Second panel session
Panel 1: Law, Totalitarianism and the Modern World
Co-convenors: Dr Stephen Skinner (University of Exeter), Dr Cosmin Cercel (University of Nottingham)
Speakers: Dr Stephen Skinner (University of Exeter), Dr Cosmin Cercel (University of Nottingham), Prof. David Fraser
(University of Nottingham), Dr Simon Lavis (Open University)
This panel aims to provide the basis for a discussion of the particular ways in which law was instrumentalised so as to buttress national identity and security under the specific conditions of authoritarian and totalitarian regimes during the 20th century. While focusing on the cases of Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and authoritarian Romania, we seek to consider the ways in which law was used by these regimes and played an effective part in structuring their pretences to legitimacy. Accordingly we aim to investigate, through comparative legal history, intellectual history and legal theory the relation between law as a normative order and the overarching ideological framework of authoritarian regimes, with regard to other contemporaneous legal systems as well as law’s participation in political projects of total domination.
In this way we intend to examine an often overlooked aspect of both legal history and the history of totalitarianism, and to inquire into the place of legal knowledge and legal practices within the structures of the modern. We intend to do this by exploring the technical legal, political and philosophical construction of core concepts underpinning state practices such as sovereignty, security, legality and crime. Subsequently, as a matter of theoretical engagement with the past, our aim is to reflect on these historical experiences and their significance for present ongoing debates relating to law and democracy.
Stephen Skinner (S.J.Skinner@exeter.ac.uk) is a Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Exeter, UK. His research interests include comparative criminal law and legal history, focusing on Italian Fascism and contemporaneous democratic systems in the interwar period; legal theory; and human rights law. He is currently working on a monograph on the use of lethal force in policing operations under the European Convention on Human Rights. On 10th-11th September 2015 he convened a workshop on ‘Anti-Democratic Ideology and Criminal Law under Fascist, National-Socialist and Authoritarian Regimes’ at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London. He has been a member of the ESCLH since 2010, has presented papers at each of its conferences and convened a conference stream of four panels on ‘Fascist Criminal Law’ at the 2012 Amsterdam conference. His publications include an edited collection, Fascism and Criminal Law: History, Theory, Continuity (Hart, Oxford, 2015); ‘Fascist by Name, Fascist by Nature? The 1930 Italian Penal Code in Academic Commentary, 1928-1946’ in that collection, pp.59-84; ‘Crimes Against the State and the Intersection of Fascism and Democracy in the Interwar Period: Vilification, Seditious Libel and the Limits of Legality’, (2016) Oxford Journal of Legal Studies (forthcoming); ‘Violence in Fascist Criminal Law Discourse: War, Repression and Anti-Democracy’, (2013) 26.2 International Journal for the Semiotics of Law 439-458; ‘Tainted Law? The Italian Penal Code, Fascism and Democracy’, (2011) 7.4 International Journal of Law in Context 423-446.
Dr Stephen Skinner
University of Exeter
Dr Cosmin Sebastian Cercel
University of Nottingham
Prof. David Fraser
University of Nottingham
Cosmin Cercel (Cosmin.Cercel@nottingham.ac.uk) is currently an Assistant Professor in Law at the University of Nottingham, UK. Dr Cercel's current research aims at putting under critical scrutiny the dissolution of classical concepts of legality and constitutionalism in the historical context of the rise of authoritarianism during the interwar period with specific reference to Romanian and continental history and legal thought. Dr Cercel has presented his research at numerous international conferences. Recent publications include: ‘The Enemy Within: Criminal Law and Ideology in Interwar Romania’ in S. Skinner (ed) Fascism and Criminal Law: History, Theory, Continuity (Hart, 2015) pp.101-126; ‘The Other Otherwise: Law, Historical Trauma and the Severed Gardens of Justice’ (2014) 8.2 Pólemos: Journal of Law, Literature and Culture pp.275-294; ‘The Right Side of the Law: State of Siege and the Rise of Fascism in Interwar Romania’ (2013) 2.2 Fascism: Journal of Comparative Fascist Studies pp.205-233; ‘Narrating Dystopia: Nicolae Ceausescu’s Legal Career’ (2011) 6.2 Journal of Comparative Law pp.1-22.
