16 May 2019

CALL FOR PAPERS: "Pedagogic Content and Goals of Legal Education Outside National Borders" [Teaching National Law Outside National Borders (19th-20th Centuries)] (Bordeaux: Université de Bordeaux, 13 MAR 2020); DEADLINE 1 SEP 2019

Second conference, Bordeaux, March 13th, 2020

« Pedagogic  Content  and  Goals  of  Legal  Education  Outside  National Borders »


Silvia Falconieri (chargée de recherches CNRS, IMAF) :
Catherine Fillon (professeur, Université Jean Moulin Lyon III) : Laetitia Guerlain (maître de conférences, Université de Bordeaux) : laetitia.guerlain@u-
Florence Renucci (directrice de recherches CNRS, IMAF) :

For the second conference (Bordeaux, March 13th, 2020), proposals shall be sent to the four convenors with a brief résumé, no later than sept. 1st, 2019. Answers shall be given to the candidates by oct. 15th).


These past few decades, French historiography has made important progress regarding the history of legal education. A Société pour l’histoire des facultés de droit was founded in 1983, allowing the development and coordination of research in this specific field. Despite this progress, the history of legal education has, for a long time, remained a mere history of ideas and schools of thought, and has only considered law schools as a mere structure enabling ideas to emerge and develop. More recently however, French historiography has paid more attention to the law schools themselves, in the perspective of a social history. Studies have been published about the functioning of law schools, their staff, their students or their budget. Such studies already existed in other fields of higher education (Charles, 2004 ; Picard, 2007 ; Singaravelou, 2009 ; Ferté et Barrera, 2010), but legal historians have only recently engaged in them. This historiographical turn is sometimes linked with the current debates regarding global law and the transformations of French legal education (Ancel et Heuschling, 2016 ; Jamin et Van Caeneghem, 2016).

This renewal of research led legal historians to investigate, for example, the birth of legal disciplines and the carriers of law professors. A database of 600 law professors (1804-1950) called Siprojuris has been launched on line a few years ago, under the supervision of Catherine Fillon. This important collective work has opened new perspectives for the social history of legal elites. It has also made intellectual portraits easier. One must also mention the creation, in 2008, of a European network dedicated to the history of legal education (Réseau européen pour l’histoire de l’enseignement du droit).

Thus, the progress of the history of legal education in the contemporary era has been substantial. This cycle of conferences intends to build on this dynamism to address a phenomenon that has not been investigated enough so far : the history of legal education outside national borders in the 19th and 20th centuries. Even if the 19th and 20th centuries are undeniably a time of nationalisation of law and its teaching (compared, for instance, to the Middle Ages or the Modern Times), they also are a time of spreading of the French academic world (Audren et Halpérin, 2013).

-          Firstly, in the context of military or colonial expansion, mainland France tried to duplicate its legal education system within new institutions (creation of law schools in countries that fell under the rule of the Napoleonian Empire ; law schools in the colonies (Alger or Hanoï, for instance) ; law schools in eastern countries such as Egypt or Lebanon, etc.).

-          Secondly, outside those authoritarian contexts, many law professors, especially from the 1920s-1930s onward, travelled abroad in order to promote French legal culture (lectures, lessons in many cultural institutes, etc.).

Therefore, this transnational approach of legal education intends to address three issues that have recently emerged : the raise of a transnational history of education in other fields than law ; the historiographical turn towards global or connected history ; the current reflection on global legal education. We are very much interested in inviting foreign colleagues that could enlighten us about similar experiments in their own countries, thus making comparison possible. This research programm will be developed within 3 conferences :

1)      Lyon, November 22nd, 2018 : « Places and Shapes of Legal Education Outside National Borders ».

This first colloquium intends to understand better the structures of legal education outside national borders. We know that in the colonies, the French state has sometimes created law schools similar to those existing in metropolitan France. Yet, in the most numerous cases, France had to be more inventive in territories that did not abdicate their sovereignty, especially when other countries intended to promote their own legal cultures in such places. This first meeting will seek to sketch the multiple forms that legal education can take depending on the context (lectures, creation of law schools, creation of cultural institutes, control on local institutions already existing, etc.). With what partners and with what money was France able to promote its legal education system ?

2)      Bordeaux, March 13th, 2020 : « Pedagogic Content and Goals of Legal Education Outside National Borders ».

This second symposium will specifically address the question of the content and goals of law courses outside national borders. What are the purposes of such teachings depending on the local context ? (educating local elites ? making French students familiar with local law ? promoting French legal culture in occupied countries ? etc.). For example, do law professors teach French civil law the same way in the colonies and in cultural institutes ? Do they adapt the pedagogic content of their teachings according to the kind of students they address ?

3)      Aix-Marseille, 2021 : « The Actors of Legal Education Outside National Borders ».

This last colloquium will question the actors of legal education outside national borders, namely professors and students. As for law professors, the main question will be about the reasons of their exile, be it temporary or long-lasting. For what reasons does a law professor choose to go abroad to teach ? For material reasons ? Intellectual reasons ? Ideological ones ? What does this experience abroad teach us about those scholars ? Is it a sign of their openmindedness ? Does is have an influence on their way of teaching law ? Does it bear a political meaning ? As for law students, prosopography studies would be very welcome. Students’ migrations can do a lot for the circulation of knowledge. They can also put the states’ stability to risk.


COLL., Actes des États généraux de la recherche sur le Droit et la Justice, Paris, Lextenso, 2018, voir en particulier les articles de la partie « professions juridiques et judiciaires ».

