December 11, 2017

Call For Applications: Jerome Hall Postdoctoral Fellowship, Center for Law, Society, & Culture, and Indiana University, School of Law

From the mailbox:
Jerome Hall Postdoctoral Fellowship
The Center for Law, Society & Culture and the Indiana University Maurer School of Law invite applications from scholars of law, the humanities, or social sciences working in the field of sociolegal studies for the Jerome Hall Postdoctoral Fellowship.
The fellow will devote substantial time to research and writing in furtherance of a major scholarly project and will participate in the activities of the Center, which include an annual symposium, a colloquia series, and regular workshops and lectures. The fellowship provides a salary plus a research allowance, health insurance, other benefits, and workspace at the School of Law. If both sides are amenable, the option of teaching a research seminar is also possible, with a commensurate adjustment to the salary. The term of the appointment will be 24 months, beginning August 1, 2018.
In evaluating applications, the Center will focus on: 1) The originality and significance of the candidate’s proposed research project within the field of sociolegal studies; 2) the candidate’s scholarly promise, achievements, and ability to complete the project; and 3) the potential contribution of the candidate to the intellectual life of the Center, the School of Law, and Indiana University.
Scholars of law, the humanities, or social sciences working in the field of sociolegal studies. Pre-tenure scholars, recently awarded PhDs, and those with equivalent professional degrees are encouraged to apply. Advanced graduate students may also apply, but evidence of completion of the doctoral degree or its equivalent is required before beginning the fellowship.
Questions regarding the position or application process can be directed to Professor Victor Quintanilla, IU Maurer School of Law 211 S. Indiana Ave., Bloomington, IN 47405 or

Stajnphiler on Plagiarism and Power Relations in Legal Academia and Legal Education @IISJOnati

Tilen Stajnphiler, University of Ljubljana, is publishing On Plagiarism and Power Relations in Legal Academia and Legal Education in volume 7, no. 8, of Oñati Socio-Legal Series (2017). Here is the abstract.
English Abstract: The article challenges the misconception that legal academia is a harmonious community without internal discrepancies, characterised by common interests, a coherent set of values and standards of behaviour that are unilaterally transposed into the legal profession through the process of legal education. The paper focuses on a case study of a public dispute between two law professors initiated by an article published in one of the main national law magazines wherein one accused the other of plagiarism. Even though the dispute did not come to an unequivocal conclusion, it deserves a closer examination as it clearly exposed two important issues. Firstly, it revealed certain unresolved issues concerning legal writing and legal ethics that are essential elements of the legal profession, as they have a profound impact on legal education and legal practice, and, secondly, it showed that these divergences are at least to some extent related to the latent network of power relations and struggles that dominate the legal (academic) field.
Spanish Abstract: Este artículo cuestiona la creencia de que el mundo jurídico-académico es una comunidad armoniosa sin discrepancias internas, caracterizada por intereses comunes, valores coherentes y parámetros de comportamiento que se transponen de forma unilateral al ejercicio de la profesión jurídica a través de la educación en Derecho. El artículo se centra en el estudio de una disputa entre dos profesores de Derecho, en la cual uno acusaba al otro de plagio. A pesar de que la disputa no se resolvió de forma clara, merece un análisis más cuidadoso, ya que puso de manifiesto dos temas importantes: en primer lugar, algunos conflictos sin resolver sobre la escritura y la ética del derecho que son elementos esenciales de la profesión jurídica, pues tienen un profundo impacto sobre la educación y la práctica del Derecho; y, en segundo lugar, que estos desacuerdos están relacionados con las redes latentes de poder que dominan el campo jurídico-académico.

Download the article from SSRN at the link. 

