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

BOOK: Beat A. KÜMIN, Imperial Villages : Cultures of Political Freedom in the German Lands, c. 1300-1800 [Studies in Central European Histories] (Leiden-New York: Brill, 2019). ISBN 978-90-04-39660-9, €121.00

(Source: Brill)

Brill has published a new book on rural self-government in the Holy Roman Empire between 1300-1800.


Hundreds of rural communities tasted political freedom in the Holy Roman Empire. For shorter or longer periods, villagers managed local affairs without subjection to territorial overlords. In this first book-length study, Beat Kümin focuses on the five case studies of Gochsheim and Sennfeld (in present-day Bavaria), Sulzbach and Soden (Hesse) and Gersau (Switzerland). Adopting a comparative perspective across the late medieval and early modern periods, the analysis of multiple sources reveals distinct extents of rural self-government, the forging of communalized confessions and an enduring attachment to the empire. Negotiating inner tensions as well as mounting centralization pressures, Reichsdörferprovide privileged insights into rural micro-political cultures while their stories resonate with resurgent desires for greater local autonomy in Europe today.


Beat Kümin obtained his Ph.D. at Cambridge (1993) and a higher doctorate at Bern (2005). He is Professor of Early Modern European History at the University of Warwick, U.K. His publications include Drinking Matters(2007) and The European World (3rd edn, 2018).


Notes on the Text
List of Figures and Acknowledgements

Part 1: Approaches
Polities without a Prince: an Introduction

Origins, Evolutions and Settings 

Part 2: Regimes
Domestic Affairs: Co-Operation and Conflict

External Relations: Protectors and Predators

Religious Life – Heaven and Earth 

Part 3: Perspectives
Representations and Perceptions

Appendix 1: Communities Possessing, Claiming or Attributed Imperial Village Status (Pre-1803)
Appendix 2: Senior Officials and Clergymen in Five Imperial Villages c. 1300–1800

More info here

14 June 2019

SPECIAL ISSUE: Gerhard AMMERER, Gerhard FRITZ & Jaromir RAUCHEN (Hrsg.), Sexualität vor Gericht. Deviante geschlechtliche Praktiken und deren Verfolgung vom 14. bis zum 19. Jahrhundert [Beiträge zur Rechtsgeschichte Österreichs IX (2019), nr. 1], € 59

Tablte of contents:

Karl HÄRTER, Frankfurt am Main 
„Die unwiderstehliche Allmacht des Geschlechtstriebes“ Policeygesetzgebung und sexuelle Devianz zwischen  
Regulierung, Kriminalisierung und Liberalisierung .

Wolfgang WÜST, Erlangen–Nürnberg 
Sex und „gute Policey“ . Frühmoderne Ordnungen für Huren, Hebammen, Ehebrecher und Alkoholiker in Süddeutschland .
Miroslav LYSÝ, Pressburg 
Christian Morals and the Ideal of Chastity as reflected in Medieval Hungarian Sources

Alica KŘÁPKOVÁ, Brünn
Sexual Offences in Czech Town Books from the Early Modern Period

Blanka SZEGHYOVÁ, Pressburg
Sex Crimes in Hungarian Towns in the Age of the Protestant Reformation

Gerhard FRITZ, Schwäbisch Gmünd 
„Hini zum teufel mit solchen unreinen leuten!“  Was ist erlaubt und was ist verboten?  
Grenzen sexueller Devianz in der Chronik der Grafen von Zimmern (um 1550) .

Alfred Stefan WEIß, Salzburg
Verbotene Sexualität in frühneuzeitlichen Hospitälern

Scheidungsgrund Sexualität. Die Anschuldigungen der Sodomie und der ehelichen sexuellen Gewalt in frühneuzeitlichen Eheverfahren

Sašo JERŠE, Laibach 
In vino crimen sodomitiae 
Der zweite Gerichtsprozess wegen Sodomie vor dem  Landesgericht Gutenhaag in der Untersteiermark im Jahr 1749 Eine mikrohistorische Studie

