25 June 2019

BOOK : Roy FLECHNER (Transl.), The Hibernensis: Book 1: A Study and Edition [Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Canon Law] (Washington D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 2019). ISBN 978-0813231938, $75.27


The Catholic University of America Press is publishing an English translation and commentary of the early medieval, Irish, tract Hibernensis.


The Hibernensis is the longest and most comprehensive canon-law text to have circulated in Carolingian Europe. Compiled in Ireland in the late seventh or early eight century, it exerted a strong and long-lasting influence on the development of European canon law. The present edition offers―for the first time―a complete text of the Hibernensis combining the two main branches of its manuscript transmission. This is accompanied by an English translation and a commentary that is both historical and philological. TheHibernensis is an invaluable source for those interested in church history, the history of canon law, social-economic history, as well as intellectual history, and the history of the book.

Widely recognized as the single most important source for the history of the church in early medieval Ireland, the Hibernensis is also our best index for knowing what books were available in Ireland at the time of its compilation: it consists of excerpted material from the Bible, Church Fathers and doctors, hagiography, church histories, chronicles, wisdom texts, and insular normative material unattested elsewhere. This in addition to the staple sources of canonical collections, comprising the acta of church councils and papal letters. Altogether there are forty-two cited authors and 135 cited texts. But unlike previous canonical collections, the contents of the Hibernensis are not simply derivative: they have been modified and systematically organised, offering an important insight into the manner in which contemporary clerical scholars attempted to define, interpret, and codify law for the use of a growing Christian society.


Dr Roy Flechner lectures at University College Dublin. He obtained his Masters degree and Doctorate from Oxford University, subsequently becoming a Postdoc at Trinity College Cambridge. His research explores contacts between Continental Europe and the islands of Britain and Ireland in the early medieval period. He won awards for his research on church history and historiography, but he is especially known for his work on conversion to Christianity, canon law, and St Patrick.

More information here

BOOK: Alla POZDNAKOVA, ed., Russian Revolutions of 1917: Scandinavian Perspectives (London: Wildy, Simmonds and Hill Publishing, 2019). ISBN 9780854902750, €65.40

Wildy, Simmonds and Hill Publishing has published an edited collection on Scandinavian perspectives to the Russian revolution of 1917.


Ten legal scholars explore facets of the 1917 Russian revolutions from the standpoint of Russian law (transition to a market economy), Comparative law (the impact of the 1917 Revolutions on the Soviet and post-Soviet legal experience; the development of comparative legal studies in Russia, and similarities and differences between Soviet and German Nazi law), and public international law (Russian fishing activities off Finnmark; Norwegian recognition policies vis-a-vis Russia; and the enduring importance of the Martens Clause in international humanitarian law). 

The volume is complemented by a substantial selection of documents on Scandinavian-Russian legal relations between 1917 and 1928. 


Alla Pozdnakova is Professor of Law at the University of Oslo in Norway 


Introduction (Alla Pozdnakova)
History of the 1917 Russian Revolution(s): An Overview (Asmund Egge)

Ten Years that Shook the World: How Russia Became a Market Economy - Or Did It? (Kaj Hober)
Real Property Privatization in Pre- and Post-Soviet Russia: Different or the Same? (Tina Soliman Hunter)

The Impact of the Russian Revolution: A Century of Revolutionary Law (William E. Butler)
Russian Comparative Law Before and After the 1917 Revolutions(Irina Fodchenko)
Law and the Russian Revolution: A Comparison with the Nazi Approach to Law (Hans Petter Graver)

Russian Fishing Activities Off the Coast of Finnmark: A Legal History (Kirsti Strom Bull)
Revolution, Requisition, and Recognition: Norwegian-Soviet Relations, 1917-1925 (Ola Mestad)
Importance of the Martens Clause for the Development of International Humanitarian Law (Gentian Zyberi)

Scandinavian Treaties with the RSFSR and the USSR; 1918-1928 (William E. Butler)
- Denmark
- Finland
- Iceland
- Norway
- Sweden