David Fraser (firstname.lastname@example.org) is Professor of Law and Social Theory at the University of Nottingham, UK. His research focuses on various theoretical and legal historical aspects of National Socialism, collaborationist regimes, and the Shoah. His publications include: ‘Jews or Germans? Nationality Legislation and the Restoration of Liberal Democracy in Western Europe after the Holocaust’, (with Frank Caestecker), 31 Law & History Review (2013), 391-422 (Awarded the Surrency Prize 2014 by the ASLH-Best article published in Law & History Review in the previous year); ‘Evil Law, Evil Lawyers?: From the Justice Case to the Torture Memos’, 3 Jurisprudence 391-428, (2012); ‘Shadows of Law, Shadows of the Shoah: Towards a Legal History of the Nazi Killing Machine’, 32 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 401-19, (2012); Daviborshch’s Cart: Narrating the Holocaust in Australian War Crimes Trials, (Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press, 2010); The Fragility of Law: Constitutional Patriotism and the Jews of Belgium, 1940-1945, (Abingdon, Oxford and New York: Routledge, 2009). (Winner of the Hart Socio-Legal Book Prize, 2010, awarded for the most outstanding piece of socio-legal scholarship); ‘Law’s ‘Jewish Question’? The Holocaust and Critical Theory’, 72 Modern Law Review 844-866, (2009); ‘The Extraterritorial Application of the Nuremberg Laws: Rassenschande and "Mixed" Marriages in European Liberal Democracies’, (with Frank Caestecker), 10 Journal of the History of International Law 35-81, (2008); Law After Auschwitz: Towards A Jurisprudence of the Holocaust, (Durham: Carolina Academic Press, 2005).
Simon Lavis (email@example.com) is a Lecturer in Law, the Open University, UK. He holds degrees in history and law from the Universities of Sheffield and Birmingham, the College of Law, Guildford, and is also a qualified solicitor. His primary research interests are legal history and legal theory in relation to Nazi Germany; specifically the history of Nazi Germany, the law of Nazi Germany and the relevance of Nazi law for contemporary legal theory. He has recently completed a PhD on this subject at the University of Nottingham (2015) supervised by Professor David Fraser, entitled ‘The Conundrum of Nazi Law: An Historiographical Challenge to the Jurisprudential representation of the Nazi Past.’ He is in the process of preparing articles for publication from that thesis. He has recently presented his research at various international conferences, including the Critical Legal Conference 2013: 'Reconciliation and Reconstruction', Queen's University Belfast, 5-7 September 2013; 1st International Workshop on Law and Ideology, University of Wroclaw, Poland, 29-30 May 2014; second annual conference of the British Association for Holocaust Studies (BAHS), University of Birmingham, 21-22 July 2015; Critical Legal Conference 2015: ‘Law, Space and the Political’, University of Wroclaw, Poland, 3-5 September 2015; and ‘Anti-Democratic Ideology and Criminal Law under Fascist, National Socialist and Authoritarian Regimes’, Conference at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London, 10-11 September 2015.
Dr Simon Lavis
Panel 2: Vectors of Legal Cultures and Identities? Legal Periodicals in Belgium, Estonia and France
Chair: Dr Sebastiaan Vandenbogaerde (Ghent University)
Speakers: Dr Sebastiaan Vandenbogaerde (Ghent University), Prof. Florence Renucci & Ing. Isabelle Thiebau (University of Lille),
Dr Merike Ristikivi (University of Tartu), Ms Pascaline le Polain & Prof. Nathalie Tousignant (University Saint-Louis in Brusselles)
Today, periodical studies are blooming in literature and historical disciplines. Research on legal periodicals (reviews and journals will be used as synonyms here) has been, in comparison to their literary counterparts, rather neglected. Legal historians tend to see law reviews only as a source and not as an object of study. However, legal periodicals are inspiring and rewarding to document and reconstruct legal cultures and to sketch professional networks supporting the review, as a material component.
Until now, research on law journals in Europe was a patchwork of case studies mostly based on a very small selection of titles. Only a handful of national studies embedded legal journals into a wider national and historical context. So far, there are case studies on Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Poland and Belgium. Remarkably, all illustrate how legal periodicals played their part in constructing a national entity, identity and legal culture. Several editorial boards explicitly intended to contribute to national law, influencing national legislators and politics and profiling themselves as cornerstones of national legal cultures.
