ROUNDUP: Law and Humanities 07.11.18

News from the world of law and humanities.

Some Conferences, Calls for Papers, and Calls for Panelists


The Critical Legal Conference 2018 takes place at The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK, September 6-8, 2018. Registration is now open. More here at the Conference webpage.


The LSAANZ (Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand) Conference 2018 will take place December 12-15, 2018, at the University of Wollongong. 

The call for abstracts is open until July 20, 2018. 



Call for Contributions: New Open Access Peer-Review Website

The new open access website is issuing a call for essays, articles, interviews, book reviews, teaching resources, photographs, poems, and other materials related to the study of law and the humanities (broadly defined). All publications are peer-reviewed. As you can see, we are just getting started and will be making changes to the design of the website over the next few weeks. If you are interested in publishing with us, please keep us in mind. For more information, or to inquire about publication, please send an email to a member of the Board:

ccorcos at

sghosh01 at

david.papke at

csharp at




ASLH Cromwell Fellowships: DEADLINE EXTENDED to JULY 20

In 2018, the William Nelson Cromwell Foundation will make available a number of $5,000 fellowship awards to support research and writing in American legal history by early-career scholars. Early career generally includes those researching or writing a PhD dissertation (or equivalent project) and recent recipients of a graduate degree working on their first major monograph or research project. The number of awards made is at the discretion of the Foundation. In the past several years, the trustees of the Foundation have made five to nine awards.

Application Process for 2018

The Committee for Research Fellowships and Awards of the American Society for Legal History (ASLH) reviews the applications and makes recommendations to the Foundation. (The Cromwell Foundation was established in 1930 to promote and encourage scholarship in legal history, particularly in the colonial and early national periods of the United States. The Foundation has supported the publication of legal records as well as historical monographs.)

Applicants should submit a description of their proposed project (double-spaced, maximum 6 pages including notes; include a working title), a budget, a timeline, and a short c.v. (no longer than 3 pages). The budget and timeline can be part of the Project Description or separate. (There is no application form.) Two letters of recommendation from academic referees should be sent directly to the Selection Committee via email attachment, preferably as .pdf files. Applications must be submitted electronically (preferably in one .pdf file) no later than midnight July 20, 2018.

Please send all materials to the Selection Committee at <email>(note: email not provided by the committee).

  • Your application should make clear the relevance of law to your project. The most successful applicants demonstrate how law (broadly construed) is at the center of their projects, and how their research will tell us something new about law.
  • Your proposal should engage with relevant scholarship in the field. While this discussion can be brief, the most successful applicants explain how their projects tell us something new.
  • Your application should have a clear budget that is specific about how and where you plan to spend research funds.
  • You will receive a confirmation email within a few days of submitting your application; if you do not receive such an email, please follow up.

Successful applicants will be notified by early November. An announcement of the awards will also be made at the annual meeting of the American Society of Legal History.

PhD Fellowship, School of Humanities and Digital Sciences: Deadline for Applications August 31, 2018

The Tilburg School of Humanities and Digital Sciences of Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands, invites applications for a four-year PhD position (1,0 fte) in continental political philosophy, the philosophy of culture, or cultural studies, starting November 1, 2018 or later this year, on the topic of social media and the public sphere.

Profile Candidates must hold a MA/MSc degree or equivalent by the time of appointment. Apart from philosophy graduates, candidates with degrees in other relevant disciplines are welcome if they can demonstrate a high level of familiarity with political philosophy or philosophy of culture. The selected candidate will be a member of the Graduate School of the Tilburg School of Humanities and Digital Sciences.

The selected candidate is expected to become member of the research groups Philosophy of Humanity, Culture and Ethics and Rapid Social & Cultural Transformations. They sustain large international networks and regularly organize conferences, workshops and seminars in different traditions of continental philosophy and cultural studies, respectively. The candidate is expected to have written a PhD thesis on the topic of social media and the public sphere by the end of the contract.

The PhD thesis is funded by the Advancing Society: Impact program of Tilburg University, theme: Empowering Resilient Society. The subject of the thesis is expected to be an interdisciplinary research, which combines two or more of the following disciplines: Philosophy of Humanity, Culture, and Society; Philosophy of Art and Media; Cultural Studies; Literary theory; Online culture and Digitalization Philosophy of Law; Critical Theory; Democratic Theory. The thesis will be written under the supervision of Prof. M.S. Prange (Department of Philosophy); Prof. O.M. Heynders (Department Cultural Studies); Dr. M. Bot (Department of Law).