More information here

24 June 2019


Job Opportunities @ KU Leuven: 5 PhD Scholarships in Early Modern Book History, Theology and Legal History

In October 2019, the interdisciplinary research project “Innovation through Education: Pioneering Change in Law and Theology in Louvain’s Golden Age”will be launched. The project is led by a team of KU Leuven researchers consisting of LECTIO members Prof Wim Decock (Roman Law and Legal History, spokesperson), Prof Wouter Druwé (Roman Law and Legal History), Prof Randall Lesaffer (Roman Law and Legal History), Dr An Smets (KU Leuven Libraries) and Prof Violet Soen (Early Modern History), with the support of Prof Mark Depauw (Ancient History/Digital Humanities), Prof Wim François (History of Church and Theology) and Prof Jan Papy (Latin Literature). The team is now opening a call for 5 PhD positions within the project, funded by the Research Fund of the University of Leuven.

Project Description

The project studies the teachings of professors in law and theology at the University of Louvain and the Jesuit College of Louvain in the 16th and 17th centuries. By analyzing hitherto unexamined notetaken by students during courses of selected professors (Michael Baius, Jacobus Jansonius, Robertus Bellarminus, Leonardus Lessius, Andreas Vallensis, Petrus Peckius, Petrus Gudelinusand Antonius Perezius), the objective is to propose a grassroots perspective on intellectual change in law and theology in the early modern period. Handwritten material (e.g. student notebooks) will be confronted with printed sources (e.g. published treatises) to examine whether innovative ideas were tested in the classroom before they found their way (or not) into printing. Special attention will be paid to the interaction between new societal challenges and changes in the contents and methods of teaching law and theology. Moreover, the question will be raised what impetus, if any, Louvain professors received from (inter)national scholarly networks, especially from Douai and Salamanca. The project builds upon and expands the Magister Dixit-project ( 

Candidates are invited to apply for a full-time, four-year fellowship in one of the following subprojects: 

  • scholarship 1: “Towards a New Book Archeology of Teaching in Louvain” 
  • scholarship 2: “The Biblical Turn in Theology and New Teachings on Grace and Free Will”
  • scholarship 3: “Re-Inventing Canon Law: Teaching the Decretals After Trent” 
  • scholarship 4: “Re-Constituting the Habsburg Netherlands: Civil Lawyers and the Rise of Public Law” 
  • scholarship 5: “Transforming the Morality of the Market: The Jesuit Contribution to Law & Theology” 
The letter of motivation should indicate in which of the subprojects the candidate would prefer to be involved and how the candidate envisages the content of the PhD-project.The final decision about the sub-project and PhD-topic will be made in common agreement with the promotors. Depending on the sub-project and the promotors, it will be possible to pursue a PhD degree in either history,law or theology.


You hold a master’s degree with at least distinction in one of the following fields: history, law, canon law, languages and literature, philology, philosophy or theology and religious studies, or, ideally, in more than one of those fieldsStudents graduating in September 2019 are eligible to apply. 

good command of Latin is essential, as the primary source material is not available in translation. The working language of the project is English, but dissertations can also be written in Dutch, French or German. Paleographical skills are an asset. Training will be provided in the first year of the project. 

Candidates are team playereager to work in an interdisciplinary and international research environment. The PhD candidates will be expected to live and work in Leuven and contribute actively to the monthly seminars of the research group.


The net amount of the scholarship will be approx. 2000euro/month, depending on age, professional experience and family status; in additionthe fellowship provides for social and health benefits, office space and a bench fee for research expenses.

Subject to positive evaluation after the first year and the second year, the scholarship has a total duration of 48 months (1+1+2)KU Leuven offers a wide variety of courses for PhD candidates, a minimum of which must be followed as part of the compulsory doctoral training program, the specific content of which may vary from one faculty to another. 

The PhD candidates will benefit from a unique experience in an interdisciplinary environment with junior and senior experts in the fields of book history, digital humanities, history of law, history of church and theology, early modern history, religious history, and philology.  

