January 19, 2019

Law and Literature 2019: A Course at the University of Ghent

From the mailbox:

Law and Literature 2019
Organising Committee
The course is co-organized by prof. dr. Elizabeth Amann (Literary Studies, Ghent University), prof. dr. Andrew Bricker (Literary Studies, Ghent University) and prof. dr. Georges Martyn (Legal History, Ghent University). 
The members of the scientific committee are: Sascha Bru (Literature, KU Leuven), Vivian Liska (Literature, University of Antwerp), Gertrudis Van de Vijver (Philosophy, Ghent University). 
Storytelling is ubiquitous in the law, and the law is the focus of many canonical texts and popular literary genres. In the past few decades, the intersection between these two fields has attracted the interest of legal and literary historians alike and has given rise to a wide range of approaches. The goal of the course is to help students to make their way in the heterogeneous and interdisciplinary field of “Law and Literature” and to introduce them to methodologies useful for analysing the relations between law and literature. Through lectures and seminar-style discussions with experts in the field, the course will encourage doctoral students to apply insights from “Law and Literature” to their research. 
• to teach students to analyse representations of legal concepts, institutions and procedures in literary texts (“law in literature”) • to familiarize students with narratological approaches to legal texts and genres (“law as literature”) • to clarify the role of the law and legal institutions in the literary field (censorship, trials, regulation)• to introduce students to the complicated legal issues surrounding new media• to explore the intersection between law and literature and new critical theoretical fields such as ecocriticism and the anthropocene.
Dates and programme 
(detailed descriptions of the sessions will be posted in February)Monday 04/03, 14:00-17:00: Gary Watt (University of Warwick) and Eva Brems (Ghent University): Introduction to the field of law and literature. This session will be followed by a social event in the evening.
Tuesday 05/03, 9:30-12:30: Greta Olson (University of Giessen): Law as literature: legal narratologyWednesday 20/03, 14:00-17:00: Martin Zeilinger (Anglia Ruskin University) and Eva Lievens (Ghent University): New technologies and the law. This session will be followed by a happy hour.
Wednesday 27/03, 9:30-12:30: Kevin Curran (University of Lausanne), Geert Van Hoorick (Ghent University) and Hendrik Schoukens (Ghent University): Law, literature and the environmentThursday 23/05, 14:00-17:15: Simon Stern (University of Toronto), Sebastiaan Vandenbogaerde (Ghent University), Caroline Laske (Ghent University) and Elizabeth Amann (Ghent University): Law in literatureTuesday 28/05, 14:00-17:00: Catherine O’Leary (University of Saint Andrews), Marc Cools (Ghent University) and Andrew Bricker (Ghent University): Censorship, press regulation and literature on trial. This session will be followed by a happy hour.
VenueGhent University, Law Faculty, Voldersstraat, Facultaire Raadzaal 
Registration feeFree of charge for members of the doctoral schools of Arts, Humanities and Law of UGent 
RegistrationDoctoral students who would like to include this course in their Doctoral Training Program are requested to register by February 25 by email to elizabeth.amann@ugent.be. For practical reasons, other participants are also asked to RSVP to this email. The course is also open to non-Ghent researchers.

January 17, 2019

Chen on Law and Literature: Theory and Evidence on Empathy and Guile @Daniel_L_Chen

Daniel L. Chen, Directeur de Recherche, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Toulouse School of Economics, Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse, University of Toulouse Capitole, Toulouse, France, is publishing Law and Literature: Theory and Evidence on Empathy and Guile in the Review of Law and Economics. Here is the abstract.
Legal theorists have suggested that literature stimulates empathy and affects moral judgement and decision-making. I present a model to formalize the potential effects of empathy on third parties. Empathy is modeled as having two components–sympathy (the decision-maker’s reference point about what the third party deserves) and emotional theory of mind (anticipating the emotions of another in reaction to certain actions). I study the causal effect with a data entry experiment. Workers enter text whose content is randomized to relate to empathy, guile, or a control. Workers then take the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET) and participate in a simple economic game. On average, workers exposed to empathy become less deceptive towards third parties. The result is stronger when workers are nearly indifferent. These results are robust to a variety of controls and model specifications.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Davies on The Bimetallic Question in "The Valley of Fear"

Ross E. Davies, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School, has published The Bimetallic Question in the Valley of Fear at 33 Sherlock Holmes Journal 156 (Summer 2018). Here is the abstract.
The vicissitudes of post-Civil War currency policy are reflected in variations in the text of Arthur Conan Doyle's novel, "The Valley of Fear."
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

January 15, 2019

Patrick on a Brief History of Disgust and the Law

Carlton Patrick, University of Central Florida, is publishing When Souls Shudder: A Brief History of Disgust and the Law in Research Handbook on Law and Emotions (Susan Bandes, Jody Lyneé Madeira, Kathryn Temple, and Emily Kidd White) (forthcoming). Here is the abstract.
This chapter takes a look back at the past three decades of disgust and the law. Reviewing many of the empirical findings of the behavioral sciences as well as the normative scholarship of legal scholars and other social scientists, it attempts to provide a bird’s eye view of the links between disgust, morality, and jurisprudence, and of the debates that emanate from those links.
Download the chapter from SSRN at the link.

Daniel and Woude on Making Sense of the Law and Society Movement @LeidenLawBlog @Maartje_W @LeidenLaw

Daniel Blocq, Leiden Law School, and Maartje van der Woude, Leiden Law School, Institute for Criminal Law & Criminology, are publishing Making Sense of the Law and Society Movement in volume 11 of the Erasmus Law review (2018). Here is the abstract.
This article aims to deepen scholarly understanding of the Law and Society Movement (L&S) and thereby strengthen debates about the relation between Empirical Legal Studies (ELS) and L&S. The article departs from the observation that ELS, understood as an initiative that emerged in American law schools in the early 2000s, has been quite successful in generating more attention to the empirical study of law and legal institutions in law schools, both in- and outside the US. In the early years of its existence, L&S – another important site for the empirical study of law and legal institutions – also had its center of gravity inside the law schools. But over time, it shifted towards the social sciences. This article discusses how that happened, and more in general explains how L&S became ever more diverse in terms of substance, theory and methods.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

January 14, 2019

Bezemek on The Alien and the State

Christopher Bezemek, University of Graz, Faculty of Law, Institute of Law and Political Science, is publishihng Stranger in a Strange Land: The Alien and the State in the Indonesian Journal of International & Comparative Law (2018). Here is the abstract.
The relationship of the stranger and the political community has traditionally been at the very core of various theoretical, historical and mythical accounts; in defining membership, in answering who is to be included, accepted and (thus) protected, in safeguarding a group’s position and its coherence. The essay argues that many of these accounts still prove to be of great value in a legal and political perspective: None of the questions raised today when it comes to the phenomenon of migration and inclusion are particulary new; rather they have been addressed frequently in sociology and political philosophy over the last centuries. We would be well-advised to rely on a broader perspective, on the teachings of history, and the insights of political philosophy when facing the intellectual and political challenges of our time.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

CFP: Islands and Remoteness in Geography, Law, and Fiction: Conference at the University of Verona, November 21-22, 2019

From the mailbox:

CFP:  Islands and Remoteness in Geography, Law, and Fiction, a conference convened by Matteo Nicolini, University of Verona, Law Department, and Thomas Perrin, UFR de Géographie et d’Aménagement, Université de Lille. The conference will take place at the University of Verona November 21-22, 2019.