ANCEL (P.) et HEUSCHLING (L.) (dir.), La transnationalisation de l’enseignement du droit, Bruxelles, Larcier, 2016.

AUDREN (F.) et HALPERIN (J.-L.), La culture juridique fraaise entre mythes et réalités, XIXe-XXe siècles, Paris, CNRS éd., 2013.

AUDREN (F.), « Alma Mater sous le regard de l’historien du droit. Cultures académiques, formation des élites et identités professionnelles », in KRYNEN (J.) et D’ALTEROCHE (B.) (dir.), L’histoire du droit en France. Nouvelles tendances, nouveaux territoires, Paris, Classiques Garnier, 2014, p. 145-172.

BASTIER (J.), « L’enseignement du droit à Alger de 1879 à 1914 », in NELIDOFF (Ph.) (dir.), Les facultés de droit de province au XIXe siècle, tome 1, Bilan et perspectives de la recherche, Toulouse, Presses de l’Université Toulouse 1 Capitole, 2009, p. 519-542.

CHARLE (Ch.), « Enseignement supérieur et expansion internationale (1870-1930). Des instituts pour un nouvel empire ? », in HEILBRON (J.), LENOIR (R.) et SAPIRO (G.) (dir.), Pour une histoire des sciences sociales. Hommage à Pierre Bourdieu, Paris, Fayard, 2004, p. 323-347.

CHARLE (Ch.), SCHRIEWER (J.) et WAGNER (P.) (dir.), Transnational Intellectual Networks. Forms of Academic Knowledge and the Search for Cultural Identities, Francfort, New York, Campus, 2004.

DE MARI (E.), FABRE (M.), RENUCCI (F.), Cours d’histoire du droit colonial, UNJF (en ligne), leçon 10 « De la connaissance à la réorganisation du droit ».

FALCONIERI (S.), « Le « droit de la race ». Apprendre l’antisémitisme à la Faculté de droit de
Paris (1940-1944) », Clio@themis. Revue électronique d’histoire du droit, 7, 2014 (en ligne).

FERTE (P.) et BARERRA (C.) (dir.), Étudiants de l’exil. Migrations internationales et universités
refuges (XVIe-XXe  s.), Toulouse, Presses universitaires du Mirail, 2010.

FILLON (C.), « L’enseignement du droit, instrument et enjeu de la diplomatie culturelle française. L’exemple de l’Égypte au début du XXe siècle », Mil neuf cent. Revue d’histoire intellectuelle, n° 29 [La Belle Époque des juristes. Enseigner le droit dans la République], 2011/1, p. 123-144.

FILLON (C.), « Le Jésuite, l’Universitaire et le Politique : stratégies de recrutement du corps enseignant de l’École Française de droit de Beyrouth (1913-1939) », in GAVEN (J.-C.) et AUDREN (F.) (dir.), Les facultés de droit de province aux XIXe et XXe siècles, tome 3, Les conquêtes universitaires, Toulouse, Presses Universitaires de Toulouse 1 Capitole, 2011, p. 115-138.

GAILLARD (A.-M.) et (J.), Les enjeux des migrations scientifiques internationales. De la quête du savoir à la circulation des compétences, Paris, L’Harmattan, 1999.

GONZALEZ (C.), « Education and Empire : Colonial Universities in Mexico, India and the United States », Research and Occasional Paper Series, CSHE-Berkeley, 2014 (en ligne).

HALARY (Ch.), Les exilés du savoir. Les migrations scientifiques internationales et leurs mobiles,
Paris, L’Harmattan, 1994.

HALPERIN (J.-L.) (dir.), Paris, capitale juridique (1804-1950). Études de socio-histoire sur la Faculté de droit de Paris, Paris, Éditions rue d’Ulm, 2011.

JAMIN (Ch.) et VAN CAENEGEM (W.) (dir.), The Internationalisation of Legal Education, Switzerland, Springer, 2016.

Outre-Mers. Revue d’histoire, t. 105, 394-395 [Enseignement supérieur et universités dans les espaces coloniaux : histoire, comparaisons (du XIXe siècle aux indépendances)], 2017, coordonné par Hélène CHARTON et Marc MICHEL.

PICARD (E.), « Étudiants et enseignants : du dossier individuel à la prosopographie », Revue administrative, 2007, p. 55-58 (en ligne sur HAL).

PONTHOREAU (M.-Cl.) (dir.), La dénationalisation de l’enseignement juridique. Comparaisons
des pratiques, Paris, Institut Universitaire Varenne, coll. « Colloques & Essais », 2016.
SINGARAVELOU (P.), « L’enseignement supérieur colonial. Un état des lieux », Histoire de
l’éducation, 122/2009, p. 71-92

RENUCCI (F.) (dir.), Dictionnaire des juristes ultramarins (XVIIIe-XXe  siècles), rapport de recherche GIP « Mission de recherche Droit et Justice », 2012.

TRONCHET (G.), Savoirs en diplomatie. Une histoire sociale et transnationale de la politique universitaire internationale de la France (années 1870-années 1930), thèse de doctorat en histoire contemporaine, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, 2014.


Frédéric Audren (directeur de recherches CNRS, École de droit de Sciences Po) Isabelle Giraudou (professeur associée, Université de Tokyo)
Jean-Louis Halpérin (professeur, ENS)
Béatrice Jaluzot (maître de conférences, Sciences Po Lyon) Emmanuelle Picard (maître de conférences, ENS Lyon) Guillaume Tronchet (chercheur affilié à l’IHMC, ENS-Paris 1)

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