All senior team members are involved in LECTIO, KU Leuven’s Centre for the Study of the Transmission of Text and Ideas in Antiquity, the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. PhD candidates will be encouraged to participate in LECTIOs activities

How to apply

Applications should include a detailed CV, a writing sample and at least one letter of recommendationThe candidate is expected to submit a letter of motivation in which she/he expresses her/his preference for one or more of the sub-topics and how she/he envisages the PhD-project. 

Candidates are asked to submit their application to wim.decock@kuleuven.beAs from July, candidates will be requested to follow the online application tool available at 

The deadline for applications is 15 August 2019. After a preliminary screeningselected candidates will be invited for an interview, involving accomplishment of a project-related task,in Leuven at the end of August/beginning of SeptemberStarting date of the scholarship is 1 October 2019 

(Source: Standen en Landen

SEMINAR: Deutsch-Französisches Forschungsseminar 2019: „Futures Past of European Constitutional Imaginaries in the 1950s and 1990s: A Dialogical Exploration“ - Dialogvortrag von Alexandra Kemmerer und Prof. Dr. Jan Komárek (Berlin, 25 June 2019)

The Humboldt University in Berlin is hosting the Deutsch-Französisches Forschungsseminar 2019 this week, dealing with European legal integration.

From its very beginnings, European legal integration has been driven and shaped by transnational constitutional imagination. European constitutional imaginaries are manifold – and they encompass utopian as well as ideological components. "The Magic of the C-Word“ (Eric Stein) was at the core of a "Transformation of Europe" (Joseph H.H. Weiler) that transformed, in turn, the conceptual framework of Western-liberal constitutionalism. In our conversation, we shall revisit futures past of European constitutional imaginaries at two crucial constitutional moments. In the 1950s, in the immediate aftermath of the entry into force of the treaty of Rome, the transnational encounter of the protagonists of legal and political integration was based on and shaped by a heterodox variety of constitutional trajectories, inter alia by French and German public law traditions. As our second crucial moment in time to be discussed in our conversation, the fall of communism in 1989 was transformative not only for the New Europe, but also for the Old Europe. The image of the Union as a guarantee of democracy and freedom from foreign domination brought about changes in the "deep structure" of the Union as a whole. 1989, the "year of miracles", made a particular version of constitutional imaginary of the EU particularly dominant - an imaginary that borrows heavily from liberal, US-inspired constitutionalism which resonated globally at the time, and came to be perceived both as utopia and ideology. A profound disenchantment with European liberal constitutionalism, a disillusionment that spread from the New to the Old Europe was to follow. If we want to understand current legal and political dynamics within the EU, it is imperative to understand the futures past of European constitutional imaginaries, and the views held by European constitutionalists – both from a conceptual and an empirical angle.

Alexandra Kemmerer, Juristin und Publizistin, ist Wissenschaftliche Referentin und Koordinatorin am Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht, dessen Berliner Büro sie leitet. Ihre Forschungsinteressen liegen im Völkerrecht, im Europäischen öffentlichen Recht, der Rechtsvergleichung, den Grundlagen und Kontexten des Rechts und der Medientheorie und kommunikativen Praxis des Rechts und der Rechtswissenschaft. Ihr besonderes Augenmerk gilt derzeit den Verflechtungen der Geschichte des Rechts der Europäischen Integration und des Völkerrechts im Kontext des Kalten Krieges und Verbindungen zwischen Biographie, Dogmatik und Theorie.

Jan Komárek ist Professor an der University of Copenhagen. Zuvor lehrte er EU-Recht an der London School of Economics und diente als Fachberater im auswärtigen Ministerium der Tschechischen Republik und beim Vorsitzenden des tschechischen Verfassungsgerichts. Seine Forschungsschwerpunkte liegen im Bereich des Rechts der europäischen Integration, des europäischen Verfassungsrechts und der Verfassungstheorie. Seit 2019 ist er Projektleiter des ERC Starting Grant "IMAGINE: European Constitutional Imaginaries: Utopias, Ideologies and the Other", welches die verfassungsrechtliche Imaginäre der europäischen Integration sowohl auf nationaler als auch auf Unionsebene untersucht.