The conference seeks to explore how, in many ways, islands appear to be “geographical
paradoxes”. Indeed, they are spatially remote places, which are, at the same time, bound to a continent by social conventions. The grounds of such puzzle are manifold. It is firstly a matter of spatial area. Secondly, the puzzle depends on how political power projects authority over circumscribed spatial realms, including non-continental realms. In so doing, authority forges the concepts of remoteness and bounds.

Proposals for papers are due by May 31, 2019 and should be sent to matteo.nicolini@univr.it and thomas.perrin@univ-lille.fr. Please also direct questions about the conference to them. They will make acceptances known by June 24, 2019.

The selected papers will be published in Pólemos – Journal of Law,
Literature and Culture,volume 14 (2020) Issue 2. The deadline for first draft papers submission is due by 15 January 2020.

For more information, see the link here. 

January 8, 2019

Northwestern Center For Legal Studies and Jack Miller Center for Teaching America's Founding Principles and History Seek Applications for Two Year Post Doc Fellowship

From the mailbox:
Northwestern’s Center for Legal Studies is pleased to continue a collaborative partnership with the Jack Miller Center for Teaching America’s Founding Principles and History. We seek applications for the centerpiece of the partnership: a two-year post-doctoral fellowship held in residence at Northwestern University’s Center for Legal Studies beginning September 1, 2019.

A strong preference will be given to candidates working at the intersections of constitutional innovation, politics, and law in the context of the rise of eighteenth century invention, new understandings of property, the Enlightenment, and the creation of the United States. Particularly encouraged to apply are candidates in legal history, the history of political and economic thought, and/or political theory whose work is empirically grounded in the eighteenth century but has significant contemporary implications for questions of constitutionalism, liberty, equality, and democracy.

The post-doctoral fellow will offer three courses per year on topics pertaining to early American and Atlantic Enlightenment history, political and economic thought, and/or social science. In addition to engaging in an active research and publishing agenda, the candidate is expected to provide a reasonable amount of assistance with organizing other activities associated with the Fellowship and the Legal Studies Program. The annual salary for the fellow is $50,000, plus fringe benefits and a $1,500 renewable annual research budget. The fellow is required to organize and participate in several activities associated with Jack Miller Center events at Northwestern. These activities include producing an essay on the fellow’s work; participating in the Annual Jack Miller Faculty Development Summer Institute for professors; working with Legal Studies faculty hosting a website that features the fellow’s work and other activities related to the Jack Miller Center; and planning, attending, and participating in the Law in Motion Lecture series. Generous funds are available to bring in scholars central to the fellow’s own scholarship for such events. This is a nine-month faculty appointment, and applicant must have a Ph.D. in hand by September 1, 2019.

Applicants should submit a cover letter stating qualifications and field of interest, a CV, a writing sample, a sample syllabus of a proposed course, and two letters of recommendation. Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States. Applications should be submitted no later than February 15, 2019.

Please contact Ann Kelchner a-kelchner@northwestern.edu with questions.

Chesler and Sneddon on Telling Tales: The Transactional Lawyer as Storyteller @ASUCollegeofLaw @MercerLAWSchool

Susan Chesler, Arizona State University College of Law, and Karen J. Sneddon, Mercer Law School, are publishing Telling Tales: The Transactional Lawyer as Storyteller in volume 15 of Legal Communication & Rhetoric: JALWD (2018). Here is the abstract.
Transactional documents, whether employment contracts or lease agreements, encapsulate the wishes, hopes, and fears of the transacting parties. The documents share a series of events, identify the key actors in the event, and anticipate particular outcomes. In other words, the transactional documents are narratives. The transactional lawyer is thus more than a transactional intermediary. The transactional lawyer is the narrative agent or storyteller. Equating a transactional lawyer to Aesop, the Brothers Grimm, and Scheherazade may appear to be an ill-fitting comparison. Yet, the comparison is surprisingly apt. Transactional lawyers weave together provisions and clauses to craft documents that will promote, guide, and control the relationship of those parties. This article shares five strategies to demonstrate how narratology can be used by transactional lawyers to draft documents that more effectively tell their client’s stories.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Dane on Robert Cover and Legal Pluralism @perrydane

Perry Dane, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, Rutgers Law School, has published Robert Cover and Legal Pluralism. Here is the abstract.
This short talk focuses on three aspects of Robert Cover's brand of legal pluralism: First, Cover's account of legal pluralism went beyond the simple recognition of non-state legal orders; just as important for him was the claim that non-state communities could generate and defend distinct readings of the state's own legal order. Second, Cover's jurisprudence assigned a central role to state violence and non-state communities' resistance. Violence and resistance were vital to his account not only because they are the way of the world but because they help render legal pluralism real. Third, Cover's well-known focus on the narrative dimension of the law was intertwined with his famous image of the law as a bridge between the present world and the ideal. Both the real and the ideal are narratives – stories – and that law is, in a sense, the feat of engineering that connects these two separated narratives.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

January 7, 2019

Finchett-Maddock on Re-worlding: A Theory of Art/Law @SussexLaw

Lucy Finchett-Maddock, Sussex School of Legal Studies, has published Re-worlding: A Theory of Art/Law. Here is the abstract.
This piece seeks to account for an increased interest in the intersection of art and law within legal thinking, activism, and artistic practice, arguing there to exist the phenomena and movement of ‘Art/Law’. Art/Law is the coming together of theory and practice in legal and political aesthetics, understood as a practice, (im)materially performed. It is seen as a natural consequence of thinking law and resistance in terms of space and time, accounting for a turn towards the visual, practical, and the role of affect, within ways of knowing. Art/law is a symptom of the end of art and end of law, synchronically rendered. Divisions between legal and aesthetic form have been well rehearsed within legal aesthetics scholarship, from law and literature, to critical legal studies’ work with images, text and performativity, and now law’s Anthropocene. Art/Law as a practice, however, is argued as an emergent onto-epistemic-ethics of necessity, a movement of seeing, being and knowing in response to the advancement of spectacle. It is the simultaneous reunion of law, art and resistance as one, breaking down the institutional artifice of art worlds and law worlds, offering a form of ‘resistant (in)formalism’, that accounts for matter and change. It is an inclusion of the uncertain and the disordered, as an opening of justice. This resistant (in)formalism describes the role of form, audience and practice within property, legal and aesthetic establishment, offering a countering of separatism at the end of art and the end of law, through a praxeology of Art/Law in seeing, thinking and action.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Adler on Art's First Amendment Status @nyulaw