Petr KREUZ, Prag 
Zur schweren Sexualdelinquenz vor den böhmischen Stadtgerichten im 16. und beginnenden 17. Jahrhundert

Sexual offences in Arnest’s provincial statutes from 1349

Gerhard AMMERER, Salzburg 
Das Delikt der Fornikation und dessen Bestrafung.Das Habsburgerreich und Salzburg in der Frühen Neuzeit

„Weil es schon der dritte Fall gewesen sey“ 
Das Delikt des Kindsmordes und seine Motive in Österreich von der Frühen Neuzeit bis zur Mitte des 19. Jahrhunderts

Robert JÜTTE, Stuttgart 
„Bey solcher Gelegenheit treiben sie offt selber mit Christinnen Unzucht“. Verbotene Sexualkontakte zwischen Juden und Christen in der Frühen Neuzeit

Claudia ULBRICH, Berlin
Sexuelle Devianz im Milieu der Wanderschauspieler

The issue can be ordered for € 59. 

(source: ÖAW)

BOOK: Elizabeth MANCKE et al., eds., Violence, Order, and Unrest: A History of British North America, 1749–1876 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019). ISBN 9781487523701, $41.25

Toronto University Press has published an edited collection on the history of British North America between 1749-1876, and which includes several legal-historical contributions.


This edited collection offers a broad reinterpretation of the origins of Canada. Drawing on cutting-edge research in a number of fields, Violence, Order, and Unrest explores the development of British North America from the mid-eighteenth century through the aftermath of Confederation. The chapters cover an ambitious range of topics, from Indigenous culture to municipal politics, public executions to runaway slave advertisements. Cumulatively, this book examines the diversity of Indigenous and colonial experiences across northern North America and provides fresh perspectives on the crucial roles of violence and unrest in attempts to establish British authority in Indigenous territories. In the aftermath of Canada 150, Violence, Order, and Unrestoffers a timely contribution to current debates over the nature of Canadian culture and history, demonstrating that we cannot understand Canada today without considering its origins as a colonial project.


Elizabeth Mancke is Canada Research Chair in Atlantic Canada Studies in the Department of History at the University of New Brunswick.

Jerry Bannister teaches History and Canadian Studies at Dalhousie University.

Denis McKim teaches in the History Department at Douglas College.

Scott W. See is Libra Professor Emeritus and former chair of the University of Maine’s History Department.


Notes on Contributors
Elizabeth Mancke, Jerry Bannister, Denis McKim, and Scott W. See
Section I: Loyalty, Liberty, and Visions of Order
1. Aspirations and Limitations: "Peace, Order, and Good Government" and the Language of Violence and Disorder in British North America
    Scott W. See
2. Loyalty, Order, and Quebec’s Catholic Hierarchy, 1763–1867
    D.C. Bélanger
3. Anxious Anglicans, Complicated Catholics, and Disruptive Dissenters: Christianity and the Search for Social Order in the Age of Revolution
    Denis McKim
4. Liberty, Loyalty, and Sentiment in Canada’s Founding Debates, 1864–1873
    Jerry Bannister
Section II: From Tory Imperialism to Liberal Settler Colonialism
5. Revolution Expected: The Invasion of Quebec and American Independence
    Jeffers Lennox
6. Empire, Settler Colonialism, and the Role of Violence in Indigenous Dispossession in British North America, 1749–1830
    John G. Reid
7. Space, Race, and Violence: The Beginnings of Civilization in Canada
    E.A. Heaman
8. Worthy and Industrious or a Burden? Managing Migration in Upper Canada, 1815–1845
Section III: Resisting Dispossession
9. Searching for Order in a Settlers’ World: Wendat and Mississauga Schooling, Politics and Networks at the Turn of the Nineteenth Century
    Thomas Peace
10. Runaway Advertisements and Social Disorder in the Maritimes: A Preliminary Study
      Harvey Amani Whitfield
11. The Mobile Village: Metis Women, Bison Brigades, and Social Order on the Nineteenth-Century Plains
      Émilie Pigeon and Carolyn Podruchny
12. "We are men not Buffalos": Louis Riel and the Gendering of the Red River Public Sphere
      M. Max Hamon
Section IV: Legitimating and Contesting the Public Sphere
13. Discontents and Dissidents: Unrest amongst Loyalist Freemasons in the 1780s and 90s
      Bonnie Huskins
14. Of Bludgeons and Ballots: Political Violence, Municipal Enfranchisement, and Local Governance in Mid-Nineteenth- Century Montreal
      Colin Grittner
15. Boys, Young Men, and Disorder in a Mid-Victorian City
      Ian Radforth
16. "To muse within these peaceful portals": Urban Space, Public Order, and the Makings of Montreal’s Viger Square, 1818–1870
      Dan Horner
Section V: Tools of Social Order: The Law and the Press
17. The Spectacle of State Violence: Executions in Quebec, 1759–1872
      Donald Fyson
18. Making a Patriot Order: Violence, Respectability, and the Patriot Press in Exile, 1838–1847
      Stephen R.I. Smith
19. The Ambivalence of Order: Jurisdiction in the Disputed Northeast
      Bradley Miller
20. For the Better Administration of the Town’s Affairs: Civic Engagement, Local Governance, and Grassroots Activism in Canada West/Ontario, 1849–1870
      Darren Ferry
21. The Role of Newspapers in Halifax during the Confederate and the Repeal Movements, 1865–69
      Mathias Rodorff
Elizabeth Mancke, Jerry Bannister, Denis McKim, and Scott W. See