Der Vortrag findet im Rahmen des Deutsch-Französischen Forschungsseminars "Neueste Entwicklungen im Öffentlichen Recht und in der Rechtstheorie in Frankreich und Deutschland" statt, das von der Humboldt European Law School in Kooperation mit dem Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht sowie dem Centre Marc Bloch Berlin organisiert wird. Das detaillierte Programm dieser Veranstaltungsreihe finden Sie hier: 
Zum Programm des Deutsch-Französischen Forschungsseminars im Sommersemester 2019.

Die Teilnahme erfolgt ohne Anmeldung. Der Vortrag findet auf Englisch statt, die Diskussion auf Englisch, Deutsch und Französisch. Die Wahl der Sprache ist dabei jeder Teilnehmerin und jedem Teilnehmer freigestellt;es werden lediglich passive Kenntnisse der anderen Sprachen vorausgesetzt. Hilfsweise kann punktuell gedolmetscht werden.

Über Ihre Teilnahme würden wir uns sehr freuen!

All info to be found here

JOURNAL: Clio@Themis Numéro 19

(Source: Clio@themis)

Clio@Themis has published its June 2019 issue.


Droit et anthropologie (2).

Archéologie d’un savoir à la Renaissance

I. Les juristes humanistes et les savoirs anthropologiques
Rachel Darmon
Géraldine Cazals
Gaëlle Demelemestre

II. Savoirs anthropologiques et méthodologie juridique
Grégoire Holtz
Andrea Daher
Céline Roynier

III. Caractérologique, sang, noblesse

Gilduin Davy
Jean-Frédéric Schaub
Marie-Clarté Lagrée


Carlos Petit

All articles can be found here.

21 June 2019

WORKSHOP: Sovereignty and Property in (Post)Colonial Contexts (15 July 2019, Goethe University Frankfurt)

We learned of a workshop on Sovereignty and Property in (Post)Colonial Contexts at the Goethe Universität next month.

John Locke, Making Property Rights and International Law Mónica García-Salmones Rovira (Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights, University of Helsinki)

Methodological issues relating to the history of European colonial expansion in international law: insights from Alfred Schutz’s phenomenological sociology Mamadou Hébié (Leiden University, International Court of Justice)

Rights of Conquest, Discovery and Occupation, and the Freedom of the Seas: the Colonial Invention of International Law and the Natural Resource Injustice Petra Gümplová (Max Weber Kolleg, University of Erfurt)

Cultural Artefacts – Returning Colonial Objects Jochen von Bernstorff (University of Tübingen)
The Entanglement of Sovereignty and Property in International Law. From German Southwest Africa to the Great Land Grab? Matthias Goldmann (Goethe University Frankfurt & MPIL Heidelberg)

Comments by: Kanad Bagchi   & Alexandra Kemmerer (MPIL Heidelberg), Isabel Feichtner (U Würzburg), Stefan Kadelbach (Goethe U Frankfurt), Manuel Bastias Saavedra (MPIeR Frankfurt)

Venue: Normative Orders EG.01, Campus Westend, Goethe University

Convener: Matthias Goldmann, Goethe University Frankfurt

Registration required:

The poster for the event can be found here

20 June 2019

BOOK: Bradley D. HAYS, States in American Constitutionalism : Interpretation, Authority, and Politics (London: Routledge, 2019). ISBN 9780415832397, £105.00

(Source: Routledge)

Routledge has published a new book on the role of states in US constitutionalism on the basis of historical case studies.


States in American Constitutionalism: Interpretation, Authority, and Politics examines the often overlooked role that states have played in the development and maintenance of American constitutionalism by examining the purpose and effect of state resolutions on national constitutional meaning. From colonial practices through contemporary politics, subnational governments have made claims about what national constitutional provisions and principles ought to mean, fashioned political coalitions to back them, and asserted their authority to provoke constitutional settlement. Yet, this practice has been far from static. Political actors have altered the practice in response to their interpretive objectives and the political landscape of the day. States in American Constitutionalism explains both the development of the practice and the way each innovation to the practice affected subsequent iterations.

