22 February 2013

CONFERENCE: Laymen as Judges in European Courts. Comparative Legal History of Procedural Law in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (Ghent, 15-16 March 2013)

At the occasion of the International Francqui Chair held by Prof. H. Pihlajamäki (Helsinki), Ghent University organizes an international colloquium on the theme "Laymen as Judges in European Courts".

Prof. dr. Paul Van Cauwenberghe (rector, Ghent University) will hand over the University's medal on the first day of the event.

A complete list of speakers, as well as the time schedule, is available on the Ghent Legal History Institute's website. Prior registration with Mrs. Karin Pensaert is compulsory (

SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION: Donlan on Spanish West Florida and the American Territory of Orleans, 1803-1810

A draft of my 'Entangled up in Red, White, and Blue: Spanish West Florida and the American Territory of Orleans, 1803-1810' is available here and will soon be available here.  

The piece has been accepted for Thomas Duve (ed.), Entanglements in Legal History: Conceptual Approaches to Legal History, Global Perspective on Legal History vol. 1, Max Planck Institute for European Legal History Open Access Publication, 2013.

The abstract reads:

This article is a preliminary case study of legal and normative entanglement in Spanish West Florida—which stretched across the Gulf Coast of present-day Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida—between 1803-1810. Between the time of the Louisiana Purchase (1803) and the annexation of Westernmost part of West Florida by the United States (1810), the laws and norms of the Territory criss-crossed in various ways those of Spain and the United States. Indeed, the territory was, in turn, French, British, and Spanish before being annexed, in part, by the Americans. For the period under study here, and decades before, its settlers were largely Anglophone, while its laws were a variant of the Spanish colonial ius commune. West Florida had an especially close relationship with the area that would become the new American Territory of Orleans (1805), especially the city of New Orleans. Carved out of the vast Louisiana Territory purchased from France, the Territory of Orleans had its own complex history. Its population was still largely Francophone. In its first decade, its laws were already a gumbo of continental and Anglo-American ingredients. Together, the two territories sat at the precipice of the modern nation-state, of nationalism and popular sovereignty, of legal positivism and legal formalism. In both territories, the diffusion—direct and indirect, formal and informal, ongoing and sporadic—of the various laws and norms of natives and newcomers created intricate legal and normative hybrids.   

I'd welcome your thoughts and corrections.

CONFERENCE: Register for the XIXth European Forum of Young Legal Historians (15-18 May 2013, Ghent/Lille)

(image: de "Mammelokker", 18th century sculpture on the West side of the Ghent Belfry, relating the legend of a woman feeding her father in captivity in spite of an interdiction to smuggle food into the prison building; for more information click here)

The registration for this year's European Forum of Young Legal Historians ("(Wo)men in legal history"), which takes place in the Flemish capitals Ghent (Belgium) and Lille (France), is now open. This unique bicephal conference takes the participants by bus across the historically disputed Franco-Belgian border, in the footsteps of the armies of Philip IV the Fair, Louis XIV, Louis XV, the French Revolutionary Convention or Napoleon. This time, the organizers have done their utmost best to avoid any bloodshed, pillage or destruction, have eliminated toll posts on the Leie and Scheldt rivers and were dispensed from the obligation to conclude a treaty of contribution. The cities of Ghent and Lille, at the crossroads of Europe, have a remarkably rich historical past: the birthplaces of two statesmen of global reputation, Charles de Gaulle and Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, the foundation of the Nobel Prize-winning Institut de droit international, the conclusion of the Treaty of Ghent (1814) between Britain and the United States, and much more. The organizers warmly invite you to discover "Medieval Manhattan", the renowned Palais des Beaux-Arts, the Counts of Flanders' Castle in Ghent, Vauban's magistral citadel in Lille, or local gastronomy

As the sun never sets on the Empire of legal history, the organizers are delighted to welcome a diverse and impressive crowd of young academics. The conference's programme can be found here: 66 speakers from 20 different countries will address the male/female gender roles throughout all fields of legal history. 37 of them are women, 29 men. On 15 May 2013, prof. dr. Alain Wijffels (UCLouvain/Leiden/CNRS Dijon) will be the keynote speaker.