More information here

13 June 2019

CONFERENCE: 22nd Belgian & Dutch Colloquium of History of Law (Liège, 14 & 15 JUN 2019)

22nd Belgian & Dutch Colloquium of History of Law
Liège 14 & 15 June 2019

- Program -

Friday 14 June 2019
Salle des Professeurs, Place du XX Août, 7-9

08.30-09.00 Welcoming word by ULiège First Vice-Rector Prof. Jean Winand

Panel 1 (Economic Law)

  • Dirk Heirbaut (UGent): De vroegste verzekeringen te land in de Zuidelijke Nederlanden: een onbekende
  • Cornelis Marinus in ‘t Veld (VUB): The Conservation in Lyon and the long tradition of coutume and usage
  • Discussion

Panel 2 (Marriage Law)

  • Chanelle Delameillieure (KULeuven): Conflicten rond consent. Schakingszaken voor de officialiteiten van de vijftiende-eeuwse Zuidelijke Nederlanden
  • Anna Boeles Rowland (KULeuven): Hearts and Minds : Communicating Consent in Late Medieval London
  • Discussion

11.00-11.30 Coffee break

Panel 3 (International Law)

  • Wouter De Rycke (VUB): Legal discourse in the transnational peace movement (1840-1850)
  • Vincent Genin (KULeuven and EPHE): Emile de Laveleye et la théorie de la supériorité protestante (1875). Quand un économiste s'approprie la pensée d'Edgard Quinet et de Charles de Villers
  • Discussion

12.30-13.30 Lunch

13.30-14.50 Visits of CEDOPAL and Fonds remarquables

Panel 4 (Insolvency 1)

  • Dave De ruysscher (Tilburg University/VUB): Commercial Law in Between Doctrine and practice: the Case of Insolvency and Security Interests in Early-Modern Continental Europe
  • Marta Lupi (Tilburg University): Bankruptcy in 16th Century Lyon
  • Discussion

  • Remko Mooi (Tilburg University): The Legal Position of Foreign Creditors in Frankfurt (17th-18th Centuries)
  • Maurits den Hollander (Tilburg University): Stay of Execution. Insolvency Procedures and the Desolate Boedelskamer in 17th century Amsterdam
  • Discussion

16.30-17.00 Coffee break

Panel 5 (Public Law)

  • Andy Jousten/Quentin Pironnet (ULiège): Citizenship and Electoral Law in Times of Revolutions (19th and 20th centuries)
  • Christophe Maes (KULeuven): Soevereiniteit, representatie en participatie in België (1830-31)
  • Discussion