Hays presents a series of case studies that explore the origins of the practice in colonial constitutionalism, its function in the early Republic, subsequent developments in antebellum and twentieth century politics, and contemporary practice in the first two decades of the twenty-first century.

States in American Constitutionalism will be of great interest to students and academics interested in constitutional law and politics, political and constitutional development, and federalism.


Bradley D. Hays is an associate professor of political science at Union College. He received his Ph.D. in government and politics from the University of Maryland, has held faculty positions at the Catholic University of America and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and been a junior fellow at the Clough Center for the Study of Constitutional Democracy at Boston College. He writes on constitutional politics and political development. He is also "scholar in residence" at WAMC Northeast Public Radio.


1. Introduction: The (Nonlegal) Role of States in Constitutional Maintenance
2. Alerting the People: The Origins and Early Practice of State Maintenance
3. Interposing the Protective Shield and Exerting State Authority: The Failures of State Maintenance
4. The Authority to Reject Interpretation: State Maintenance in the Twentieth Century
5. Reinvigoration: The Return of Madisonian Maintenance, Nullification, and the Affirmation of Judicial Authority
6. Conclusion: On Development and Constitutionalism

More information here

19 June 2019

BOOK: Olaf KROON, Die Verfassung von Cádiz (1812) Spaniens Sprung in die Moderne, gespiegelt an der Verfassung Kurhessens von 1831 (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2019). ISBN 978-3-11-063054-1, $91.99

(Source: De Gruyter)

De Gruyter has published a new book on the Spanish constitution of 1812 and the Kurhessen Constitution of 1831.


The 1812 Spanish Constitution represents the foundation stone of Spain’s modern constitutional history and constitutes a crucial chapter in the Europe-wide conflict between absolutism and constitutionalism. Like the Kurhessen Constitution of 1831, it was considered in its day Europe’s most liberal, progressive, and radical constitution. This study takes a comparative approach to both constitutions.


Olaf Kroon, Madrid, Spain.

More information here

BOOK: Virginia AMOROSI and Valerio MASSIMO MINALE, eds., History of law and other humanities : views of the legal world across the time (Madrid, 2019). ISBN 978-84-1324-239-2

The Universidad Carlos III de Madrid has published an edited collection (open source) on the links forged through the ages between the realm of law and the expressions of the humanistic culture (based on the XXIII Forum of the Association of Young Legal Historians, held in Naples in 2017).


The collection of thirty-five essays presented here examines the links forged through the ages between the realm of law and the expressions of the humanistic culture. The essays are organized into sections of ten chapters based around ten different themes. Two main perspectives emerged: in some articles the topic relates to the conventional approach of ‘law and/in humanities’ (iconography, literature, architecture, cinema, music), other articles are about more traditional connections between fields of knowledge (in particular, philosophy, political experiences, didactics). The variety of authorial nationalities gives the collection a multicultural character and the historiographical interpretation is the element that unites the collection, with a breadth of the chronological period goes from antiquity to the contemporary age. This project is the result of discussions that took place during the XXIII Forum of the Association of Young Legal Historians held in Naples in the spring of 2017.