Amy Adler, New York University School of Law, is publishing Art's First Amendment Status: A Cultural History of The Masses in volume 50 of the Arizona State Law Journal (2018). Here is the abstract.
This Article explores a little-known chapter in the cultural history of The Masses, the radical, iconoclastic, and artistically cutting-edge publication that was the subject of Learned Hand's landmark First Amendment decision in Masses Publishing Co. v. Patten (1917). The Article sets forth the story of an internal battle about freedom of expression in the arts that had shaken The Masses to its core in the year leading up to Hand's famous decision. The Masses was founded on two central premises: first, that absolute freedom of expression was necessary for its mission; and second, that art and politics must be inextricably intertwined in pursuing this mission because creativity was itself an act of political rebellion against capitalism. Yet this marriage between art and politics was a fragile one; indeed it collapsed in the year before Hand's opinion, as editors tried to constrain the political messages of the artists, leading to an artists' strike that forever changed the magazine. At stake in this conflict were urgent questions about the nature of art and the relationship between art and politics. Ultimately the magazine devoted to free speech and free artistic expression - the magazine that would later be pursued by the government for speaking too frankly - set limits on the free expression of its own artists. By exploring the artistic significance of The Masses and by unearthing this internal censorship battle at the magazine, my goal is to show how the conflict over art at The Masses presaged contemporary debates about the role of art in the First Amendment. The bitter internal struggle over freedom of expression at The Masses anticipated a longstanding problem in free speech law: how do we justify protection for art, often apolitical, irrational, and hard to reduce to a "particularized message," under a vision of the First Amendment that prizes political discourse and assumes a rational marketplace of ideas. The history of The Masses sheds light on our ongoing discomfort about the place of art in the First Amendment.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

CFP: International Roundtable for the Semiotics of Law

From the mailbox:

Call for papers: The 20th International Roundtable for the Semiotics of Law (IRSL 2019). The theme is The Limits of Law. The conference will take place at the Instituto Juridico da Faculdade de Derito da Universidade de Coimbra. Comfirmed speakers include Francois Ost (Universite Saint-Louis, Brussels), Manuel Atienza (Universidad de Alicante), Pierre Moor (Unversite de Lausanne), Fernando Jose Bronze (Universidade de Coimbra), and J. M. Aroso Linhares (Universidade de Coimbra).

Abstracts of 300 words, maximum, should be submitted by January 15th, 2019 to Professor Aroso Linhares at jmarolinh@gmail.com and Anne Wagner at valwagnerfr@yahoo.com. Decisions will be made by January 30, 2019. Here's a link to the call.

January 3, 2019

Didikin on Law as a Linguistic Phenomenon

Anton Didikin, Higher School of Economics; Russian Academy of Sciences, Russian Academy of Sciences Institute of State and Law, has published Law As a Linguistic Phenomenon: Analytical Approach at 13 Proceedings of the Institute of State and Law of the RAS 40 (2018). Here is the abstract.
Law as a regulator of the conduct of social subjects cannot be directly equated with other methods of controlling the behavior in society. The grounds of legally significant actions allow determination of the context of the application of legal rules. The meaning of each legal term, as argued by L. Wittgenstein, depends on its “context of use” and the conventions of use at the moment. Therefore, the interpretation of the rules cannot be based solely on the principles of logic and be completely neutral. On the one hand, “we follow the rule blindly”, but at the same time, the repeatability of the behavior of other people and the ability to observe their behavior (by analogy with the mathematical concepts of addition and sum) encourage “learning” the rules and acting in accordance with the rules. The ascription of the legal language and the “imputation” principle of the legal interpretation of facts allow defining a key concept that cannot exist beyond the constructed social reality. The attempts to analyze non-legal factors appeal not to legal arguments but to other phenomena. The legal term in its nature not only describes empirical facts but also encourages action.The most dismal example of a change in philosophical argumentation and legal reasoning in the philosophy of law is the influence of Quine’s arguments. In the context of the methodology of legal explanation, the naturalization of the epistemology of law is possible only when the limitations and specifics of traditional methods of interpretation of legal reality are considered. The paper focuses on the analysis of some arguments made by the analytical legal philosophers regarding the linguistic content of legal rules with no reference to any social determination or formulation of the significant judgments about the linguistic nature of legal reality.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

January 2, 2019

Monti on Popular Legal Manuals as Sources and Mechanisms of Acquiring Legal Literacy

Annamaria Monti, Bocconi University Department of Law, has published Popular Legal Manuals as Sources and Mechanisms of Acquiring Legal Literacy in Legal Literacy in Premodern Society 191 (M. Korpiola, ed., Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, 2019).
In this article, I am arguing that we can include very different discursive forms and types of law manuals aimed at a wider public of non-jurists among the sources and mechanism of acquiring legal literacy. More precisely, most popularizing written works might be considered a specific form of literature in the field of law, like the legal manuals for laymen. To this purpose, popular legal manuals which were published both in Continental Europe and in common law countries during the nineteenth century formed a very interesting kind of popular legal literature which shared similar features. One might talk of a “transnational” legal literary genre addressed to a non-professional, or a lay public of readers.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

Heinze on Theorizing Law and Historical Memory @Eric_Heinze_

Eric Heinze, Queen Mary University, London, School of Law, has published Theorizing Law and Historical Memory: Denialism and the Pre-Conditions of Human Rights as Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 290/1018. Here is the abstract.
States’ efforts to mould historical memory have long attracted scholarly attention. In recent years, however, a focus on the role of legal norms and mechanisms as tools in those efforts has steadily sharpened. Most scholarship examines that role through particularist analyses, narrowing a specific period of history down to some particular state or region. As such studies accumulate, however, more general patterns emerge. This article explores not any such particular situation, but instead pursues a project of theorising the discipline of law and historical memory as a whole. One conspicuously shared element, particularly within the framework of modern states, is that the histories examined directly involve or ultimately trace back to human rights abuses. As a general matter, then, states’ efforts to deny past or ongoing conduct certainly pose a pragmatic obstacle by obstructing investigations into abuses. Yet it is argued in this article that the relationship between denialism and human rights is (in a Kantian-Habermasian sense) transcendental: the very possibility for the existence of a human rights system presupposes a sphere for open, public scrutiny of state conduct. That condition is not ‘all or nothing’: the extent to which a human rights system becomes possible depends upon the extent of that sphere of public discourse. Unsurprisingly, states with the best human rights records also maintain the types of open public spheres which most reliably ensue against state denials of human rights violations, and thereby provide models of best practice.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

January 1, 2019

Call For Applications: Fellowships, The Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy @baldycenter

From the mailbox:

The Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy at the State University of New York at Buffalo plans to award several fellowships to scholars pursuing important topics in law, legal institutions, and social policy. Applications are invited from junior and senior scholars from law, the humanities, and the social and natural sciences.