Registration on the UGent website (link). Passive attendants have until 19 April 2013 to register, speakers until 22 March 2013 (= one month from today on). Participants pay € 100, speakers € 80.

21 February 2013

BOOKS: Bell and Ibbetson on Comparative Studies in the Development of the Law of Torts in Europe

Cambridge University Press has published John Bell and David Ibbetson (eds), Comparative Studies in the Development of the Law of Torts in Europe:

This three-volume set contains the results of the second and final stage of an AHRC-funded project which aims to examine the nature of legal development in Western Europe since 1850, focusing on liability for fault. 

By bringing together experts with different disciplinary backgrounds – comparative lawyers and legal historians, all with an understanding of modern tort law in their own systems – and getting them to work collaboratively, the books produce a more nuanced comparative legal history and one which is theoretically better informed. 

Also available, the six-volume set containing the results of the first stage of this project.

Very highly recommended. SPD

CALL FOR PAPERS: The 250th Anniversary of Beccaria's "Dei delitti e delle pene" (Paris, 4-6 December 2014)

What: 250th Anniversary of Dei delitti e delle pene (Livorno, 1764), International Conference 

Where: Paris: École Normale Supérieure - Paris Université Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis (EA 4385, Laboratoire d’Études Romanes) Université Sorbonne Nouvelle - Paris 3 (CIRCE, Centre Interdisciplinaire de Recherche sur la Culture des Échanges, EA 3979 LECEMO) 

When: 4-6 December 2014

Submission deadline: 15 November 2013

Beccaria’s cultures

The aim of the conference is to look into the various “cultures” that nurtured Beccaria’s thought, and into the various “cultures” he tried to transform, enrich or question.
We’ve deliberately chosen the term “culture” for its scope and indeterminacy, as we hope to encourage open and many-sided reflections on the intellectual disciplines and on the fields of knowledge that stimulated Beccaria’s intellectual development, on the languages that structured his worldview, on the cultural and ideological traditions that shaped his ideas. We would also like to open a debate on the way Beccaria’s work, from Of Crimes and Punishments to his actions as a state official, bears witness to the ways disciplinary boundaries and areas of knowledge were constantly redefined, to the ways languages and traditions were questioned, and culture deeply renewed. The intellectual venture of the Caffè, which began in 1764, may also be food for thought and debate.
Nevertheless, we would like to define more specifically culture as any set of references, readings, problems, styles, methods, which tend to appear as a coherent and significant whole, as a shared area of debate and questioning. In that sense, an author can have numerous and shifting cultures, which sometimes overlap, according to the ways he defines the intellectual output that precedes or surrounds him.
We could then look into at least three related questions, which do not exclude other approaches or reflections: 
1. Can we get a precise overview of Beccaria’s education and readings and do they form a coherent whole? What was, according to him, the role in his intellectual development of legal culture, philosophical culture, economic culture and literary culture? Did he give a central role, in his education, to Italian culture, French culture, English culture or ancient culture? How can we assess the importance and the influence on his intellectual development of mathematical culture, medical culture or theological culture? All this also raises more specific questions: what were, for Beccaria, the roles of Protestant culture, the culture of natural rights, baroque culture, materialist or “radical” culture, republican culture? These are only general examples and the list isn’t closed. In the end, our goal is to examine the coherence, the order (as a hierarchy or as an architecture), the (harmonious or tense) relationships between the different “cultures” that, according to Beccaria, determined the intellectual landscape of the time.
2. How and why did Beccaria, intentionally or not, change the dividing lines and balances of power between these various cultures? How and why did his style and references, his vocabulary or lexicon act on the various conceptions of knowledge, of its objects, methods and boundaries, as well as on the order of precedence between intellectual disciplines? For him, what was the most appropriate “culture” for the exercise of power? After Of Crimes and Punishments, did he pursue or did he alter his project? Were his later works and his role as a state official animated by the same tension (or intention)?
3. The early reception of Beccaria’s work, which closely followed the first edition of Crimes and Punishments, opens a third area of study. Franco Venturi’s work on the first translation into French and Gianni Francioni’s work on Pietro Verri’s “revision” successfully demonstrated the increasing changes in the generic contours of Beccaria’s text, as it went from hand to hand. First conceived as a satire or as a moral and philosophical pamphlet, it was gradually turned into a short treatise on criminal law. Later interpreters followed suit, appropriating the text to use it as a tool for their own problems and projects. Not only did they read and understand it in different ways, they also redefined it in different ways by associating it to a variety of “cultures”. We suggest to arbitrarily place the terminus ad quem of the “early reception” round the Congress of Vienna. How was Beccaria’s work read and understood, from the late Enlightenment to the revolutions that mark the end of the century? In which ways, according to the interests and to the cultures of its interpreters, was it received and conceived?
The conference will welcome specialists in history, law, literature and philosophy, who will jointly examine the conflicts between different cultures – and not only between diverging ideas – as well as the stylistic and disciplinary redefinitions witnessed in Beccaria’s work and its early reception.

