28 April 2010

CALL FOR PAPERS: International Seminar on the History of the Atlantic World

I received the following notice on Monday. While the deadline is very soon, I wanted to pass it on to you:

The aims of the International Seminar on the History of the Atlantic World are to advance the scholarship of young historians of many nations interested in aspects of Atlantic history in the formative years; to help create an international community of scholars familiar with approaches, archives, and intellectual traditions different from their own and who understand America's historical involvement in the Atlantic world; and ultimately to further international understanding.

The theme of the 2010 meeting is Justice: Europe in America, 1500- 1825; applicants' work should be related to this topic. The Seminar will meet in early August at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The exact length of the Seminar will be dependent to some extent on the number of participants, but the probable duration is about 8-10 days. In the course of the Seminar, discussion and workshops will focus on papers, work in progress, and prospects for future work; sessions will be chaired by invited commentators.

The Fellows of the Seminar will generally be scholars who are recent recipients of the Ph.D. or its equivalent or advanced doctoral students. There will be about 20-25 places available in the Seminar, with non-U.S. scholars making up a sizable portion of the group. Fellows will have their primary travel and conference expenses paid by the Seminar (except some meals), though it is hoped that some of the expenses of the participants will be defrayed by their own institutions. A few more established scholars who are engaged in research on topics that are particularly appropriate for the Seminar may also be included, but they will be asked to provide their own funding whenever possible.

Fellows will present an original paper embodying work in progress related to the topic of the Seminar. The papers, written in English, will be distributed in advance of the sessions, so that the meetings themselves will involve discussion of the research and insights rather than reading of the papers. This means that participants must be able to provide such a paper by early-July 2010. The papers, after final corrections, will be included in the Seminar's Working Paper series, which will be distributed to interested parties upon request and will eventually be posted on the Seminar's Web site.

Completed applications are due by May 3, 2010; we hope to notify applicants of the results by the end of May.

To apply for the 2010 Seminar please download the application and the recommendation form (both are available as a Word document or as a PDF). Applicants will need to submit the application along with a current cv and two letters of recommendation.

For more information or if you have questions please contact:

Emily LeBaron
Administrative Director
Atlantic History Seminar
Harvard University
Cambridge, MA 02138
phone:  617-496-3066 or email:

NOTICE: Writing Legal History: Breaking out of National Frameworks

Monday 24 May 2010, Maison Française d’Oxford

Convenor: Frédéric AUDREN, CNRS-MFO

Introduction by Luc BOROT (MFO), Jacques KRYNEN (Université Toulouse 1 Capitole) and Frédéric AUDREN (CNRS-MFO)

10:00 - 13.00

John CAIRNS (University of Edinburgh), National, Transnational, and European Legal Histories: Paradigms and Problems
Jean-Louis HALPÉRIN (ENS Ulm, Paris), Is it time for the de-construction of myths in French legal history ?
Michael LOBBAN (Mary Queen, University of London), The Varieties of Legal History
Alain WIJFFELS (CNRS - Centre Georges Chevrier), Le ius commune européen: les limites d'une base commune pour l'historiographie du droit anglais et français
Paul BRAND (All Souls, University of Oxford), The English medieval Common Law and the learned law tradition

14:00 - 17.00

Soazick KERNEIS (Université Paris Ouest), Alternative Dispute Resolution. Penal Law, History and Anthropology
Andrew LEWIS (University College London), The Tithe and La Dîme : similarities and différence
Chantal STEBBINGS (University of Exeter), The ‘Unreported’ Tax Case: its Place in the Development of Law in Nineteenth Century England
David DEROUSSIN (Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3), Une nouvelle nationalisation du droit : la culture juridique française vue par la doctrine (1ère moitié du XXè s.)