Fellows are expected to participate regularly in Baldy Center events, but otherwise have no obligations beyond vigorously pursuing their research. Fellows receive standard university research privileges (access to university libraries, high-speed Internet, office space, computer equipment, phone, website space, working paper series, etc.), and are encouraged to develop collaborative research projects with faculty members where appropriate.

Post-Doctoral Fellowships are available to individuals who have completed the Ph.D. or J.D. but have not yet begun a tenure-track appointment. Post-Doctoral Fellows will receive a stipend of $40,000, up to $2000 in annual professional travel support, and appropriate relocation assistance. Post-doctoral fellowships are ordinarily for a period of two academic years. Information on current and past Baldy Post-Doctoral Fellows is available here.

Senior Fellowships are available for established scholars who wish to work at the Center, typically during a funded sabbatical or research leave. Awardees will receive a living expense allowance of $1,800 per month during the period of their residence as well as appropriate relocation assistance. Senior Fellows typically spend one semester in residence, but other terms are possible. Information on current and past Baldy Senior Fellows is available here.

Application materials include:
(1) a description of the planned research (question, conceptual framework, method, possible findings, importance to the field),
(2) a complete academic and professional resume,
(3) an academic writing sample,
(4) the names and contact information of three academic references asked by the applicant to submit letters, and
(5) if a mid-career or senior applicant, the time period during which the applicant would work at the Center. Completed applications are due no later than Friday, February 1, 2019. (Apply by clicking the button below). For further information, see our answers to frequently asked questions. Additional questions about the Baldy Fellows Program should be addressed to Assistant Director Laura Wirth at baldyassistantdirector@gmail.com or (716) 645-2102.

Primary criteria for selection include intellectual strength of the proposal, demonstrated academic achievement, and promise of future success. Additional considerations include the overall mix of topics, disciplines, and backgrounds of the selected group of Fellows.
For information on current and past Baldy Fellows, see the Baldy Center website.

The Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy is an endowed, internationally recognized institute that advances interdisciplinary research on law, legal institutions, and social policy at the State University of New York at Buffalo. More than 200 faculty members from numerous departments participate in Baldy Center research, conferences, consortia, and publications. The Center maintains cooperative ties to other research centers and hosts distinguished scholars from around the world as visitors, fellows, speakers, and conference participants.

Apply by clicking this link:  Baldy Fellowships in Interdisciplinary Legal Studies 2019


December 19, 2018

Stern on The Legal Imagination in Historical Perspective @ArsScripta

Simon Stern, University of Toronto Faculty of Law, is publishing The Legal Imagination in Historical Perspective in Virtue, Emotion, and Imagination in Legal Reasoning (Amalia Amaya and Maksymilian Del Mar, eds., Hart, 2019). Here is the abstract.
After considering the different meanings that commentators have assigned to "the legal imagination," this chapter asks what is specifically legal about these imaginative uses: what distinctively imaginative traits do we find in law, by contrast with other intellectual domains? In the law, the imagination operates under constraint, whereas in many fields, imaginative activity is associated with free play. Exploring this idea with respect to the introduction of "the reasonable man" in 19th-century law, the chapter takes up an overlooked episode in the history of figure: its unsuccessful use in the law of negotiable instruments, in the 1820s and 30s. By asking what accounts for the move to adopt this figure and to reject it ten years later, and then to find it taken up shortly afterwards in the law of torts, I seek to demonstrate how lawyers' and judges' lateral-looking, analogy-seeking efforts exhibit the legal imagination, operating under constraint, and how the example of an unsuccessful effort can help to reveal the limits that govern this enterprise.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

Witte and Latterell on The Little Commonwealth: The Family as Matrix of Markets and Morality in Early Protestantism

John Witte and Justin Latterell, both of Emory University School of Law, are publishing The Little Commonwealth: The Family as Matrix of Markets and Morality in Markets and Morality: Spirit and Capital in an Age of Inequality (Ted A. Smith and Robert P. Jones, eds., 2018). Here is the abstract.
Max Weber traced the rise of the modern economy back to the convergence of new Protestant teachings on vocation, predestination, and asceticism. It was especially the marital household, this Article argues, that served as an incubator of these Protestant teachings and a laboratory for their application to economic activity. The early modern Protestant family was structured and schooled to cultivate the critical habits of discipline and organization in the economic lives of its members. Early modern Protestant catechisms and household manuals set out in detail the moral and religious rules, rights, and responsibilities that husbands and wives, parents and children, masters and servants had to each other and to their neighbors in different stages of life. It is here, in the elementary ethics and intimate experiences of the Protestant household, that many of the basic norms and habits of modern economic life were slowly instilled and cultivated in each new generation. This chapter offers case studies of Heinrich Bullinger, Robert Cleaver, William Perkins, and Richard Baxter to illustrate how the early modern Protestant family was structured to support church, state, society, and economy alike.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

December 17, 2018

Rise of the Automatons, A Savannah Law Review Symposium Issue, Now Available @SavLawRev @WendellWallach @brianlfrye @cybersimplesec @CGIntelligence

Rise of the Automatons, symposium issue of the Savannah Law Review, is available on the Law Review's website. Among the articles to peruse:

Wendell Wallach, Rise of the Automatons

Brian L. Frye, The Lion, the Bat & the Thermostat: Metaphors on Consciousness

Christine A. Corcos, "I Am the Master": Some Popular Culture Images of AI in Humanity's Courtroom

Jason Zenor, Endowed By Their Creator With Certain Unalienable Rights: The Future Rise of Civil Rights For Artificial Intelligence?

Jeffrey M. Lipshaw, Halting, Intuition, and Action: Alan Turing and the Theoretical Constraints on AI-Lawyering

Charlotte A. Tschider, Deus ex Machina: Regulating Cybersecurity and Artificial Intellgience For Patients of the Future

Philip Segal, Legal Jobs in the Age of Artificial Intelligence: Moving From Today's Limited Universe of Data Toward the Great Beyond

December 14, 2018

RIcca on Bestiaries, Moral Harmonies, and the "Ridiculous" Source of Natural Rights