Abstracts in English, French or Italian (300-400 words) should be submitted, together with a short CV, to Philippe Audegean (, Christian Del Vento (, Pierre Musitelli ( and Xavier Tabet ( before 15 November 2013.

SEMINAR: Prof. Parise on How to Teach Legal History and more

What:  Coloquio de Historia del Derecho Historicidad del trasplante legal: experiencias decimonónicas inter e intra-continentales by Prof.  Agustín Parise (University of Maastricht)

Where: Facultad de Derecho, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Seminario IV)

When: 26 February 2013, 4:00 pm


What: Seminar on teaching methodology: ABP y desarrollo de habilidades de escritura académica en la enseñanza de la historia del derecho by prof. Agustín Parise 

Where: Facultad de Derecho, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Seminario IV)

When: 27 February 2013, 4:00 pm 

Organization: Mª Julia Solla
Coordinadora del Área de Historia del Derecho y de las Instituciones

Suggested readings:

1) C.H. van Rhee, J.A.J.M van der Meer, Teaching European Legal History at Maastricht University Netherlands, in How to Teach European Comparative Legal History. Workshop at the Faculty of Law, Lund University, 19-20 August 2009, ed. by Kjell A. Modéer and Per Nilsén, Lund 2011, 143-155. 

2) Agustín Parise,The 13 Steps of Successful Academic Legal Research, in "International Journal of Legal Information", 38.1 (2010), Article 4, Available at: 

3) Agustín Parise, Las revistas jurídicas en el ámbito universitario: foros de expresión y laboratorios de escritura, in "Academia. Revista sobre enseñanza del Derecho", 15 (2010), 123-132.  

19 February 2013

NOTICE: Giovanni Cassandro Award to Prof. Mario Ascheri

What: Premio Giovanni Cassandro (IV Edition) for legal historical studies to Prof. Mario Ascheri

Where: Aula Magna of the Dipartimento Jonico in Sistemi Giuridici ed Economici del Mediterraneo: società, ambiente, culture of the Università degli Studi di Bari Aldo Moro, Convento San Francesco, Via Duomo 259, Taranto 

When: 28 February 2013, 10:00 am

Prof. Mario Ascheri will deliver a lectio magistralis on "Costituzioni, codici e Grande Révolution: mito e realtà della discontinuità oggi". 

CALL FOR PAPERS: Annual Conference of the Law, Literature and the Humanities Association of Australasia (Canberra, 5-8 December 2013)

WhatAnnual Conference of the Law, Literature and the Humanities Association of Australasia
WhereThe Australian National University

Canberra, Australia 
When: 5-8 December 2013 
Deadline: 31 May 2013 

The annual conference of the Association invites scholarly and creative research from academics and graduate students working at the crossroads of law, justice, and culture, whether based in legal theory or in disciplines such as literature, art, film, music, history, continental philosophy, anthropology, psychoanalysis, visual culture, or cultural studies. Contributions may take a variety of forms from traditional academic papers to poster presentations, video, or other genres or media.

Contributors should provide a title and an abstract of 200 words or less, no later than 31 May 2013, by email sent to . 
Please include your name and the word Interpellations in the subject line

For more information on this year’s program, including on-line registration:

➢    check the web site

➢    or contact the Convenor, Professor Desmond Manderson      

18 February 2013

PhD-Workshop (French Association of Young Legal Historians) (Besançon, 28 May-2 June 2013)

The French Association of Young Legal Historians organizes a PhD-workshop on the Journées internationales d'histoire du droit in Besançon (France), 28 May-2 June 2013.