18.00 Reception and presentation of the Centre Liégeois d’Histoire du Droit

20.00-22.00 Diner (Le Bistr’Ô, Place Xavier Neujean, 29)

Saturday 15 June 2019
Salle des Professeurs, Place du XX Août, 7-9

Panel 6 (Law & Morality)

  • Christoph Haar (Universität Halle-Wittenberg): Rodrigo Arriaga (1592-1667) on the nature of legislative authority
  • Janwillem (Pim) Oosterhuis (Universiteit Maastricht): Rooms Hollands Strafrecht en Calvinisme. Over de invloed van een Calvinistische Moraal in De criminibus (1644) op strafrechtspleging in de vroegmoderne Nederlandse Republiek
  • Discussion

  • Paolo Astorri (KULeuven): Private Property in Early Modern Lutheranism
  • Joost Possemiers (KULeuven): Contractenrecht, moraal en zakendoen. Een inleiding op Conrad Summenharts monumentale Opus de contractibus (1500): een poging om het woekerverbod te omzeilen?
  • Discussion

10.10-10.40 Coffee Break

Panel 7 (Insolvency 2)

  • Ilya A. Kotlyar (Tilburg University): The Digest Variations and BANKRUPTCY in the Ius Commune and Roman Dutch Law
  • Pieter De Reu (VUB): Modifying Bankruptcy and Insolvency Proceedings for Changing Corporate Structures. The Relationship Between Pre-Insolvency Practices and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMES) in Belgium, 1850-1910
  • Discussion
Panel 8 (Applied Legal History)

  • Bram de Ridder (KULeuven): History, Law and Trust in Applied History
  • Johan Van de Voorde (UAntwerpen): La restriction de l’adage en fait de meuble, possession vaut titre (art. 2279 C.Nap.) aux biens meubles corporels 
  • Edouard Delrée (ULB): Vers une information préparatoire contradictoire ? La Belgique et la récurrence du débat sur l'extension du caractère accusatoire de la procédure pénale entre 1830 et 1970
  • Discussion

13.00-14.00 Lunch

14.00-15.00 Panel 9 (Printing and the Law)

  • Nicolas Simon (UCLouvain): Impression et diffusion de la législation dans les Pays-Bas habsbourgeois (1598-1665)
  • Annemieke Romein (UGent/Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam/ Royal Library Den Haag): Making ‘More’ Sense out of Books of Ordinances! Introducing the ‘Entangled Histories’-Project
  • Discussion

15.00-15.30 Coffee Break

Panel 10 (Teaching of Law and Circulation of Lawyers)

  • Raphaël Cahen (VUB): Migrations de juristes et circulation des savoirs juridiques (1815-1914)
  • Maxime Jottrand (ULB): L’évolution de l’enseignement du droit en Belgique (1870-1940) : la formation du juriste entre orientation professionnalisante et conception scientifique
  • Gebreyesus Abegaz Yimer (Mekelle University School of Law/KU Leuven): Ethiopian Civil Code and its Impact on Adjudication of Loan Cases: A History of Failure?
  • Bruno Debaenst (University of Uppsala): Hälsningar från Sverige – Getuigenissen van een Vlaamse rechtshistoricus in Uppsala
  • Discussion
(source: Standen & Landen)

BOOK: Otto DANWERTH, Benedetta ALBANI & Thomas DUVE (eds.), Normatividades e instituciones eclesiásticas en el virreinato del Perú, siglos XVI–XIX [Global Perspectives on Legal History; 12] (Frankfurt: MPIeR, 2019), VI + 252 p. ISBN 978-3-944773-22-3; OPEN ACCESS

(image source: MPIeR)

With »Normatividades e instituciones eclesiásticas en el virreinato del Perú, siglos XVI–XIX«, edited by Otto Danwerth, Benedetta Albani, and Thomas Duve, the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History presents the newest publication in its Open Access book series Global Perspectives on Legal History.

Ecclesiastical institutions and actors played key roles in the formation of normative orders in early modern Ibero-America. Their importance, which has already been illustrated by an earlier volume on New Spain (GPLH 5, published in 2018), is now further corroborated and explored in case studies focusing on the viceroyalties of Peru and of Río de la Plata.