Mario Ricca, University of Parma, is publishing Ironic Animals: Bestiaries, Moral Harmonies, and the ‘Ridiculous’ Source of Natural Rights in volume 31 of the International Journal for the Semiotics of Law (2018). Here is the abstract.
The Bible recounts that in Eden, Adam gives names to all the animals. But those names are not only representations of the animals’ nature, rather they shape and constitute it. The naming by Adam contains in itself the divide between the human and non-human. Then, there is the Fall: Adam falls and forgets Being. Though he may still remember the names he gave to the animals in Eden, he is no longer sure about their meaning. Adam will have to try to remember his own intentions. Through this effort he can also become aware of how he thinks, who he is, and what was the natural order he knew before the Fall. Medieval bestiaries tell us this story. Bestiaries are works of word play populated by animal figures. They depend on back-and-forth anthropomorphization, or circular metaphor. Animal figures are portrayed as both a mirror of human nature and a window on it. Bestiaries served as means for the moral education of human beings and, at the same time, a way to criticize the current state of humanity, including political and ethical habits. Within the moral irony of medieval bestiaries we can find the origin of the invented nature that modernity will try, subsequently, to insert into natural rights discourse through the teleological oxymoron of their naturalized and naturalizing counter-factuality (natural rights will be simultaneously “being” and “ought,” nature and values/ends). I will propose a historical-semiotic journey through the ironic representations of the human-beasts from the ancient world to contemporaneity. The proposal resulting from this cultural excursion is that the words included in the many national and international Rights declarations operate much like the names Adam gave to the animals and still more as they were re-read in medieval bestiaries, both textual and musical. So, can the words of Rights still serve as musical scores, open to an infinite play of re-signification? If we were able to overcome the modern culture/nature and human being/animal dualisms, we could cast, today as in the past, a zoological gaze on human rights by means of contemporary bestiaries and, in this way, perhaps find the gist of rights’ names and our ever regained and ever lost again humanity.
The full text is not available for download.

December 13, 2018

Nadler on The Value of Homicide Victims in "The Wire" @NorthwesternLaw @ABFResearch

Janice Nadler, Northwestern University School of Law, and American Bar Foundation, is publishing 'Deserve Got Nothin’ to Do with It': The Value of Homicide Victims in The Wire in the University of Chicago Legal Forum. Here is the abstract.
The moral principle of placing the highest value on human life is a basic one. It underlies a central responsibility of criminal law. But within the universe of the American crime drama series The Wire, these fundamental principles break down. The focus of government investigations is framed by the drug war, which sometimes distorts the goals and decisions of law enforcement strategy. At most, each killing in the inner city is typically acknowledged by the state in the form of an uptick in the police department’s weekly ComStat counts, by the press as a story buried deep within the paper, or not mentioned at all. In this Article, I argue that the frequency of killings and the sheer number of victims can itself result in the distortion of basic values and priorities. Exposure to large human death tolls can result in what researchers have called psychic numbing. Against the background of a large aggregate tragedy, each new death represents an incremental increase, which fails to register emotionally because our compassion becomes fatigued. In The Wire, psychically-numbed characters pursue institutional goals unencumbered by the negative emotions that otherwise might prompt them to question their participation in acts that lead to perverse outcomes. Less visible is the implicit hierarchical ordering of victims which, in addition to psychic numbing, contributes to law operating in a manner not always predicted by the law in the books. There were many premeditated murders depicted in The Wire, and the responsible individuals were depicted as almost never receiving punishment by the criminal justice system. This fictional depiction of the absence of accountability for killings is unfortunately largely accurate in many large U.S. cities today.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Call For Submissions: ABA Silver Gavel Awards, 2019 @ABAesq @abapubliced

From the mailbox:

The ABA invites submissions for the 2019 Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts. The nine eligible categories include books, commentary, documentaries, drama and literature, magazines, multimedia, newspapers, radio, and television. More here. 

December 12, 2018

Donelson and Hannikainen on Fuller and the Folk: The Inner Morality of Law Revisited @LSULawCenter

Raff Donelson, LSU A&M and LSU Law Center, and Ivar Hannikainen, University of Sheffield, Department of Philosophy, and Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, are publishing Fuller and the Folk: The Inner Morality of Law Revisited in 3 Oxford Studies in Experimental Philosophy (T. Lombrozo and S. Nichols, eds, Oxford University Press, forthcoming). Here is the abstract.
The experimental turn in philosophy has reached several sub-fields including ethics, epistemology, and metaphysics. This paper is among the first to apply experimental techniques to questions in the philosophy of law. Specifically, we examine Lon Fuller's procedural natural law theory. Fuller famously claimed that legal systems necessarily observe eight principles he called "the inner morality of law." We evaluate Fuller's claim by surveying both ordinary people and legal experts about their intuitions about legal systems. We conclude that, at best, we should be skeptical of Fuller's inner morality of law in light of the experimental data.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

December 11, 2018

Said and Silbey on Narrative Topoi in the Digital Age @zahr_said @JSilbey

Zahr Said, University of Washington School of Law, and Jessica M. Silbey, Northeastern University School of Law, are publishing Narrative Topoi in the Digital Age in volume 68 of the the Journal of Legal Education. Here is the abstract.
Decades of thoughtful law and humanities scholarship have made the case for using humanistic texts and methods in the legal classroom. We build on that scholarship by identifying and describing three “narrative topoi” of the twenty-first century – podcasts, twitter and fake news. We use the term “topos” (from the Greek meaning “place”) and its plural, “topoi,” to mean “a literary commonplace” and “general setting for discussion” in the context of literary forms. Like an identifiable genre, narrative topoi are familiar story paths for audiences to travel. These narrative topoi live in contemporary popular culture and are products of digital technology’s capacity to share and shape communication in new ways that draw on older narrative conventions and forms. In a law school, drawing on new narrative topoi can reorient legal analysis through inquiry into twenty-first-century problems of language, narrative form, authenticity, and audiences. Legal educators may also highlight historical continuity between cultural and legal history and today’s forms and experiences, foregrounding issues central to legal skills, such as analogic reasoning, advocacy, counseling, and factual analysis. We address all of these points while exploring particular examples of these narrative topoi of our digital age.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

December 10, 2018

CFP: Special Workshop at the "Dignity, Diversity, Democracy" Conference of the International Association for the Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy, Lucerne, Switzerland, July 7-13, 2019

CFP for Special Workshop at the "Dignity, Diversity, Democracy" Conference (Annual Congress of the International Association for the Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy) Lucerne, Switzerland, July 7-13, 2019 (at the University of Lucerne)

Convenors: Andrew Majeske, Gilad Ben-Nun

Workshop Description

In the United States the contentious midterm elections of 2018 will occur shortly. The narratives dominating the public conversation in respect to immigration (currently in the news is the migrant caravan of Honduran refugees, and the move to restrict birth-right citizenship) and nationalism (“make American great again”, and “America first”) by all appearances are controlled respectively by the far right and the far left of the political spectrum. Certain it is that these more extreme narratives garner the bulk of mainstream media attention, and offer the least opportunity for identifying a common ground upon which productive public discussion can work to counter the fear-mongering and demonizing that constitute the core of these narratives. A similar dynamic has been playing out in many if not most of the nations that constitute the EU. 