This PhD project explores possibilities for democratic communication in an age of social media and digital technologies. The project explores how social media and digital technologies can facilitate free communication among equal members of democratic publics, and it explores how social media and digital technologies can undermine such free communication, for instance through bots and trolling and by providing platforms for narratives, symbols, and sentiments of inequality, particularly of race, religion, gender and sexuality.

More about the position, including application information, here.




Some Recent Publications of Interest


Mark Goodale, University of Lausanne, Anthropology and Law (NYU Press, 2017).  Here from the publisher’s website is a description of the book’s contents.

From legal responsibility for genocide to rectifying past injuries to indigenous people, the anthropology of law addresses some of the crucial ethical issues of our day. Over the past twenty-five years, anthropologists have studied how new forms of law have reshaped important questions of citizenship, biotechnology, and rights movements, among many others. Meanwhile, the rise of international law and transitional justice has posed new ethical and intellectual challenges to anthropologists. Anthropology and Law provides a comprehensive overview of the anthropology of law in the post-Cold War era. Mark Goodale introduces the central problems of the field and builds on the legacy of its intellectual history, while a foreword by Sally Engle Merry highlights the challenges of using the law to seek justice on an international scale. The book’s chapters cover a range of intersecting areas including language and law, history, regulation, indigenous rights, and gender. For a complete understanding of the consequential ways in which anthropologists have studied, interacted with, and critiqued, the ways and means of law, Anthropology and Law is required reading.


Law and Literature (Kieran Dolin, ed., Cambridge University Press, 2018)(Cambridge Critical Concepts). Here from the publisher’s website is a description of the books contents.

Law and Literature presents an authoritative, fresh and accessible new overview of the many ways in which law and literature interact. Written by a team of international experts, it provides a multi-focused history of literary studies’ critical interest in ideas of law and justice. It examines the effects of law on writers and their work, ranging from classical tragedy to comics, and from East Africa to Elizabethan England. Over twenty chapters, contributors reveal the intricate and multivalent historical interactions between law and literature, both past and present, and trace the intellectual genesis of the concept of law in literary studies, focusing on major developments in the history of the interdisciplinary project of law and literature, as well as the changing ideas of law, and the cultural contests in which it has figured. Law and Literature will appeal to graduates and scholars working on the intersection between law and literature and in key related areas such as literature and human rights. Provides a multi-focused history of literature’s critical interest in ideas of law and justice Explores how legal concepts and practices contribute to literary studies Presents a history of law and literature, and its contemporary applications

Law and Literature

Forthcoming from Springer: The Art of Law: Artistic Representations and Iconography of Law and Justice in Context, from the Middle Ages to the First World War (S. Huygebaert, G. Martyn, V. Paumen, E. Bousmar, and X. Rousseaux, eds., 2018) (Ius Gentium: Comparative Perspectives on Law and Justice). Here from the publisher’s website is a description of the book’s contents.

The contributions to this volume were written by historians, legal historians and art historians, each using his or her own methods and sources, but all concentrating on topics from the broad subject of historical legal iconography. How have the concepts of law and justice been represented in (public) art from the Late Middle Ages onwards? Justices and rulers had their courtrooms, but also churches, decorated with inspiring images. At first, the religious influence was enormous, but starting with the Early Modern Era, new symbols and allegories began appearing. Throughout history, art has been used to legitimise the act of judging, but artists have also satirised the law and the lawyers; architects and artisans have engaged in juridical and judicial projects and, in some criminal cases, convicts have even been sentenced to produce works of art. The book illustrates and contextualises the various interactions between law and justice on the one hand, and their artistic representations in paintings, statues, drawings, tapestries, prints and books on the other.


Merridee L. Bailey and Kimberley-Joy Knight, Writing Histories of Law and Emotion, 38 Journal of Legal History 117 (2017). Here is the abstract.