The eight chapters of this Spanish-speaking volume deal with a diversity of themes relating to both urban and rural locations in what is now Peru, Bolivia, Argentina and Chile. They examine the ecclesiastical legislation of Toribio de Mogrovejo, explore the role of legal experts in canon law litigation, compare the activities of Jesuit missionaries in Austria and Peru, explain the life of the nuns in the Monasterio de la Concepción in Lima, discuss problems of diocesan administration in outlying zones of the archdiocese of La Plata, and analyse the ius patronatus in Chile during the independence movement.

The editors’ purpose has been to present approaches that explore the relationship between different types of normativities, their local adaptations, their links to global debates, the forms of conflict resolution, as well as the role of jurists, theologians and other actors. The contributions propose new research fields for legal history and the history of the Church, but are also relevant for social and cultural historians. They contribute to a better understanding of the normative religious universe of Ibero-America between the 16th and 19th centuries. An upcoming third volume will cover the viceroyalty of New Granada, and the tetralogy will be completed with a final volume on Brazil.

The volume is available as usual on the website of the MPIeR for PDF download in Open Access:

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: Student Research Colloquium (20-21 November 2019, Boston) (DEADLINE: 15 July 2019)

(Source: ASLH)

We would like to remind the followers of our blog of the Student Research Colloquium that is organized right before the American Society for Legal History’s annual meeting, this year in Boston:

The American Society for Legal History will host a Student Research Colloquium (SRC) on Wednesday, November 20, and Thursday, November 21, 2019, immediately preceding the ASLH’s annual meeting in Boston, Massachusetts.  The SRC annually enables eight Ph.D. students and law students to discuss their in-progress dissertations and articles with distinguished ASLH-affiliated scholars.

The SRC’s target audience includes early-post-coursework graduate students and historically minded law students.  The colloquium seeks to introduce such students to legal history, to each other, and to the legal-historical scholarly community.  Students working in all chronological periods, including ancient and medieval history, and all geographical fields are encouraged to apply, as are students who have not yet received any formal training in legal history.  Applicants who have not yet had an opportunity to present their work to the ASLH are particularly encouraged to apply.  A student may be on the program for the annual meeting and participate in the SRC in the same year.

Each participating student will pre-circulate a twenty-page, double-spaced, footnoted paper to the entire group.  The group will discuss these papers at the colloquium, under the guidance of two faculty directors.  The ASLH will provide at least partial and, in most cases, total reimbursement for travel, hotel, and conference-registration costs.

The application deadline is July 15, 2019Applicants should electronically submit:

  • a cover letter describing, among other things, how far along you are and how many years remain in your course of study;
  • a CV;
  • a two-page, single-spaced “research statement” that begins with a title and proceeds to describe the in-progress research project that you propose to present at the colloquium; and
  • a letter of recommendation from a faculty member, sent separately from, or together with, the other materials.
Organizers will notify all applicants of their decisions by August 15, 2019.  Please direct questions and applications to John Wertheimer at:

All info can be found here

JOURNAL: American Journal of Legal History LIX (2019), Issue 2

(image source: OUP)