Annual Meeting of the Alabama Political Science Association CFP

From the mailbox:
Annual Meeting of the Alabama Political Science Association
Call for Papers, Panels, and Moderators March 16-17, 2018 – University of South Alabama Campus
The Alabama Political Science Association (ALaPSA) is looking for professors, graduate, and undergraduate students in all areas of political science and related fields to contribute to our annual statewide conference in beautiful Mobile in March 2018. Participants representing other disciplines related to politics, and participants from outside Alabama, are welcome!
1. Propose a research paper for delivery at an AlaPSA panel (professors and graduate students): Submit a brief proposal at the hyperlink listed below. Papers on all political topics are welcome, and, if accepted, will be placed on topic-appropriate panels. Please indicate if you are a graduate student.
2. Propose a paper for delivery at an undergraduate student panel: Submit a brief proposal at the hyperlink listed below. Papers will be placed on special undergraduates-only panels with a faculty or graduate student moderator. Papers involving original research are preferred, but insightful, well-written and substantial literature reviews or essays will be considered.
3. Propose “pre-fabricated” complete faculty, graduate, or undergraduate, student panels: If you and some colleagues would like to pre-arrange an entire panel (i.e. you supply the topic, moderator, and research presenters), we’ll supply the room and an audience. Submit your general panel theme and brief proposals or summaries of the component papers (as well as complete contact information for all proposed participants) at the hyperlink listed below.
4. Propose “roundtables” offering academic expertise on scholarly and practical problems and issues (faculty): We welcome the opportunity for groups of more senior experts on particular topics to share their collective wisdom in a less structured, more speculative, and more wide-ranging way. If you would like to suggest an idea for such a scholarly roundtable, and/or offer to participate in one, please submit your suggestions at the hyperlink listed below. 5. Offering service as a panel moderator and/or roundtable participant (faculty and graduate students): As with all academic conferences, we need people to facilitate the panels and offer comments and suggestions on the papers presented. If you would enjoy doing this, submit a request at the hyperlink listed below.
The following link will take you to the conference registration website:
If this is your first time to the website, you will need to register. Once you have registered, you will be able to submit your proposal. Please add the appropriate tags to your proposal. Tags include the topic area as well as any special information about the proposal, i.e., whether it is a graduate or undergraduate panel, or whether you are proposing a roundtable or to be a moderator.
There will be a place to upload your paper. You will not need to upload the paper until closer to the actual time of the conference. Once a proposal is submitted, you will receive notification of whether your proposal was accepted.
As we approach the submission deadline, accepted proposals will be organized into panels and you will receive notification of your panel assignment. Those submitting paper proposals will receive information on how to pay for the conference registration in their acceptance emails. Additional information on paying for conference registration will be sent to others in a later email.
If you have any questions please contact: Jaclyn Bunch, ALaPSA Program Chair Department of Political Science and Criminal Justice University of South Alabama Mobile, AL 36688
E-mail: Tel: (251) 460-7852 Fax: (251) 460-6567 APPLICATION DEADLINE: January 5, 2018

December 10, 2017

ICYMI: Pritikin on Whether Law and Literature Can Be Practical @concordlaw

ICYMI: Martin H. Pritikin, Concord Law School, has published Can Law and Literature Be Practical? The Crucible and the Federal Rules of Evidence at 115 West Virginia Law Review 687 (2012).
Counter-intuitively, one of the best ways to learn the practice-oriented topic of evidence may be by studying a work of fiction — specifically, Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, which dramatizes the 17th century Salem witch trials. The play puts the reader in the position of legal advocate, and invites strategic analysis of evidentiary issues. A close analysis of the dialogue presents an opportunity to explore both the doctrinal nuances of and policy considerations underlying the most important topics covered by the Federal Rules of Evidence, including relevance, character evidence and impeachment, opinion testimony, hearsay, and the mode and order of interrogation.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

December 7, 2017

Niezen on Street Justice: Graffiti and Claims-Making in Urban Public Space @mcgillu @LAWMcGill

Ronald Niezen, McGill University Faculty of Law, has published Street Justice: Graffiti and Claims-Making in Urban Public Space. Here is the abstract.
It is getting increasingly difficult to avoid the notion that justice claims are not limited to the formal venues of law or even the public accountability processes of journalism, but are also expressed in everyday activities of public outreach. We can see this outreach in informal efforts toward mass communication, in graffiti and Internet communication (and connections between the two, as we will see) oriented toward passers by and browsers, consumers of information, the possible-to-convince sympathizers of the plights of others. This non-professional realm of justice claims tells us something about the extent to which justice is experienced and expressed outside the law, but at the same time through the influence of law. Human rights in particular can be seen as a source of inspiration and expression of new and emerging forms of rights-consciousness and the public expression of grievance. This consciousness, in turn, relates to the popular dynamics of human rights lobbying and a corresponding awareness of humanity as a reference point for what is fair, equitable, and honorable, grounded as they are in the “soft” processes of persuasion and mass influence.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Tomlins on A Poetics for Spatial Justice: Materialism and Legal Historiography, from Bachelard to Benjmin