Table of contents: New Perspectives on ‘Law and Humanities’ together with a ‘Musical’ Approach to the History of Legal Problems: Looking Through the Mirror of Opera / Valerio Massimo Minale (pp. 15-24). -- (History of) Law and Other Humanities: When, Why, How / Luigi Lacchè (pp. 25-43). -- A Legal Study of Medieval Cities from the 11th to 14th Century: The Example of Sigillography in France / Romain Broussais (pp. 47-68). -- Typographic Art and Roman Law: A Renaissance Image of the Lex XII tabularum / Fabiana Tuccillo (pp. 69-80). -- «Oh, the Law is Ruination, and Attorneys are Vexation ...» Law and Lawyers in the Opera and Operetta / Krzysztof Bokwa (pp. 83-95). -- The Boyars, the Poet and the Composer. The Portrayal of the Boyar Duma in Puškin’s and Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov / Nina Kršljanin, Filip Milinković (pp. 97-122). -- The Dreyfus Affair in Music. L’Hymne à la Justice of Albéric Magnard / Mario Riberi (pp. 123-137). -- Scientia iuris and architectura. A Focus on Buildings for Shows / Paola Pasquino (pp. 141-156). -- Optimus princeps and the Triumphal Arch in Benevento / Alessio Guasco (pp. 157-166). -- Law, Justice and Architecture in Modern Venice: The Rectors’ Palaces and the Government of the Mainland / Claudia Passarella (pp. 167-179). -- Milan’s Courthouse: A View of the Roman Legal Culture across Fascist Ideology / Virginia Maria De Capitani (pp. 181-192). -- Cicero’s Thinking on the Essence of Legal Reasoning / Valentina Cvetković- Dordević (pp. 195-204). -- Interpreting the Antiheretical Edict of Wieluń. Between Literal Meaning and Philosophical Approach / Paweł Dziwiński (pp. 205-220). -- Law and Humanities in Giambattista Vico’s Thought. A First Understanding / Alessia Farano (pp. 221-234). -- The National Codification of Civil Law in Poland at the Beginning of the 19th Century. Sources and Inspirations / Piotr Pomianowski (pp. 235- 245). -- The Frogs by Aristophanes: When Comedy Meets Legal History / Athanasios Delios (pp. 249-263). -- Medicus between Perception and Reality as Portrayed in Some Non-legal Sources / Nikol Žiha (pp. 265-285). -- Military Law, Justice and Discipline in the Early Modern Owlglass Literature from Central Europe / Przemysław Gawron, Jan Jerzy Sowa (pp. 287-298). -- Pamphlet Literature Reflecting Parliamentary Opposition at the Time of the French Fronde: The Example of the Mazarinades (1648- 1649) / Juan Manuel Hernández Vélez (pp. 299-313). -- The Methods for the Legitimation of the Succession of James II in Aphra Behn’s Poem for Coronation / Balázs Rigó (pp. 315-327). -- Balzac and the Criticisms of the French Civil Code in the First Half of the 19th Century / Elisabeth Bruyère (pp. 329-336). -- The Medieval Legal Practice of Exculpatory Oath and Trial by Fire in the Legend of Queen Isolde / Alicja Bańczyk (pp. 339-347). -- Between Law and Literature. Violations of the Legal Rule in the Decameron / Daniela Buccomino (pp. 349-376). -- Institutions and Criminal Procedure of the Magdeburg Law in Poland according to Judas’Sack by Sebastian Fabian Klonowic / Lukasz Golaszewski (pp. 377- 390). -- A Letter from Detention: The Edition of Letters of Livonian Humanistic Lawyer David Hilchen as an Interdisciplinary Challenge / Hesi Siimets-Gross (391-405). -- The Case of Eszter Solymosi from Tiszaeszlár: The Notorious Blood Libel Trial through the Eyes of Gyula Krúdy / Imre Képessy (pp. 407-418). -- Reading a Travel Journal. The Melancholia of Gina Lombroso in Latin America / Francesco Rotondo (pp. 419-430). -- History of Rome, History of Roman Law and Cinema / Carlo De Cristofaro (pp. 433-442). -- You Can Only Write Once – Rights to Autorship, Inspiration and Transformation in the Chosen Judgements of U.S. Courts Involving the Copyrights on the James Bond Character / Wojciech Bańczyk (pp. 443-453). -- Advertising and the Rule of Law. Law in Representations of Insurance in Late 19th Century Netherlands / Christina Reimann (pp. 457-470). -- Newspapers and the Making of Popular Legal Culture. The Example of the Death Penalty in France (20th century) / Nicolas Picard (pp. 471-482). -- Secularism versus Religion-based Legal Pluralism: The Diverse Views on These Concepts in Modern Muslim Discourse and Culture between 19th and 21st Century / Rafal Kaczmarczyk (pp. 483-493). -- Legal Organization of Medieval Serbian Mining Communities / Andreja Katančević (pp. 497-512). -- The Structure of the Government and the Press / Gábor Bathó (pp. 513-525). -- The Influence of Political Factors on the Adjudicating on Petty Offences in the People’s Republic of Poland / Marcin Lysko (pp. 527-535). -- History and Legal History in Latin America. Reflections on a Necessary Dialogue with Special Attention to Cuban Experience / Fabricio Mulet Martínez (pp. 539-549). -- Teaching a Historical Context in a First-Year ‘Introduction to Private Law’ Course. The Effects of Teaching Approaches and a Learning Environment on Students’ Learning / Emanuel G. D. van Dongen, Irma Meijerman (pp. 551-569).