‘Africa Needs Many Lawyers Trained for the Need of their Peoples’: Struggles over Legal Education in Kwame Nkrumah’s Ghana (John Harrington; Ambreena Manji)
In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the setting up of university law schools in many African nations led to often bitter battles over the purpose of legal education. The stakes in these struggles were high. Deliberately neglected under colonial rule, legal education was an important focus for the leaders of new states, including Kwame Nkrumah, first President of Ghana. It was also a significant focus for expatriate British scholars and American foundations, seeking to shape the development of new universities in Africa. Disputes centred on whether training would have a wholly academic basis, and be taught exclusively in the University of Ghana, or be provided in addition through a dedicated law school with a more practical ethos. This debate became entangled in a wider confrontation over academic freedom between Nkrumah’s increasing authoritarian government and the university, with its significant body of expatriate lecturers, and indeed in wider political and class struggles in Ghana as a whole. Tensions came to a head in the period between 1962 and 1964 when the American Dean of Law was deported along with other staff on the foot of allegations of their seditious intent. In this paper we document these complex struggles, identifying the broader political stakes within them, picking out the main, rival philosophies of legal education which animated them, and relating all of these to the broader historical conjuncture of decolonisation. Drawing on a review of archival materials from the time, published histories and memoirs, as well as interviews, we aim to show that debates over legal education had a significance going beyond the confines of the Law Faculty. They engaged questions of African nationalism, development and social progress, the ambivalent legacy of British rule and the growing influence of the United States in these territories.
“Full Justice May Be Done Them”: The Case of Bill, Charles, Jupiter, Randolph, et al. v. William A. Carr in a Florida Freedmen’s Bureau Court (Zachary Newkirk)
Immediately after the Civil War, freedmen and freedwomen faced an uncertain legal landscape, caught between former owners, reactionary state courts, and a still-potent federal military presence. A system of federal Freedmen’s Bureau courts provided many freedpeople with a forum to seek justice outside of often-hostile state courts. A remarkably complete set of documents from one Bureau Court in Leon County, Florida, reveals the extent to which freedpeople and local white legal elites used the new federal court for their respective benefits. The case of Bill, Charles, Jupiter, Randolph, et al. v. William A. Carr provides a new analytical framework to consider the post-Civil War legal landscape in the South. Not only were freedpeople eager to appear before these federal tribunals, but Southern white lawyers—facing immense political uncertainty in 1865 and 1866—were willing to practice in Bureau courts. Both groups’ legal arguments reflected the most pressing issues of the time: fair contracting and compensation for freedpeoples’ labor; the desire for societal order and stability; and competing notions of subjugation over a recently enslaved group versus justice and equality for them. The success of black people in gaining access to the legal system benefited local white communities and especially white professional lawyers through fees, career advancement, and reputation. Meanwhile, the success of white lawyers in forums like the Bureau courts benefited freedmen, presenting them with skilled allies in new judicial spaces where their rights and freedoms could be articulated, defended, and advanced.
Fraud and Dishonesty in King’s Bench and Star Chamber (Henry Mares)
This article considers various fraud-related misdemeanours in English criminal law. Based on extensive archival research, it discusses a set of prosecutions by the Attorneys-General in seventeenth-century England in Star Chamber and King’s Bench in order to understand the use and meaning of the concepts of fraud and dishonesty in the early modern period.
Justice under Administration: An Overview of Judiciary and Courts in Spain, 1834–1870 (Julia Solla)
This paper offers an overview of the administration of justice in Spain between 1834 and 1868, a period politically marked by the reign of Isabel II and legally characterised by a homogeneous understanding of the instrumental role of justice within the framework of political powers. This stage was crucial for the construction of contemporary Spanish judicial power, since in the 1830s the judicature of a state conceived as European only (i.e. no longer a transatlantic empire) began to be restructured, while in 1870, a judicial administration recognisable to contemporaries in spite of its transformations was finally designed and consolidated. Within this context, this article provides some guidelines and keys to help unravel the complexity of this judicial construct, transcending a mere ‘political’ explanation and delving into other illuminating areas, such as legal culture, the concept of legality, the magistracy’s role and institutional practices. This approach demonstrates that, among other possible options, the decision was made to transform the inherited judiciary into an apparatus ruled by administrative logics, which gradually made possible the implementation of a legal order and only much later would acquire a genuine constitutional status.
Re-tying the Knot? Remarriage and Divorce by Consent in mid-Victorian England (Penelope Russell)
This article examines the life circumstances of the mid-Victorian women who petitioned for dissolution of their marriage by commencing proceedings for nullity or divorce at the Court for Divorce and Matrimonial Causes in two sample years, 1858 and 1868. The results of a longitudinal analysis of multiple source records relating to the women petitioners challenge currently accepted understandings of these proceedings. Contrary to official reports at the time, the majority of female petitioners in the sample years remarried and did so promptly, suggesting that the ability to regularise new unions (current or prospective) was an important consideration for them. The conduct of proceedings, considered in the context of the social and economic circumstances of the parties (including their age, occupation, and family size), reveals a heretofore undiscovered prevalence of undefended divorce and suggests, in effect, a tacitly accepted practice of divorce by consent.