It is the hope of the conveners that the papers that will be shared in this special workshop will work towards addressing , from the interdisciplinary standpoint of law, literature & culture, the problem of the missing middle, and to identify ways in which a different narrative can be structured that can either bridge the extremes of the political left and right, or if that is not feasible, to work towards creating a new narrative (or resurrecting an older one). This new or restored narrative must be one that creates a broad and stable middle ground, a middle-ground that highlights the core values of dignity, democracy & diversity, and the principles that support these values—namely, that the only legitimate government is one based on the consent of those governed, and its necessary analogue, that there is at the least a fundamental initial political equality of all persons. Whether this new or restored narrative will be of sufficient power and vitality to push the extreme narratives back to their native ground, the margins, is uncertain; but it is the position of the conveners that we have a duty to try. 

The conveners are therefore hopeful that given the myriad of perspectives and approaches that characterize the interdiscipline of law, literature & culture, that the workshop will be productive in identifying such new or restored narratives with which we can begin to confront what is presenting itself as the fundamental crisis of our times.  We trust that the urgency of establishing a trans-Atlantic (and hopefully even broader) dialogue on this theme is evident to all.

The special workshop will be held in English. 

If you are interested in presenting a paper in this workshop, please send a short abstract (max. 300 words) to the workshop conveners by January 31, 2019. Decisions will be made by February 28, 2019. Full papers will be circulated among the workshop participants approximately two weeks before the start of the conference. 


Andrew Majeske (John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY), New York)

Bilad Ben-Nun (University of Leipzig)

Kirkby on Reconstituting Canada: The Enfranchisement and Disenfranchisement of "Indians": c 1837-1900 @CoelKirkby

Coel Kirkby, University of Sydney Law School, is publishing Reconstituting Canada: The Enfranchisement and Disenfranchisement of ‘Indians’, c. 1837-1900 in volume 69 of the University of Toronto Law Journal (2019). Here is the abstract.
The constitutional history of Canada and First Nations is often told as the promise fulfilled of Aboriginal rights and treaties. I will challenge this dominant story by recovering the story of the enfranchisement and disenfranchisement of ‘Indian’ subjects in the first three decades of Canadian confederation. Far from forgotten actors in a foretold play, ‘Indian’ voters were crucial to determining the outcome of three closely-contested federal elections and challenging settler ideas of the nascent Canadian nation. The question of the ‘Indian’ franchise was always embedded in competing constitutional visions for Confederation. The Canadian dream of transforming and assimilating Indigenous peoples would give way to a cynical idea of segregation under the permanent regime of the Indian Act. If the Indian franchise was the apotheosis of assimilation, its revocation marked the start of racial segregation. I juxtapose these Canadian constitutional visions with two alternative possibilities. The Anishinaabe-dominated Grand General Council accepted the franchise as part of its vision of reconciling membership in both their treaty-recognized nations and the Canadian state. The Confederacy Council of the Six Nations, in contrast, rejected the franchise as an existential threat to Haudenosaunee self-rule mediated by a treaty relationship with the Canadian and imperial governments. Recovering the constitutional contests driving Indian enfranchisement and disenfranchisement shows us of how the successful imposition of a single vision of a white democracy silenced alternative visions of a multi-national coexistence. It also reminds us of the multiplicity of constitutional possibilities for a common constitutional future.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Suuberg on Buck v. Bell, American Eugenics, and the Bad Man Test: Putting Limits on Newgenics in the 21st Century @alessuube

Alessandra Suuberg, indepdendant scholar, has published Buck v. Bell, American Eugenics, and the Bad Man Test: Putting Limits on Newgenics in the 21st Century. Here is the abstract.
With its 1927 decision in Buck v. Bell, the Supreme Court embraced the American eugenics program, which was then at its peak. An association with fascism and a discredited pseudoscience was one reason why the Buck case would later became infamous. Another reason was that, rather than resolving a true conflict, the case was seen as contrived: designed strategically to validate a particular Virginia law and ensure the success of the eugenics movement. Because the strategists were a close-knit group of elites and eugenics proponents, and the guinea pig at the center was poor and disadvantaged, the case provided a striking example of the way that a legal system intended to protect the most vulnerable members of society can instead be manipulated and used against them in the name of reform. Today, it is important to remember Buck and its legacy in order to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past.
Download the article froM SSRN at the link.

Kirkby on The Uses of Primitive Law in Anglo-American Concepts of Modern Law, 1861-1961 @CoelKirkby

Coel Kirkby, University of Sydney Law School, is publishing Law Evolves: The Uses of Primitive Law in Anglo-American Concepts of Modern Law, 1861-1961 in the American Journal of Legal History (2018). Here is the abstract.
This study traces how Anglo-American legal thinkers used primitive law to develop their concepts of modern law in the century from Austin to Hart. It first examines how Maine developed his historical jurisprudence as a form of social evolutionary analysis of law. Next, it traces the development of legal anthropology as a distinct discipline combining the scientific method of participant observation with the legal method of the case study. Finally, it looks at how Hart uses primitive law to make his famous argument that law was ‘the union of primary and secondary rules’. In each case, legal thinkers develop their concepts of modern law through a foundational contrast with primitive law. This is a striking feature of much Anglo-American jurisprudence that cuts across the borders of the positivist, natural, historical, realist, and other schools of jurisprudence. Appreciating these new uses of primitive law is a first step in excavating an intellectual history of legal thought grounded in the context of colonial knowledge.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Mirow on Léon Duguit and the Social Function of Property in Argentina @fiulaw

M. C. Mirow, Florida International University College of Law, is publishing Léon Duguit and the Social Function of Property in Argentina in Léon Duguit and the Social Obligation Norm of Property: A Translation and Global Exploration (Paul Babie and Jessica Viven-Wilksch, eds., Cham: Springer, forthcoming). Here is the abstract.
Despite its early introduction to Argentina in 1911, the doctrine of the social function of property was not quickly appropriated into the Argentine legal system. Only after a period of more than thirty-five years did this concept of property find expression in this country through the Constitution of 1949, the Peronist constitution drafted under the guidance of the Arturo Enrique Sampay. Duguit's writings formed part of a broader understanding of the social function of property that was informed by various scholars and sources, and particularly by works on Christian humanism and the social doctrine of the Roman Catholic church. Although mentioned in the debates of the Argentine Constitution of 1949, Duguit was only one of a variety of sources employed by advocates of the doctrine, and his direct influence in the area was significantly less than one might expect considering the historical link between his lectures in Buenos Aires and the creation of the doctrine.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

December 5, 2018

A Blog Devoted To Strange Tales of Crime @HorribleSanity

If you enjoy odd tales of crime and death, check out the very entertaining blog Strange Company, devoted to the weird and the macabre. Your host is Undine, who also maintains The World of Edgar Allan Poe. Follow her on Twitter @HorribleSanity.