Conclusion : Louis ASSIER-ANDRIEU (CNRS-ISP Cachan)

With the support of Institute of European and Comparative Law, Service Culturel de l’Ambassade de France à Londres, Centre de Théorie et Analyse de Droit (CNRS-UMR 7074), Centre Lyonnais d’Histoire du Droit et de la Pensée Politique, and Centre Toulousain d’Histoire du Droit et des Idées Politiques

- All welcome -

For any further detail, please contact Frédéric AUDREN:
Maison Française d’Oxford, 2- 10 Norham Road, Oxford OX2 6SE
Tel: 01865 274 220 ;

CALL FOR PAPERS: Southern African Society of Legal Historians Conference



The Southern African Society of Legal Historians will hold its Conference in tandem with the Conference of the Society of Law Teachers of Southern Africa (SLTSA).

The theme of the Southern African Society of Legal Historians Conference is “Fraud and Corruption in the Private and Public Sphere”.

Should you wish to present a paper at the Southern African Society of Legal Historians Conference, please send an abstract of approximately 300 words to P. Finney at The deadline for the abstracts is 30 September 2010.

Details regarding the date and process of registration for the conference will be circulated at a later stage, as soon as these details have been finalised.

The Southern African Society of Legal Historians Conference proceedings will appear in Fundamina: A Journal of Legal History volume 17(1) of 2011. Papers submitted for publication as part of the conference proceedings will be subjected to the normal peer-review process of the journal.

23 April 2010

Conference: Nordic Legal Traditions and the Changing European Context

The Matthias Calonius Society, the association of Finnish legal historians, will celebrate its 20th birthday this year by organising an international conference on the ”Nordic Legal Traditions and the Changing European Context.” The event will take place on the 19th of May in Calonia, the Law Faculty building at the University of Turku (street address: Vänrikinkatu 2), and it is open to the public.

The conference will focus on the changes of academic legal history in the Nordic countries. The presentations will deal with the effects of the European legal tradition on Scandinavian legal history (Jussi Sallila, Helsinki), the development legal history teaching in Finland (Mia Korpiola, Helsinki) and in Norway (Dag Michalsen, Oslo), and the relationship of the Baltic legal history vis-à-vis the Nordic countries and its treatment of the Soviet legal past (Marju Luts, Tartu).

Matthias Calonius (1738–1817) was Professor of Law at the Academy of Turku and Finland’s Procutator. He is known as the founder of Finnish legal science, and he played a pivotal part in the drafting of the Finnish constitutional structure when Finland was annexed to the Russian Empire as a Grand-Duchy in 1809. Calonius thus exerted significant influence on the shaping of the Finnish legal culture. The theme of the conference, the construction of legal traditions and identities, stood in the center of Calonius’s interests.

Registrations and inquiries: Marianne Vasara-Aaltonen at by 3rd of May. Please notify if you wish to attend the conference dinner.

22 April 2010

Book: Von der Staatengesellschaft zur Weltrepublik ? (H. Steiger)

H. STEIGER, Von der Staatengesellschaft zur Weltrepublik ? Aufsätze zur Geschichte des Völkerrechts aus vierzig Jahren, Baden-Baden: Nomos Verlag, 2009 [Studien zur Geschichte des Völkerrechts], XIII + 786 p. ISBN 978-3-8329-5073-6.

The Max Planck Institute for European Legal History recently (July 2009) published an interesting compilation of various articles and contributions written (most of them in German) between 1966 and 2007 on the History of International Law by Prof. em. Heinhard Steiger (Univ. Giessen).