Book reviews:

  •  Xavier Prévost, Jacques Cujas (1522-1590). Jurisconsulte humaniste (Xavier Godin)
  • Martti Koskenniemi, Walter Rech, and Manuel Jiménez Fonseca (eds.), International Law and Empire: Historical Explorations (Alberto Rinaldi)
  • Johannes Liebrecht, Die junge Rechtsgeschichte: Kategorienwandel in der rechtshistorischen Germanistik der Zwischenkriegszeit (Kjel A Modéer)
  • Carlos Petit, Historia del derecho mercantil (Luisa Brunori; Olivier Descamps)
(source: OUP)

BOOK: David M. CROWE, Ed., Stalin’s Soviet Justice: ‘Show’ Trials, War Crimes Trials, and Nuremberg (London: Bloomsbury, 2019). ISBN 9781350083363, £73.44

(Source: Bloomsbury)

 Bloomsbury has published a new edited collection on law and the justice system under Joseph Stalin.


From the 'show' trials of the 1920s and 1930s to the London Conference, this book examines the Soviet role in the Nuremberg IMT trial through the prism of the ideas and practices of earlier Soviet legal history, detailing the evolution of Stalin's ideas about the trail of Nazi war criminals.

Stalin believed that an international trial for Nazi war criminals was the best way to show the world the sacrifices his country had made to defeat Hitler, and he, together with his legal mouthpiece Andrei Vyshinsky, maintained tight control over Soviet representatives during talks leading up to the creation of the Nuremberg IMT trial in 1945, and the trial itself. But Soviet prosecutors at Nuremberg were unable to deal comfortably with the complexities of an open, western-style legal proceeding, which undercut their effectiveness throughout the trial. However, they were able to present a significant body of evidence that underscored the brutal nature of Hitler's racial war in Russia from 1941-45, a theme which became central to Stalin's efforts to redefine international criminal law after the war.

Stalin's Soviet Justice provides a nuanced analysis of the Soviet justice system at a crucial turning point in European history and it will be vital reading for scholars and advanced students of the legal history of the Soviet Union, the history of war crimes and the aftermath of the Second World War.


David M. Crowe is Presidential Fellow at Chapman University, USA and Professor Emeritus of History & Law at Elon University, USA. He has been a Visiting Scholar at Columbia University's Harriman Institute and a Fellow at the Center for Slavic, Eurasian, and East European Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the recipient of the Southern Conference on Slavic Studies' 2010 Richard Stites Senior Scholar Award for Contributions to the Field of Slavic Studies. 


Introduction, David M. Crowe (Elon University, USA)
1. Late Imperial and Soviet 'Show' Trials, 1878-1938, David M. Crowe (Elon University, USA) 
2. Traitors or War Criminals: Collaboration on Trial in Soviet Courts in the 1940s, Alexander V. Prusin (New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, USA)
3. 'Nikto ne zabyt': The Politicization of Soviet War Dead, Thomas Earl Porter (North Carolina A&T State University, USA)
4. The Human Face of Soviet Justice: Aron Trainin and the Origins of the Soviet Doctrine of International Criminal Law, Valentyna Polunina (Heidelberg University, Germany)
5. 'May Justice be Done!': The Soviet Union and the London Conference (1945), Irina Schulmeister-André (Independent Scholar, Germany)
6. The Soviet Union at the Palace of Justice: Law, Intrigue, and International Rivalry in the Nuremberg Trials, Francine Hirsch (University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA)
7. Soviet Journalists at Nuremberg: Establishing the Soviet War Narrative, Jeremy Hicks (Queen Mary University of London, UK)
8. From Geneva to Nuremberg to New York: Andrei Vyshinsky, Raphaël Lemkin, and the Struggle to Outlaw Revolutionary Violence, State Terror, and Genocide, Douglas Irvin-Erickson (George Mason University, USA)
Select Bibliography

More information here