More info here

18 June 2019

BOOK: Dean A. Strang, Keep the Wretches in Order: America’s Biggest Mass Trial, the Rise of the Justice Department, and the Fall of the IWW (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2019). ISBN 978-0299323301, $33.66


The University of Wisconsin Press has published a new book on America’s biggest mass trial at the end of World War I (involving the Industrial Workers of the World).


Before World War I, the government reaction to labor dissent had been local, ad hoc, and quasi-military. Sheriffs, mayors, or governors would deputize strikebreakers or call out the state militia, usually at the bidding of employers. When the United States entered the conflict in 1917, government and industry feared that strikes would endanger war production; a more coordinated, national strategy would be necessary. To prevent stoppages, the Department of Justice embarked on a sweeping new effort—replacing gunmen with lawyers. The department systematically targeted the nation’s most radical and innovative union, the Industrial Workers of the World, also known as the Wobblies, resulting in the largest mass trial in U.S. history.

In the first legal history of this federal trial, Dean Strang shows how the case laid the groundwork for a fundamentally different strategy to stifle radical threats, and had a major role in shaping the modern Justice Department. As the trial unfolded, it became an exercise of raw force, raising serious questions about its legitimacy and revealing the fragility of a criminal justice system under great external pressure.


Dean A. Strang is a criminal defense lawyer in Madison, Wisconsin, and an adjunct professor at the University of Virginia School of Law. He is the author of Worse than the Devil: Anarchists, Clarence Darrow, and Justice in a Time of Terror.

More information here

BOOK: Paul GARFINKEL, Criminal Law in Liberal and Fascist Italy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019). ISBN 9781107520141, $ 32.99

Cambridge University Press just published the paperback of a book on criminal law in liberal and fascist Italy, which we had not yet reported on when the hardback was released in 2017.


By extending the chronological parameters of existing scholarship, and by focusing on legal experts' overriding and enduring concern with 'dangerous' forms of common crime, this study offers a major reinterpretation of criminal-law reform and legal culture in Italy from the Liberal (1861–1922) to the Fascist era (1922–43). Garfinkel argues that scholars have long overstated the influence of positivist criminology on Italian legal culture and that the kingdom's penal-reform movement was driven not by the radical criminological theories of Cesare Lombroso, but instead by a growing body of statistics and legal researches that related rising rates of crime to the instability of the Italian state. Drawing on a vast array of archival, legal and official sources, the author explains the sustained and wide-ranging interest in penal-law reform that defined this era in Italian legal history while analyzing the philosophical underpinnings of that reform and its relationship to contemporary penal-reform movements abroad.


Paul GarfinkelSimon Fraser University, British Columbia
Paul Garfinkel is an Associate Professor of History at Simon Fraser University, British Columbia.


1. Body count
2. Civilized violence
3. Force of habit
4. Tomorrow's criminals
5. Grapes and wrath
6. Coup, casualty and catalyst: the Ferri Code, 1919–25
7. Fascism's legal Risorgimento, 1925–31

More information here

17 June 2019

CALL FOR PAPERS: Law and Governance of a Global City: 17th-century Amsterdam (Amsterdam, June 2020) (DEADLINE: 1 July 2019)

(Source: Wikipedia)

We learned of a call for papers for a symposium on law and governance in 17th century Amsterdam. Here the call:

Four hundred years ago, like today, globalisation and urbanisation impacted the world’s cities. In seventeenth-century Amsterdam, the afflux of trade and migrants prompted rapid economic and demographic growth, resulting in dynamic multicultural urban life and leading to complex questions of governance. The foreign merchants and newcomers were governed by the city administrators, who pursued policies of commercial and religious freedom. The governance of the city was both local and global. The Amsterdam Chamber of the Dutch East India Company was the most affluent and had a large say in the Company’s policies.