Table of Contents (translated from German):

I Generalities
International Law (1)
From International Law of Christendom to World Citizen's Law. Remarks on the division of Epochs in the History of International Law (51)
Religion and the Historical Development of International Law (67)

II History of Ideas
Ius binds Mars. Classic International Law and its Science as Early Modern Cultural Phenomenon (105)
Solidarity and Sovereignty in Vattel reconsidered (133)
International Law and Natural Law between Christian Wolff and Adolf Lasson (143)
Peace through Institution. Peace and the League of Nations in the writings of Kant and afterwards (167)

III General International Orders
Legal Structures of the European State Order 1648-1792 (191)
International Law versus Feudal Law ? Treaty Arrangements on Imperial Italian fiefs in the Early Modern Period (233)
Law between Europe and Asia in the 16th and 17th Centuries ? (267)

IV Peace
Peace in Legal History (293)
Remarks on the Treaties of Peace of Crépy and Laonnais between Charles V and Francis I, 18 September 1544 (357)
The Peace of Westphalia, Constitution for Europe ? (383)
Conclusion of Peace and Amnesty in the Münster and Osnabrück Treaties (431)
Preambles to and in Peace Treaties of the Early Modern Period (469)
Peace Treaties from Paris to Versailles (513) [In English]
The League of Nations' Post-War Order - Potential and Limitations (553)

V The Laws of War
The bearers of the ius belli ac pacis 1648-1806 (581)
The ius belli ac pacis in the Old Holy Roman Empire between 1645 and 1801 (599)
Occupatio Bellica in the International Law Doctrine of Christendom (Late Middle Ages-18th Century) (627)

VI International Law in a divided World
On the Foundation of the Universality of International Law (667)
Legal Questions of the Ostverträge 1970 (693)

VI The End of International Law ?
Is the Era of Sovereign States ending ? (703)
Do we need a World Republic ? (729)
Remarks concerning the normative structure of Modern World Order in a historical perspective (749) [In English]

References of initial publications (777)
Publications on the History International Law (781)

16 April 2010

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Roman Legal Tradition

I just received the following information from H-LAW:

The editors of Roman Legal Tradition welcome submissions in English for the forthcoming issue.

Roman Legal Tradition is a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the civilian tradition in ancient, medieval, and modern civil law. It is published by the Ames Foundation and the University of Glasgow School of Law.

The journal adheres to the principles of Open Access. Contents are available without charge, and may be freely reproduced and distributed for non-commercial purposes. Contributors are encouraged to distribute published submissions to colleagues and students, and to upload to electronic repositories.

Contents are distributed by HeinOnline, and available for download from the journal website.

Roman Legal Tradition is edited by Ernest Metzger (University of Glasgow School of Law) with the support of an international board of editors.

15 April 2010

Position as a professor in Luxembourg

The University of Luxembourg has an opening for a full-time professor/assistant professor in Philosophy and/or History of law. It is interesting to note that: "Taking into account the vitality and the creativity of the Anglo-Saxon, Southern European and Scandinavian traditions, a good knowledge of their authors is necessary." Applicants need to have a Ph.D. in law, publications in internationally known reviews, have to be able to work in a multilinguistic environment (in depth knowledge of French and English is essential; working knowledge of German is an advantage), etc. Applications in French or English need to be sent before 31 May to:
Professeur André Prüm
Doyen de la Faculté de Droit, d’Economie et de Finance
Université du Luxembourg
162a, avenue de la Faïencerie
L-1511 Luxembourg
For more questions (profile, documents to be joined to the application) contact the address above.

12 April 2010

CALL FOR PAPERS: The Twentieth British Legal History Conference (13-16 July 2011)

The Call for Papers for the Twentieth British Legal History Conference has been announced.

The conference:

will be held in Cambridge from Wednesday 13 July 2011 to Saturday 16 July 2011. The conference theme will be 'Law and Legal Process'.

The conference addresses the intersection between law and legal process, the ways in which the processes of courts and other tribunals, the practices of judges and lawyers, and the needs of litigants, influence each other and shape the development of the law; and the influences in turn of legal doctrine upon the practices of those coming into contact with the law.

The conference organisers welcome papers concerning all jurisdictions, branches of the law and historical periods. Ideally, papers should reflect the conference theme. Papers reflecting the results of innovative legal history research are most welcome. Submissions from doctoral students are encouraged.

