Paul W. Kahn investigates the reasons for the resort to violence characteristic of premodern states. In a startling argument, he contends that law will never offer an adequate account of political violence. Instead, we must turn to political theology, which reveals that torture and terror are, essentially, forms of sacrifice. Kahn forces us to acknowledge what we don't want to see: that we remain deeply committed to a violent politics beyond law. Kahn's provocative argument and conversational style will challenge and engage theorists and lay readers alike.