When we classify an act as terrorism, or an agent as a terrorist, we are not just describing these things, but evaluating them. The label situates us, the act and agent, and an audience. And it implies a set of sanctioned responses. With Genealogies of Terrorism, Verena Erlenbusch-Anderson analyzes this developing nexus of meanings, evaluations, and directives. In particular, Erlenbusch-Anderson reveals that the conditions for use, the sanctioned responses, and the groups evaluated change over time. This book is a historical-philosophical evaluation of the use of the term terrorism, it is a genealogy of its contested application and criticism. Targets for Erlenbusch-Anderson are instances in the French Revolution, late-imperial Russia, its seminal usage in the Algerian war (1954–62), and its usage in the United States in the aftermath of 9/11. Terrorism for Erlenbusch-Anderson is a dispositif, “a historical formation that has a particular strategic purpose, but it is simultaneously functionally overdetermined and permanently readjusted or modified” (12). One conclusion that Erlenbusch-Anderson draws in light of these functions is that invocations of terrorism define political membership, be it the nation, a class, citizenship, or humanity, negatively, in that excluding the terrorist (and the terrorist’s aims), civic virtues as opposed are in sharper contrast. And a further consequence is that, given the parameters provided by the genealogy, much of the neoconservative foreign policy of the United States, has a double-face, in that it is “underwritten by a sort of imperial raison d’État that permits and requires the suspension of law and the use of force in defense of society at home and humanity abroad” (142).