In recent years the study of emotions in the past has received considerable attention. At the same time, many historians of law have shown reluctance to acknowledge and systematically explore emotions in legal sources and legal contexts. This issue of the Journal of Legal History addresses this imbalance and demonstrates how emotions have played important roles in legal reasoning, legal doctrine, the behaviour of legal actors, and the development of law over time. This article investigates recent developments in the study of the history of emotions and of emotions in contemporary law, before assessing the challenges of writing law and emotions histories. It argues for the importance of utilizing both legal and extra-legal source material to uncover the relationship between legal rationality and emotion; to gain insights into the emotional worlds of those participating in legal systems; and to provide a deeper understanding of the workings of the law.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.


Thomas McSweeney, William & Mary Law School, is publishing Fiction in the Code in volume 34 of the Georgia State University Law Review (2018). Here is the abstract.

One of the major branches of the field of law and literature is often described as “law as literature.” Scholars of law as literature examine the law using the tools of literary analysis. The scholarship in this subfield is dominated by the discussion of narrative texts: confessions, victim-impact statements, and, above all, the judicial opinion. This article will argue that we can use some of the same tools to help us understand non-narrative texts, such as law codes and statutes. Genres create expectations. We do not expect a law code to be literary. Indeed, we tend to dissociate the law code from the kind of imaginative fiction we expect to find in a narrative text. This article will take a historical example, the medieval Icelandic legal manuscript known as Konungsbók, and examine it for its fictional elements. This article will examine Konungsbók for the ways in which it creates an imagined world, populated by free, equal householders, a world that was very different from the Iceland in which its creator lived. Its creator may have created it less to tell his reader anything about the law as it stood in thirteenth-century Iceland than as an elegy to a world he thought he had lost. It therefore stands as a testament to the law code’s literary potential.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Frederick Schauer, University of Virginia School of Law, is publishing Law as a Malleable Artifact in Law as an Artifact (Lukas Burazin, Kenneth Einar Himma, and Corrado Roversi, eds., Oxford University Press, 2018 Forthcoming). Here is the abstract.

Within contemporary analytic philosophy of law, most of the scholars who understand themselves to be engaged in conceptual analysis of the concept of law perceive that project to be analytic and descriptive, but not normative. But the concept of law is itself a human creation, and what humans can create humans can also re-create. And thus there is a different project of conceptual prescription or conceptual revision, one in which the goal is to reflect on (and to prescribe, at times) on how a society ought to understand the very idea of law – what concept of law a society ought to have. This project, which under one reading may have informed both H.L.A. Hart and Lon Fuller in their 1958 debate, need not displace the analytic/descriptive project of conceptual analysis of the concept of law, but, given its provenance going back at least as far as Jeremy Bentham, nor should it be dismissed from what John Austin labeled “the province of jurisprudence.”

Download the essay from SSRN at the link.


Add To Your Law and Popular Culture Media Collection
The acclaimed TV movie Mr. and Mrs. Loving, starring Timothy Hutton and Lela Rochon, is now available for streaming on Amazon’s Prime Video service. The movie is not currently available on DVD. The film dramatizes the story of Richard and Mildred Loving, who took their conviction for their interracial marriage under Virginia law to the Supreme Court. In 1967, the Court struck down Virginia’s statute on the grounds that it violated the U. S. Constitution’s Due Process and Equal Protection clauses. 
Other films that have also brought this case to the big or small screens include Loving (2016), starring Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga, and the documentary The Loving Story (2011). The AALS Law and Film Committee will screen The Loving Story as its film choice at the AALS Annual Meeting in New Orleans, on Thursday, January 3, 2019, at 6 p.m.
Read more about the Loving case in some of the materials listed below.

ACLU, Loving: Looking Back at the Landmark Case, Loving v. Virginia

Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1967).

Patricia Hruby Powell, Loving Vs. Virginia: A Documentary Novel of the Landmark Civil Rights Case (Chronicle Books, 2017).

Robert A. Pratt, Essay: Crossing the Color Line: A Historical Assessment and Personal Narrative of Loving v. Virginia, 41 Howard L.J. 229 (1997/1998).

Peter Wallenstein, Virginia Hasn’t Always Been For Lovers: Interracial Marriage Bans and the Case of Richard and Mildred Loving, 112 The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography 440(4) (2004).

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