The session will be presided by a Professor. Contributions are strictly limited to 10 minutes. Proposals of up to 2000 characters, with an academic CV, are welcome on:

For more information, see the AFJHD's blog.

17 February 2013

BOOK: Kim on Law and Custom in Korea

A few days ago, the Legal History Blog noted that:

Cambridge University Press recently published Law and Custom in Korea: Comparative Legal History, by Marie Seong-Hak Kim (St. Cloud State University). A description from the Press:

This book sets forth the evolution of Korea's law and legal system from the Chosǒn dynasty through the colonial and postcolonial modern periods. This is the first book in English that comprehensively studies Korean legal history in comparison with European legal history, with particular emphasis on customary law. Korea's passage to Romano-German civil law under Japanese rule marked a drastic departure from its indigenous legal tradition. The transplantation of modern civil law in Korea was facilitated by Japanese colonial jurists who themselves created a Korean customary law; this constructed customary law served as an intermediary regime between tradition and the demands of modern law. The transformation of Korean law by the brisk forces of Westernization points to new interpretations of colonial history and it presents an intriguing case for investigating the spread of law on the global level. In-depth discussions of French customary law and Japanese legal history in this book provide a solid conceptual framework suitable for comparing European and East Asian legal traditions.

And a few blurbs:
"At first look, the title of the book gives readers an expectation of continuity in theme evolving in Korean customary law from premodern times to the present. It is, however, a saga in which Kim tells us of how the civil law tradition in France and Germany was transplanted to Japan and only a few decades later to its colony Korea, as Japanese rulers and judges saw that it fit the needs of efficient colonial management and Western jurisprudence's requirements of customary law. Kim's book provides us with sad but rich stories to explore from Korean civil law history." –Dai-Kwon Choi (Seoul National University)

"For too long, East Asia in general and Korea in particular has been treated as a backwater in comparative legal studies. Marie Kim's monumental contribution helps correct this state of affairs. With nuance and rigor, she uses the lens of custom to situate modern Korean law in a comparative context. A major advance not only for our understanding of modern Korea but also of colonial and postcolonial legality more broadly." – Tom Ginsburg (University of Chicago Law School)
Read on here.

Professor Kim is a member of the International Editorial Board of the ESCLH's Comparative Legal History.

15 February 2013

SEMINAR: Inquisition and the Jews (Rome, October 2012 - April 2013)

What: Seminar on: L'inquisizione e gli ebrei. Nuove ricerche
Where: Archivio della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede, Piazza del Sant'Ufficio 11 (Sala San Domenico), Roma
When: on Tuesdays at 4:30 pm, according to the seminar's schedule 

The seminar is organized by Dipartimento di storia, culture, religioni of the University La Sapienza, in collaboration with Archivio della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede and coordinated by Marina Caffiero and Vittorio Frajese. 

All information here 


Claudio Canonici (Sapienza - Università di Roma)
La giurisdizione inquisitoriale sugli ebrei dei vescovi del “territorio romano” in età moderna - 19 February 2013

Paolo Pellegrini (Sapienza - Università di Roma)
La filantropia degli ebrei italiani nell’Ottocento: funzioni e pratiche - 12 March 2013

Margherita Palumbo (Biblioteca Casanatense)
I “libri talmudici, cabalistici e nefandi” del Sant’Uffizio oggi in Biblioteca Casanatense - 9 April 2013

Raffaella Perin (Scuola Normale Superiore):
Pio XI e l'antisemitismo. La mancata lettera sugli ebrei a Mussolini dell'estate del 1938 - 7 May 2013

Cecilia Cristellon (Goethe Universität, Frankfurt am Main)
L’Inquisizione, la censura e la giurisdizione sul matrimonio degli ebrei (secc. XVII-XVIII) – 23 April 2013

CONFERENCE: Cesare Beccaria from Enlightenment until Today (Genève, 21-22 February 2013)

What: Colloque C. Beccaria "RECEPTION ET HERITAGE - Du temps des Lumières à aujourd'hui"