Christopher Tomlins, University of California, Berkeley, Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program, is publishing A Poetics for Spatial Justice: Materialism and Legal Historiography, from Bachelard to Benjamin in the Oxford Handbook of Law and Humanities (forthcoming). Here is the abstract.
As the linguistic/cultural turn of the last forty years has begun to ebb, socio-legal and legal-humanist scholarship has seen an accelerating return to materiality. This paper asks what relationship may be forthcoming between the “new materialisms” and “vibrant matter” of recent years, and older materialisms – both historical and literary, both Marxist and non-Marxist – that held sway prior to post-structuralism? What impact might such a relationship have on the forms, notably “spatial justice,” that materiality is assuming in current legal studies? To attempt answers, the paper turns to two figures from more than half a century ago: Gaston Bachelard – once famous, now mostly forgotten; and Walter Benjamin – once largely forgotten, now famous. A prolific and much-admired writer between 1930 and 1960, Bachelard pursued two trajectories of inquiry: a dialectical and materialist and historical (but non-Marxist) philosophy of science; and a poetics of the material imagination based on inquiry into the literary reception and representation of the prime elements – earth, water, fire, and air. Between the late 1920s and 1940, meanwhile, Benjamin developed an idiosyncratic but potent form of historical materialism dedicated to “arousing [the world] from its dream of itself.” The paper argues that by mobilizing Bachelard and Benjamin for scholarship at the intersection of law and the humanities, old and new materialisms can be brought into a satisfying conjunction that simultaneously offers a poetics for spatial justice and lays a foundation for a materialist legal historiography for the twenty-first century.
Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

December 6, 2017

Kjaer on Claim-Making and Parallel Universes: Legal Pluralism From Church and Empire to Statehood and the European Union @Poul_Kjaer

Poul F. Kjaer, Copenhagen Business School, has published Claim-Making and Parallel Universes: Legal Pluralism from Church and Empire to Statehood and the European Union. Here is the abstract.
When Neil MacCormick, in the wake of the launch of the Maastricht Treaty on European Union, went “beyond the Sovereign State” in 1993, he fundamentally challenged the heretofore dominant paradigm of legal ordering in the European context which considered law to be singular, unified and confined within sovereign nation states. The original insight of MacCormick might, however, be pushed even further, as a historical re-construction reveals that legal pluralism is not only a trademark of recent historical times, marked by the European integration process, but has also been at the very core of legal evolution in Europe throughout its modern history. The introduction of modern law in Europe can be traced back to the eleventh and twelfth century Investiture Conflict between the Church and the Emperor, a conflict which solidified the existence of two parallel universes of law, one Church-based and one empire-based, both of which rested, in principle, upon mutually exclusive claims to superiority, but which nonetheless became institutionally stabilized in a manner which allowed for mutual co-existence between them. The existence of such parallel universes of law has throughout, also in the “Westphalian world”, been a central characteristic of European law. It is suggested that the current constellation between the EU and its Member States should be viewed in this light.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Fitzgibbon on the Promotion of Personhood as a Principal Good of Law

Scott Thomas Fitzgibbon, Boston College Law School, has published The Promotion of Personhood is a Principal Good of Law. Here is the abstract.
A great good promoted by a well constructed legal system is the protection and promotion of character. Many other purposes prove to be justifiable, if at all, based on their instrumentality to this good. When guided by this thesis, jurisprudence brings the discussion of law – what law is and what law ought to be – into constant conversation with anthropology: the perennial inquiry which our species conducts into the nature of the person.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

December 5, 2017

David Armitage's New Book, Civil Wars: A History in Ideas @DavidRArmitage @maksdelmar