Hammill on 40 Years At the Baldy Center: A Law and Society Hub in Buffalo @baldycenter

Luke Hammill, University at Buffalo Law School, has published 40 Years at the Baldy Center: A Law and Society Hub in Buffalo in Buffalo. Buffalo: University at Buffalo Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy. 2018. Here is the abstract.
The University at Buffalo’s Baldy Center for Law & Social Policy just turned 40. That’s 40 years of groundbreaking sociolegal research, conferences, teaching, support for graduate students and much more. To commemorate the Center’s many accomplishments, this monograph traces through its history, showing that it helped put (and keep) Buffalo on the map as a hub in the Law and Society movement. The monograph draws on a year’s worth of research and interviews with the key characters in the Baldy Center’s story. Thousands of pages of University at Buffalo archives, court records, academic papers, historical documents and more were reviewed to piece together a narrative showing the Baldy Center’s tremendous impact on institutions, the academic literature and people’s careers. What emerges is a picture of a place where interdisciplinary collaboration and unique ideas find a home that wouldn’t exist if not for an endowment created by a civic-minded Buffalo lawyer who died in the mid-20th century and couldn’t have imagined the legacy that awaited him.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

December 4, 2018

CFP: Workshop on the Protection of Cultural Heritage and Municipal Law, April 5, 2019 @asilorg

From the American Society of International Law's Cultural Heritage and the Arts Interest Group (CHAIG) and Fordham University School of Law's Urban Center, in collaboration with the Quebec Society of International Law (SQDI), a Call for Papers for a Workshop on the Protection of Cultural Heritage and Municipal Law.

The workshop will be held at Fordham University’s School of Law, in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, on Friday, April 5, 2019. The protection of cultural heritage has long been understood as the province primarily of international law, but this workshop will highlight the place of municipal or local law in the discourse, exploring continuities and discontinuities with international law. Do international law and municipal law draw on each other’s strengths? Do they complement each other in terms of their shortcomings? Do they connect, or are they disconnected, in practice? While international law is addressed to nations, local governance is highly relevant to the protection of cultural heritage, and yet sometimes working in silos from other cities, provinces or states, as well as national governments.

Paper proposals of no more than 500 words should be sent to sabrina.tremblayhuet@usherbrooke.ca before Sunday, December 30th, 2018. The authors of the selected proposals will be notified by Friday, January 18th, 2019. Proposals from emerging scholars and graduate students are highly encouraged. Draft papers must be submitted no later than Monday, March 18th, 2019, for circulation to the selected participants in preparation for the workshop. Please note that no funding is available to cover transportation and accommodation for participants. Attendance at the workshop is, however, free of charge, subject to prior registration. Lunch will be provided to workshop participants.

More about the CFP here.

Daniel Dae Kim, Warren Hsu Leonard Working on Korean-American Legal Drama "Exhibit A" For ABC

Daniel Dae Kim (Lost, Hawai'i Five-O) is producing and starring in a new legal drama for ABC, to be called Exhibit A. The show will center on a Korean-American former prosecutor, Andrew Cho, seeking to put his life back together after enemies sabotage his legal career. Warren Hsu Leonard is also executive producing and writing; Mr. Leonard is a Harvard Law graduate who practiced corporate law and worked on the Amazon series Goliath and How To Get Away With Murder.

Mr. Kim originally worked on Exhibit A for CBS. The series is based on the Korean series My Lawyer, Mr. Jo.

More here from Deadline.

November 28, 2018

CFP: Interface: Journal of European Languages and Literatures: Visual Discourse and Its Circulation Between Europe and Asia

From the mailbox:

Submission Deadline: March 31, 2019
Guest Editor: Go Koshino (Hokkaido University)

Visual Discourse and its Circulation between Europe and Asia
Language-focused discourses have long lost their privileged position in humanities since discourse came to be understood as any communicative social practice through which meaning is created. In interface Issue 9 we would like to focus on Visual Discourse (i.e., those social practices that depend extensively on visual cues for the production of meaning) and its Circulation between the East and the West. Pictorial texts (such as still and moving images, the built environment, etc.) are easy to get across language barrier on the one hand; on the other hand, the ambiguity of visual image can generate more cultural misunderstandings and even new meanings in the course of cross-cultural communication
While we very much welcome articles seeking to expand the realm of research in Visual Discourse, we also invite articles that pay attention to the boundary of visual text itself so as to examine the very nature of visuality in the multiple cultural contexts. Firstly, an important issue we would like to see discussed is translation (adaptation) between visual and other types of text and medium (literary, acoustic, etc.). Secondly, we would appreciate discussions of the effects in the meaning-creation of invisible elements (visually unrepresentable) appearing alongside the visual discourse, and which are often influenced by the historical, cultural, and political contexts.
interface Journal of European Languages and Literatures is inviting original unpublished papers written in English, French, German, Spanish Russian or Italian for interface Issue 9, to be published in June 2019 that could address, but need not be restricted to, the following topics:

-Transcultural and cross-genre translation (adaptation) including visual language.
-Visualization of invisible or invisiblization of visual factors in the process of cross-cultural interface
-Visual aspects of cultural commemoration and “memory-scape” on wars, revolutions, and other significant events
-Politics of visual representation in the media discourse.

Papers should be submitted online at http://interface.org.tw/ no later than March 31, 2019.

All potential authors should consult our website for Author Guidelines

November 26, 2018

Call for Papers: 2019 University of Massachusetts Law Review Roundtable Symposium on Law and Media

From the mailbox:

The UMass Law Review has issued the following call for papers. Download the call in PDF here, and please share it with any interested scholarly communities.


November 14, 2018

We are pleased to announce the 2019 UMass Law Review Roundtable Symposium, currently titled “Law and Media.” In the age where the 24/7 news cycle and social media have impacted current politics and where data protection, personal branding, and technology have affected entertainment and media as well as the rule of law, an investigation of the relationship between law and the media of our current times is timely and warranted. Accordingly, the UMass Law Review seeks thoughtful, insightful, and original presentations relating to the impact of the law on media as well as the impact of media on the law.

Interested participants should submit a 500-word abstract to cshannon@umassd.edu, with “Attn: Conference Editor – Symposium Submission” in the subject line by December 31st, 2018 for consideration. Selected participants will be notified by the end of January and invited to present their work at the 2019 UMass Law Review Symposium taking place in late March of 2019. Selected participants may also submit a scholarly work for potential publication in the 2019-2020 UMass Law Review Journal. If you have questions about submissions or the Symposium, please contact our Business/Conference Editor, Casey Shannon or Editor-In-Chief, Kayla Venckauskas (kvenckauskas@umassd.edu). We thank you in advance for your submission.