Where: Université de Genève

When: 21-22 February 2013 

For all information, click here

14 February 2013

CALL FOR PAPERS: Max Weber and China (SOAS, London, 5-6 September 2013)

What: Conference: Max Weber and China: Culture, Law and Capitalism
Where: SOAS, Russell Square: College Buildings. Room: Khalili Lecture Theatre, London 
When: 5-6 September 2013, 10:00 am

Deadline for submission:  31st March 2013

Max Weber is not only celebrated as a founder of modern social science but also for his view that modern capitalism was the achievement of a uniquely Western rationalism. His celebrated study of China argued that its legal institutions and ethical and religious culture had prevented a similar development there. But he also drew on his knowledge of China in developing his ideas of bureaucracy, authority and legitimacy.
The economic success of China over the last thirty years represents for some the biggest challenge yet to Weber's account of its culture, to his theory of capitalism and to the methods he employed in arriving at his account. But it also brings into question the self-image of the West and the idea of modernity. The conference we are announcing will bring scholars from the social sciences and humanities together in a West/East dialogue central both to mutual understanding between China and the West and also to an exploration of the possible varieties of capitalism.
All information here

SEMINARS: Citizenship and Power between Middle Ages and Modern Era (RomaTre University, Law Faculty, March-December 2013)

What: Seminar: "Regole di cittadinanza e strategie di potere tra Medioevo ed Età Moderna"

WhereFacoltà di Giurisprudenza - Università “Roma Tre” - Via Ostiense 161, Stanza 278, II piano

When: March-December 2013 

The seminar, which takes place within the framework of the PIMIC Project (Power and Institutions in Medieval Islam and Christendom), is organized by Sara Menzinger, Giuliano Milani and Massimo Vallerani 

Provisional Program
4 March 2013, h. 15.30
Cives prima della cittadinanza: percezioni di identità collettive urbane tra IX e XI secolo nell’Italia centro-settentrionale
Chris Wickham: l’XI secolo lombardo
Mario Ascheri: Privilegi per le città nella crisi post-carolingia

22 March 2013, h. 15.30
Cittadinanza politica nel Medioevo bizantino e islamico
Marco Di Branco: Cittadinanza e rivolte nel Medioevo bizantino
Patrick Lantschner: Civic revolts in Italian and Islamic cities between Late Middle Ages and Early Modern Times (14th-16th century)

19 April 2013, h. 15.30
Doveri fiscali e forme di appartenenza alla comunità cristiana e alla civitas
Michel Lauwers: La decima come simbolo di appartenenza alla comunità cristiana (titolo provvisorio)
Sara Menzinger: Pagare per appartenere: giustificazione teorica del prelievo tra XII e XIII secolo
Massimo Vallerani: Obblighi fiscali e livelli di cittadinanza nei comuni italiani

24 May 2013, h. 15.30
Esclusione dalla cittadinanza: forme di allontanamento materiale e perdita di diritti politici e civili
Giuliano Milani: forme di esclusione politica dalla civitas
Giacomo Todeschini: Forme di esclusione dalla comunità (titolo provvisorio)

21 June 2013, h. 15.30
Forme di diminuzione della cittadinanza
Antonia Fiori: infamia e purgatio nel pensiero ecclesiastico
Massimo Vallerani: fama e infamia nel mondo comunale
Caterina Bori: il ruolo della fama nel processo islamico (XIV sec.)

19-21? September 2013
Paolo Cammarosano: tema da definire

25 October 2013, h. 15,30
Forme di appartenenza alla civitas nell’Italia meridionale (XII-XVI sec.)
Vito Lorè
Serena Morelli           

22 November, h. 15.30
Costruzione di teorie di cittadinanza per il mondo coloniale
Enrica Rigo
Luigi Nuzzo

December 2013 (data da definire)
Cittadinanza politica in Dante
Justin Steinberg (l’opera): uso di regole ed eccezioni di cittadinanza nella Divina Commedia
Giuliano Milani (la biografia): la perdita di cittadinanza di Dante, da fiorentino di nascita a fiorentino politico

CONFERENCE: Legal Theory and Legal History at Queen Mary (12-13 April 2013)