Proposals for papers (up to 500 words) are invited, to reach the organisers – preferably by email attachment (in Word or pdf format) sent to the address below – by 31 August 2010. If potential contributors are unsure whether their proposals suitably reflect the theme, the organisers are very happy to be contacted informally by email (again to the address below).

A draft programme and details of registration and accommodation will be circulated early in 2011.

Conference email:

Conference Organisers
  • Professor Sir John Baker
  • Professor David Ibbetson
  • Dr Neil Jones
  • Dr Isabella Alexander
  • Dr Matt Dyson
University of Cambridge, Faculty of Law, 10 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DZ, UK

06 April 2010

REMINDER: Symposium on Comparative Early Modern Legal History (23 April 2010)

'New Perspectives on Legal Pluralism', a Symposium on Comparative Early Modern Legal History held under the auspices of the Center for Renaissance Studies will take place at the Newberry Library in Chicago on Friday, 23 April 2010.

The symposium meets:

to discuss the comparative legal history of the Atlantic world in the period c1492 to 1815. Each year we offer a one-day conference that brings together law professors, historians, and social scientists to explore a particular topic in comparative legal history, broadly understood.

The site reads:

Colonialism enhanced legal pluralism. European, African, Asian, and American polities relied on layered and multi-centric systems of law, and their encounters generated new and often repeating patterns of jurisdictional politics. This widespread legal pluralism at times contributed to regional integration by making substantively different legal systems intelligible to travelers and merchants. It also posed challenges to imperial administration as subordinate authorities sought to establish, expand, or protect prerogatives to act independently of metropolitan sovereigns and courts. With recent scholarship establishing clearly the benefits of framing colonial law as jurisdictionally complex and unstable, opportunities are now in sight to push this perspective further in a number of directions.

One interesting set of problems involves questions about how conflicts over the prerogatives of delegated legal authorities to discipline and control subordinate or dependent populations related to the changing contours of imperial constitutions or ideologies of rule. Conference participants may explore the ways in which such figures as garrison commanders, plantation owners, ship captains, Company officials, missionaries, and others with some measure of legal authority positioned themselves in relation to both metropolitan and colonial law. Did they make innovative legal claims or exert influence on regional patterns? We invite investigations of the conditions under which such actors deferred to imperial authority, the sources they drew upon to defend their legal prerogatives, and the nature of their interactions with various courts. Other studies might consider the degree to which the politics of making and defending claims to semi-autonomous legal authority informed broader, even regional, political processes. As we bring such connections into sight, it may be possible to refine comparisons of the politics of legal pluralism in different parts of a colonial regime, or between the Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Indian Ocean worlds.

A related theme focuses on the legal strategies of subordinate groups. Taking into account a framework of legal pluralism, scholars can move beyond the study of “resistance” to ask questions about the legal participation of formally subordinate groups—even some that were seemingly powerless before the law. Forum shopping, petitions for mercy, violence against magistrates, new genres of legal writing, maneuvers to escape indebtedness—these and other strategies had immediate and sometimes far-reaching institutional effects. In addition to tracing such connections, we might probe the formative influences on legal strategies. How did knowledge about law circulate? To what extent did information or stories about of the effectiveness of particular legal strategies carry across social strata, imperial divides, and oceans? How did legal actors imagine and describe plural legal orders? With attention to these and other, related topics, the conference seeks to open the study of legal pluralism to new approaches and insights.

Additional information, including the schedule, is available here. Note that attendance is free, but advance registration is required.

01 April 2010

Heavy reading: Oxford history laws of England

Volumes XI (English legal system), XII (private law) and XIII (fields of development) covering 1820-1914, of The Oxford History of the Laws of England have been published as one set of 3840 pages. Authors are: J. Stuart Anderson, Keith Smith, Michael Lobban, Patrick Polden, William Cornish and Ray Cock.
ISBN13: 9780199258833 ISBN10: 019925883X (The list price is impressive: 450 £.)