ICYMI: David Armitage, Department of History, Harvard University, has published Civil Wars: A History in Ideas (Yale University Press, 2017). Here from the publisher's website is a description of the book's contents.
We think we know civil war when we see it. Yet ideas of what it is, and isn't, have a long and contested history. Defining the term is acutely political, for ideas about what makes a war "civil" often depend on whether one is ruler or rebel, victor or vanquished, sufferer or outsider; it can also shape a conflict’s outcome, determining whether external powers are involved or stand aside. From the American Revolution to the Iraq war, pivotal decisions have hung on such shifts of perspective. The West’s age of civil war may be over, but elsewhere it has exploded – from the Balkans to Rwanda, Burundi, Somalia, Sri Lanka and, most recently, Syria. And the language of civil war has burgeoned as democratic politics has become more violently fought. This book's unique perspective on the roots, dynamics and shaping force of civil war will be essential to our ongoing struggles with this seemingly interminable problem.

 Civil Wars: A History in Ideas

Kendall on Magna Carta: An Old Curiosity, a Mere Social Fact, or a Modern Constitutive and Substantive Part of American Law? @JMLSChicago

Walter J. Kendall, John Marshall Law School, has published Magna Carta - An Old Curiosity, A Mere Social Fact, or a Modern Constitutive and Substantive Part of American Law? Here is the abstract.
Magna Carta an argument: both the beginning of and continuing vital part of Anglo-American law.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Cuéllar on Three Pivotal Transitions in American Law and Society Since 1886

Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, Stanford Law School; Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, is publishing Adaptation Nation: Three Pivotal Transitions in American Law & Society Since 1886 in volume 70 of the Oklahoma Law Review. Here is the abstract.
Drawing on perspectives from administrative law as well as the study of law and development, this article analyzes three important transitions in American law and society since the Chicago Haymarket Square Riot of 1886. First, between the Haymarket Square Riot and 1950, the United States made great strides in the use and capacity of its institutions. At the outset, Americans lived in what could be reasonably described as a developing country constrained by violent labor conflicts, fragile institutions, and economic uncertainty. By the end of this period the United States was a preeminent global power making routine use of courts and agencies to resolve societal disputes. Second, in the latter half of the twentieth century and the early twenty-first century, Americans saw their country experience major demographic changes arising from the United States' distinctive approach to immigration. To implement its distinctive approach to mass immigration following the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act amendments, the United States relied on elaborate mechanism for administrative adjudication and enforcement on a massive scale, as well as a more decentralized mechanism of regionally-based integration that could further both social cohesion and geopolitical aims. And third, the United States now faces emerging governance and regulatory challenges as technological developments involving networked computers and so-called “artificial intelligence” increasingly affect society and the nature of work. Once associated with the public contracting infrastructure used to support defense-related research and development, this transition is now catalyzing interest in regulatory and liability-related frameworks to govern the division of responsibility between human decision-makers and machine intelligence. I reflect on some of the similarities and differences associated with these transitions. I place them in the context of related legal developments, and assess what they reveal about the United States’ historical legacies and arrangements for pluralist governance. Ultimately, an understanding of these transitions provides not only indispensable context for the United States’ early twenty-first century institutional dilemmas, but also an appreciation of how a pivotal geopolitical power adapted to forge –– however imperfectly –– legal arrangements incorporating norms of non-arbitrariness in different settings where law affects development.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

David on Love, Law, and the Judeo-Christian Separation-Individuation

Joseph E. David, Sapir Academic College School of Law, has published Love, Law and the Judeo-Christian Separation-Individuation. Here is the abstract.
Borrowed from a psychological theory, the principle of ‘separation-individuation’ refers to a developmental phase in which a subject develops sense of differentiation from her past or present origins and sense of autonomous selfhood and independency. The article suggests viewing the typology of anomist and legalist religions not as a consistent phenomenology but rather in relation to the above principle and the need to differentiate and create a religious self-identification.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

December 4, 2017

Robinson on More Reasons Why Jurisprudence Is Not Legal Philosophy @otago

Michael Spencer Robertson, Faculty of Law, University of Otago, has published More Reasons Why Jurisprudence is Not Legal Philosophy at 30 Ratio Juris 403 (2017). Here is the abstract.
It is generally assumed, without argument, that legal theory, legal philosophy, philosophy of law, and jurisprudence all mean the same thing. This paper rejects that assumption, and in particular the assumption that jurisprudence is the same thing as legal philosophy. This assumption has recently been challenged by Roger Cotterrell in his article “Why Jurisprudence Is Not Legal Philosophy,” and I seek to build on his arguments by adding insights found in the work of Stanley Fish.
The full text is not available from SSRN. Download from Ratio Juris here.