What: Legal Theory and Legal History: A Neglected Dialogue? 2013 UK Branch of the IVR Annual Conference
WhereArts 2 Lecture Theatre, Queen Mary, University of London, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS
When: 12-13 April 2013, 9:00 am-5:00 pm 

The 2013 annual conference of the UK Branch of the IVR is designed to bring together legal theorists and legal historians (including historians of legal theory and political thought) in an attempt to facilitate and encourage dialogue between the two disciplines.
The keynote will be delivered by prof. Quentin Skinner:  The Concept of the State in Legal History and Theory

To read the program, click here
All information (registration is compulsory) here

JOURNAL: New Issue of the Law & History Review

Vol. 31.1 of the Law & History Review is now available. The following 3 articles can be freely accessed until February 28th 2013

Kristin A. Collins, Petitions Without Number: Widows' Petitions and the Early Nineteenth-Century Origins of Public Marriage-Based Entitlements 

Kimberley A. Reilly, Wronged in Her Dearest Rights: Plaintiff Wives and the Transformation of Marital Consortium, 1870-1920 

Alfred L. Brophy, Introducing Applied Legal History

Other articles in this issue: 

Roman J. Hoyos, "The People's Privilege: The Franking Privilege, Constituent Correspondence, and Political Representation in Mid-Nineteenth Century America"

Jeffery A. Jenkins and Justin Peck, "Building Toward Major Policy Change: Congressional Action on Civil Rights, 1941–1950"

Robert Tennyson, "From Unanimity to Proportionality: Assent Standards and the Parliamentary Enclosure Movement"

James Oldham and Su Jin Kim, "Arbitration in America: The Early History"

To read the articles, please click here

CALL FOR PAPERS: Conference on "Commerce, Corporations and the Law" (Princeton University, 27-28 September 2013)

What: Conference on Commerce, Corporations and the Law
Where: Princeton University (Dickinson Hall)
When: 27-28 September 2013

Deadline: March 1st 2013
The History Project, in cooperation with the History Department at Princeton University and the Joint Center for History and Economics, will hold its second conference on 27-28 September 2013 at Dickinson Hall, Princeton University. 
The conference will be concerned with cross-cultural trade, firms, and legal systems around the world. The History Project is supported by the Institute for New Economic Thinking, with the object of encouraging a new generation of historians of the economy and economic life.  The Organizing Committee welcomes proposals for papers from advanced undergraduates, graduate students and recent PhD recipients.  The deadline for submissions of proposals is March 1, 2013.
The conference will be able to contribute to travel and accommodation costs, and a small number of research grants will be available through the History Project; see
Jeremy AdelmanNikolas BowieHendrik HartogHarold JamesMelissa LaneJonathan LevyBhavani RamanEmma RothschildMelissa Texeira

Call for papers: We welcome proposals for papers from graduate students and recent PhD recipients in different disciplines, including economics, economic history, the history of economic thought, legal history, political theory, and the history of science. The conference will be concerned with cross-cultural trade, firms, and legal systems around the world.

The conference will be able to contribute to travel and accommodation costs, and a small number of research grants will be available through the History Project; see
Proposals should be uploaded to the conference website. 
For more information, please email

CONFERENCES: The images of Justice

What: Jean-Jacques Yvorel on La mise en images du débat sur la justice des mineurs (1880-1912), within the framework of the Series of Conferences on "La Justice en images et caricaturée"
Where: University of Lille 2, Faculté de droit - Salle Guy Debeyre
When: 15 February 2013, 10:30 am

Mme Sophie Deroubaix or Mme Sabrina Michel or
Tel. :

All information here

BOOK: The West Indies between the 16th and the 18th Century

Óscar Mazín y José Javier Ruiz Ibáñez (eds.), Las Indias Occidentales. Procesos de incorporación territorial a las Monarquías Ibéricas, México, El Colegio de México, 2013

For more information click here

08 February 2013

FELLOWSHIPS: Doctoral or post-doctoral research positions in the history of medieval law (MSH, Nantes)

The Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Ange Guépin (MSH, Nantes, France) is recruiting post-doctoral researchers for work on the project “RELMIN: The legal status of religious minorities in the Euro-Mediterranean world (5th-16th centuries)”. RELMIN is based at the MSH and is directed by John Tolan, professor of history at the University of Nantes. It is funded for five years (2010-2015) as part of the Ideas programme of the European Research Council’s Seventh Framework Programme.
Deadline: May 1st 2013

Project summary
European religious diversity has its roots in the practice of medieval societies. Medieval European polities, Christian and Muslim, granted protected and inferior status to selected religious minorities. RELMIN collects, publishes and studies legal texts defining the status of religious minorities in pre-modern Europe. The corpus of texts includes Roman law (in particular in the legal codes of Theodosius and Justinian), canon law (acta of Church councils, the Decretum attributed to Gratian, the Decretales), national or royal law (from “barbarian” law codes of the early Middle Ages to national compilations such as the Siete Partidas of Alfonso X of Castile in the thirteenth century), urban law (particularly the fueros in the Iberian peninsula and hisba manuals in Andalusia), rabbinical responsa, and fatwa collections. The database will contain texts in their original languages and translations into English and French, as well as an annotated bibliography on the subject. This will become a major reference tool for research in the history of minority law and of interreligious relations. Candidates should consult and familiarize themselves with the pilot edition of the database:

The project also holds semi-annual workshops and is planning a major international conference on Religious diversity in pre-modern Europe. A series of comparative thematic studies on specific aspects of interreligious relations will allow us to compare responses to similar issues in diverse societies, from seventh-century Córdoba to fifteenth-century Krakow. The goal is to encourage collaborative interdisciplinary work by scholars from different countries with varying linguistic skills, to encourage new innovative research that cuts across traditional divides. The project will publish major works in the field: the proceedings of the various conferences and workshops, a sourcebook of selected legal texts (with translations, commentaries and annotated bibliography), and a monograph on the legal status of minorities in pre-modern Europe.

Applications are accepted at two levels: doctoral and postdoctoral. Doctoral candidates should be currently enrolled in a doctoral program; their thesis subjects should be related to the themes of RELMIN. Each postdoctoral candidate should have a recent PhD in history, law, language, religion or literature, with a specialisation related to the themes of RELMIN. She or he should have a high level of competence in several medieval languages and should have experience editing documents in at least one of the languages. We welcome applicants of all nationalities. Since the project’s working languages are English and French, researchers should be conversant in both (or at least in one, with some comprehension of the second).

Responsibilities of the researchers
Doctoral and post-doctoral researchers will be part of a research team based inNantes. Their primary responsibilities will be editing the project database and participating in the organization of the semi-annual workshops. Each researcher will be given a specific thematic area corresponding to his/her particular expertise. In this area his/her tasks will include:

Bibliographical research
  • Identifying medieval legal texts to include in the database
  • Identifying important secondary scholarship in the field and providing bibliographical notices for the database
Database management
  • Writing and editing entries on specific medieval texts
  • Identifying specialists in the field and inviting them to contribute to the database
Participating in regular team meetings (including periodic seminars and workshops)

Conditions of employment
Each of the researchers will be hired on a non-renewable contract (French CDD: contrat à durée déterminée). The date of the beginning of the contract will be negotiated on hiring: it will be no earlier than September 1st 2013 and no later than April 1st 2014. Each researcher will be expected to reside in Nantes for the period of employment and will be provided with office space at the MSH. 
Three types of positions may be open:

1. Post-doctoral researcher on a one-year contract (candidate must have a doctoral degree).
2. “Visiting” post-doctoral researcher on a one- to three-month contract (candidate must have a doctoral degree). Please specify the desired length of contract in the letter of application.
3.  “Visiting” post-doctoral researcher on a one- to three-month contract (candidate must be registered in a doctoral program). Please specify the desired length of contract in the letter of application.

Application procedures
Applicants should send an application, consisting of a letter of application, a clearly-presented list of sources that they propose to work on for RELMIN, a curriculum vitae, and three letters of reference. In the application letter, the candidate should indicate preferred periods of employment. All documents should be sent in PDF format to by May 1st, 2013.

Contact and information
Maison des Sciences de l'Homme Ange Guépin
5 Allée Jacques Berque
BP 12105
44021 Nantes cedex 1