Why the Crusades Still Matter

Two scholars discuss a historic flashpoint and its relevance today. Antonia Ryan conducted an e-mail exchange with two scholars of the Crusades -- one who writes about Christian perspectives and one who studies the Muslim experience of these medieval wars.

Thomas Madden is the author of The New Concise History of the Crusades (2005) and is a professor and chair of the history department at St. Louis University. Carole Hillenbrand, author of The Crusades: Islamic Perspectives (2000), is professor of Islamic culture at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and winner of the King Faisal Foundation prize for Islamic studies.