The communities of foreign merchants and often well-skilled newcomers were very well connected to their home regions and cities contributing to the constitution of Amsterdam at the center of global trade networks. It was the city where the first ‘modern’ stock exchange was established and the availability of capital pushed the Amsterdam and Dutch economy into a new phase of capitalism. The Dutch hegemony in the global slave trade soon made a significant contribution to the wealth of the city. The Burgerzaal of the seventeenth-century City Hall visualised the city’s bold ambition: Amsterdam as the center of a global (commercial)empire – the center of the universe.  From 1500 to 1700 Amsterdam grew from 12.000 to 200.000 inhabitants, mostly due to massive immigration. The city’s relatively tolerant intellectual climate contributed to an influx of – sometimes very wealthy – religious refugees as well as progressive/radical thinkers.Economics and politics were highly intertwinned. Economic interests and ambitions went hand in hand with political interests and ambitions. The public and the private were very much intertwined. How to govern such a rapidly expanding and very diverse city well? How did this impact existing local government practices? How to approach global trade and commercial activities stemming from and coming through Amsterdam? How did law and government support and contribute to the Amsterdam economy, and vice versa? How did the city governors deal with the risks, tensions and complications of a city and its people catapulted into a global existence? How did the city government approach Amsterdam’s immigration and diversity? What were the legal and institutional responses to the local and global challenges that came with globalisation and urbanisation in this 17th century city? The revolt against Spain ended ultimately in a quest for independence. But how to organise and govern a leading city of this emerging state? Where should sovereignty be vested? How did Amsterdam contribute to the position of The Dutch Republic on the international stage? The Dutch Republic developed into a (con)federalised state with powerful towns and Holland as the most urbanised province. Amsterdam – the rising metropolis of a rapidly expanding colonial Empire - was a city in need of new ideas, policies and institutions to govern at home and abroad. The global role of cities and city-based companies contributed to a normative discourse, which drew on different bodies of law, including (Dutch-)Roman law and the emerging law of nations and nature, ius gentium et naturale.   Slavery, trade, war, as well as discussions of religious toleration, justice and good government triggered legal questions and debates.

Against this background, this Call for Papers invites submissions engaging with the aforementioned questions and issues related to three themes:  I.  City of commerce and tradeII. City of immigration and diversity III. City of Innovative governance and law

Call for papers:

We call on scholars from legal history, history and theory of international law, urban history, as well as scholars from related disciplines, such as political philosophy, economic history, social history, history of ideas and intellectual history, history of slavery and empire, and migration studies, to send an abstract of circa 500-700 words setting out the prospective paper they would like to submit for inclusion in the symposium dealing with one of thethemes identified within the overarching topic of law and governance of Amsterdam in the 17th-century. 

Abstracts July1st, 2019
On the basis of the Abstracts we will select authors by September 1st, 2019.
Deadline First Draft March1st, 2020 Selected Authors’deadline for first draft.
Symposium June2020

In June 2020, a symposium will take place in Amsterdam to bring together the selected authors.
Co-donors / co-organisers: ERC-Project led by Dave De ruysscher (Tilburg University), ‘Coherence in Law Through Legal Scholarship’ ( ).Gieskes Strijbis-project led by Janne Nijman (Asser Institute/University of Amsterdam), ‘The Global City: Trust, Challenges, and the Role of Law’ ( ). VIDI-Project led by Bram van Hofstraeten (Maastricht University), ‘What's in a Name? Challenging Early Modern Ideal-Types of Private Partnerships in the Low Countries (17th-18th Centuries)’ ( )

All info can be found here