Kayla Venckauskas

Casey Shannon
Business/Conference Editor

Thornton on Challenging the Legal Profession a Century On: The Case of Edith Haynes @ANU_Law

Margaret Thornton, ANU College of Law, is publishing Challenging the Legal Profession a Century On: The Case of Edith Haynes in volume 44 of the University of Western Australia Law Review (2018). Here is the abstract.
This article focuses on Edith Haynes’ unsuccessful attempt to enter the legal profession in Western Australia. Although admitted to articles as a law student in 1900, she was denied permission to sit her intermediate examination by the Supreme Court of WA (In re Edith Haynes (1904) 6 WAR 209). Edith Haynes is of particular interest for two reasons. First, the decision denying her permission to sit the exam was an example of a ‘persons’ case’, which was typical of an array of cases in the English common law world in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in which courts determined that women were not persons for the purpose of entering the professions or holding public office. Secondly, as all (white) women had been enfranchised in Australia at the time, the decision of the Supreme Court begs the question as to the meaning of active citizenship. The article concludes by hypothesising a different outcome for Edith Haynes by imagining an appeal to the newly established High Court of Australia.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Coffee on A Radical Revolution in Thought: Frederick Douglass on the Slave's Perspective on Republican Freedom @KCL_Law

Alan Coffee, King's College London, Dickson Poon School of Law, is publishing A Radical Revolution in Thought: Frederick Douglass on the Slave's Perspective on Republican Freedom in Radical Republicanism: Recovering the Tradition's Popular Heritage (Bruno Leipold, Karma Nabulsi and Stuart White, eds., Oxford: Oxford University Press) (forthcoming).
While the image of the slave as the antithesis of the freeman is central to republican freedom, it is striking to note that slaves themselves have not contributed to how this condition is understood. The result is a one-sided conception of both freedom and slavery, which leaves republicanism unable to provide an equal and robust protection for historically outcast people. I draw on the work of Frederick Douglass – long overlooked as a significant contributor to republican theory – to show one way why this is so. Focusing the American Revolution, the subsequent republican government established new political institutions to maintain the collective interests of the whole population. The political revolution was held in place by processes of public reason that reflected the values and ideas of the people that had rebelled. The black population, however, had not been part of this revolution. After emancipation, black Americans were required to accept terms of citizenship that had already been defined, leaving them socially dominated, subject to the prejudices and biases within the prevailing ideas of public discourse. Douglass argued that republican freedom under law is always dependent on a more fundamental revolution, that he calls a ‘radical revolution in thought’, in which the entire system of social norms and practices are reworked together by members of all constituent social groups – women and men, black and white, rich and poor – so that it reflects a genuinely collaborative achievement. Only then can we begin the republican project of contestatory freedom as independence or non-domination that today’s republicans take for granted.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

Gould on Legal Duplicity and the Scapegoat Mentality in Paul Laurence Dunbar's Jim Crow America @rrgould

Rebecca Gould, College of Arts and Law, University of Birmingham; Harvard University, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, is publishing Justice Deferred: Legal Duplicity and the Scapegoat Mentality in Paul Laurence Dunbar's Jim Crow America in Law & Literature. Here is the abstract.
Although best known as a poet, African-American writer Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906) developed a unique voice in his fiction. This essay explores the bifurcation Dunbar discerned between the law as an instrument of justice and as a stabilizer of the segregationist status quo in Jim Crow America. Dunbar creates characters who are systematically scapegoated for crimes they did not commit in order to expose the law’s precarious relationship to justice. His treatment of lynching as a paradigmatic manifestation of the scapegoat mechanism links this practice to a political theory of violence, whereby the innocent are punished for the crimes of the guilty, and society requires their sacrifice in order to redeem its guilt. Without relinquishing his faith in the law, Dunbar used prose narratives to expose the disjuncture between law and justice made manifest by the US Supreme Court’s rationalization of racial discrimination in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896). Beyond considering the light Dunbar’s fictions shed on the relationship between law and justice, I locate these interventions within a longer history of thinking about the role of the writer as a scapegoat who enables society to sin without experiencing guilt.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Cavangh on The Imperial Constitution of the Law Officers of the Crown @edward_cavanagh

Edward Cavanagh, University of Cambridge, is publishing The Imperial Constitution of the Law Officers of the Crown: Legal Thought on War and Colonial Government, 1719–1774 in the Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History (2018). Here is the abstract.
The rule of conquest came to receive different applications for different parts of the British Empire. How this happened, and who was responsible for it happening, are the interests of this article. Calling upon court reports, parliamentary records, and correspondence between various officeholders in the early Hanoverian government, attention will be drawn in particular to the attorney general and the solicitor general (the law officers of the crown) and the advice they offered upon the governance of colonies between 1719 and 1774. Focusing upon the conventions that pertain to war and conquest in Ireland, the Caribbean, India, and North America, this article reveals inconsistency in doctrine, but consistency in the procedures by which law officers of the crown acquired influence over proceedings in the houses of parliament and in the courts of common law and equity. Just as often in their formal capacities as in their informal capacities, the attorney general and the solicitor general were pivotal to the development of the imperial constitution, in constant response, as they were, to the peculiar demands of various colonies and plantations in the British Empire.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Goldmann on The Entanglement of Sovereignty and Property in International Law @MattHGoldmann

Matthias Goldmann, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law; Goethe University Frankfurt - Research Center SAFE; Goethe University Frankfurt - Cluster of Excellence Normative Orders; Goethe University Frankfurt, has published The Entanglement of Sovereignty and Property in International Law: From German Southwest Africa to the Great Land Grab? Here is the abstract.
This article argues that an intricate entanglement existed between sovereignty and property in German Southwest Africa. Germany’s control over Southwest Africa depended considerably on European settlements, which received logistical, financial, and military support by Germany. The result was a symbiotic relationship between the government and private economic actors, a form of state capitalism under which private settlements contributed to the establishment of territorial control, a prerequisite of sovereign power. Contractual relationships suggesting formally equal relationships, and during and after the genocide, a mix of arguments drawing on tort law and an idea of formal legality, provided crucial justification for the assumption of territorial control. This description contradicts standard accounts of sovereignty, which tend to turn a blind eye on private property. The article discusses the implications of these findings for today’s international law, including for state responsibility for transnational corporations and the so-called Great Land Grab, the acquisition of vast lands in Africa by foreign public and private agents.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

November 22, 2018

ICYMI: Davison-Vecchione on How the EU Is Like the Marvel Universe @dejdavisonvec

ICYMI: Daniel Davison-Vecchione, Department of Sociology, University of Cambridge, has published How is the EU like the Marvel Universe? Legal Experientialism and Law as a Shared Universe at 30 Law and Literature 185 (2017). Here is the abstract.
This article considers the ontological and epistemological questions about European Union (EU) law raised by the phenomenon known as constitutional pluralism, and the challenge this presents to theories of law based on the concept of a legal system. It does so by heuristically comparing the EU legal order and the “Marvel Universe” of Marvel Comics, as both an extension and critique of Ronald Dworkin's analogy between interpreting law and writing a chain novel. The article explicates the concept of a “storyworld” in narrative theory and discusses the Marvel Universe's significance in this respect. It then outlines the similarities between EU law and the Marvel Universe, using the concept of a storyworld to build and apply a theoretical framework that can move beyond orthodox views of constitutional pluralism. Lastly, the article uses these insights to begin laying the groundwork for a new theory of law termed “legal experientialism,” which understands law as an irreducible world that is both experienced and constructed through our collective interpretive practices.