December 3, 2017

Professor Marianne Constable To Give Lecture on Law, Literature, and Repetition at the University of Wollongong, December 7, 2017

Professor Marianne Constable, University of California, Berkeley, is giving a seminar on Subversive Legacies: Law, Literature, and Repetition, on December 7, at the University of Woollongong. More here.

December 1, 2017

Ortuoste on Literature, Society, and Law: A Three-Sided Mirror: The Basque Case

Lorena Ortuoste, Independent, is publishing Literature, Society and Law: A Three-Sided Mirror. The Basque Case. How Contemporary Literature Reflects Identity, Conflict and Memory in the 'Spanish' Basque Country: A Tridimensional Mirror in volume 7 of Oñati Socio-Legal Series (2017). Here is the abstract (in English and Spanish).
English Abstract: The aim in this thesis is to show how the Basque-culture identity struggles are reflected within the Basque literature and how their actions, behaviour, traditions, culture, memory, language, etcetera, define them as a community or minority. In order to show the reflection of the law in five chosen novels written in Basque, firstly I will try to explain the link between law and literature, and afterwards, a double analytical construction will take place: on the first hand, a descriptive and historical explanation to provide the audience with the meaning of the three basic concepts which constitute the Basque culture -identity, conflict and memory-, and with a socio-historical context; on the second hand, this analysis will be based on the content analysis of the five novels that have been chosen, and contextualized or in relation to the period that goes from the Civil War (1936-1939) to the post-war and nowadays, with special insistences in the decade of the 1980s and 1990s.

Spanish Abstract: El objetivo de esta tesis es mostrar cómo los conflictos identitarios de la cultura vasca se reflejan en la literatura, y cómo sus acciones, comportamiento, tradiciones, cultura, memoria, lengua, etc., lo definen como comunidad o minoría. Para mostrar la manera en que se refleja lo jurídico en cinco novelas seleccionadas escritas en lengua vasca, primero intentaré explicar la relación entre derecho y literatura, y después, llevaré a cabo una doble construcción analítica: de un lado, una explicación descriptiva e histórica, para proporcionar tanto un significado de los tres conceptos básicos que constituyen la cultura vasca -identidad, conflicto y memoria- como un contexto sociohistórico; y, por otro lado, este análisis se basa en el análisis de contenido de las cinco novelas seleccionadas y contextualizadas en, o en relación con el período entre la Guerra civil (1936-1939) y posguerra, y la actualidad, con especial insistencia en la década de los 80 y los 90.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

Henderson on Daredevil: Legal (and Moral?) Vigilante @UofOklahomaLaw

Stephen E. Henderson, Unviversity of Oklahoma College of Law, is publishing Daredevil: Legal (and Moral?) Vigilante in volume 15 of the Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law (2017). Here is the abstract.
In 1964, the comic world was introduced to its first physically disabled practicing attorney: Matt Murdock. Initially a proud graduate of “State College” and later more impressively pedigreed as a graduate of either Columbia or Harvard Law, Murdock supplemented his day job as attorney with a side of vigilante justice as Daredevil. In 2003, Murdock became the only attorney superhero to appear as the title character in a movie. A truly awful movie, yes, but a movie all the same. And then in 2015, thanks to the talents of Drew Goddard, Murdock became the star of a terrific television series. But while it makes for good comics and television, does it make for good law? Good policy? Is there such a thing as moral vigilantism, and, if so, is Matt Murdock a moral vigilante? What of his foil, the Punisher, or the police officer who comes around to assisting Daredevil’s endeavors? I propose preliminary answers to these questions, including considering vigilantism as theorized by Paul and Sarah Robinson, Les Johnston, and Travis Dumsday. Their metrics are helpful and illuminating, but not, I think, a fully satisfying articulation of what constitutes moral vigilantism. And if we cannot adequately discern moral vigilantism in fictional characters, we will fare no better in the real world. There remains more good work to be done—and more good comics to be written.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.