Therefore, this panel launches a new concept in seeing legal periodicals as vectors of legal cultures and identities as they play an active role in spreading ideas on law in both national and international settings. In other words, they shape and determine a justice system. Since law – in the broadest sense of the word – is primordial to create and maintain order in a nation or an empire (even if challenged and opposed to), legal periodicals can be seen as vectors of nations and empires, hence creating legal cultures and identities. Moreover, editors often found inspiration abroad, thus, in a way, legal periodicals are related to each other even beyond national borders. This cross-fertilization leads to the concept of ‘families or models’ of legal periodicals as determining factors of legal cultures.
Beyond contents of these reviews, the panel investigates the role journals play to implement specific imperial policies, to disseminate new conceptions of power and polity and to translate the imperial imagined communities at work.
Three groups of research questions are recurrent in each paper. Firstly, on the actors: Who were the editors, authors, publishers and – if possible to find out - readers? How did they relate to each other and were there any connections between different titles? What was their relation to professional associations and how large was the impact of these unions on the journal and its readership? Secondly, on the content: How did editors conceive their periodical? In other words, what was written in the opening statement of each periodical? What were the underlying strategies to establish such kind of journal? Which kind of articles, announcements or other messages were
published? On which topics? A third group of questions focuses on the evolution of legal reviews over time. These questions help to reconstruct the way in which those periodicals contributed to the creation of a legal culture.
This panel addresses perfectly the conference theme as it brings together both the functional and the axiological approach as suggested in the Call for Papers. Legal journals identify legal problems and offer policy-makers solutions. In this way, they (can) shape and determine legal identity and culture on a national and international level. The originality of this panel, uniting Belgian, French and Estonian researchers, lays in its comparative dimension analysing law from a European and colonial point of view. Each contribution will illustrate how legal periodicals are vectors of law, promoters of nations/empires and creators of legal cultures and identities. This panel is inherently multidisciplinary as it positions itself on the cross roads of legal, intellectual, colonial and cultural history and literature sciences adopting methods from several disciplines.
Sebastiaan Vandenbogaerde graduated in 2006 with a degree in history and in 2010 he obtained a master's degree in law.
Between August 2010 and September 2014, he worked on a FWO (Research Foundation-Flanders) research project on Belgium’s leading legal journals. In his dissertation Vectoren van het recht. Geschiedenis van de Belgische juridische tijdschriften (Vectors of law. History of Belgium's legal periodicals), he posited that legal periodicals are not mere mirrors of law, but also shape it. In other words, they are 'vectors' or 'carriers' of legal ideas spread by those titles. The members of the editorial boards play herein a crucial role.
Currently he is post-doctoral researcher at the Ghent Law Faculty. His research focusses on legal periodicals as builders of nations and empires. Further, he works on administrative law - within a national and international framework - in the German occupation during both World Wars.
Prof. Florence Renucci
(scientific part of
University of Lille
Florence Renucci studied at Perugia University (Italy) and Institut d’Etudes Politiques in Aix-en-Provence (France). She obtained her PhD in law in Aix-en-Provence. Today, she is CNRS (National Centre for Scientific Research) Researcher at the Centre of Judicial History of the University Lille 2 (UMR 8025) and studies the European History of Law and the Justice in a colonial and post-colonial context. She published about forty contributions and coordinated several projects on this issue and she’s co-editor of the research blog "Colonialcorpus". She has e.g. issued the Dictionary of the overseas Lawyers (2012 and 2015) and with Samia El-Mechat, The decolonization in the XXth c. The men of the transition, Paris, L’Harmattan, 2014.
Dr Sebastiaan Vandenbogaerde
Ing. Isabelle Thiebau
(technical part of
University of Lille
Isabelle Thiébau, CNRS (National Centre for Scientific Research) Assistant engineer at the Centre of Judicial History of the University Lille 2 (UMR 8025), Isabelle Thiébau works as support engineer for the axis "Justice and colonial Law". The main part of its mission is the creation of digital tools intended at the same time for the valuation of the scientific heritage (written and oral) and for the dissemination of the knowledge towards researchers, professors, members of the legal professions and the general public. Her objective is to put the digital humanities at the service of the science.
Dr Merike Ristikivi
University of Tartu
Ms Pascaline le Polain
University Saint-Louis in Brusselles
Prof. Nathalie Tousignant
University Saint-Louis in Brusselles
Pascaline le Polain (°1987) is a history graduate of the Université Catholique de Louvain (2010). Her master's thesis constituted an analysis of the integration of indigenous medical assistants (AMI) within the health care department of the Belgian Congo between 1920 and 1960. She also holds a management certificate from the ICHEC (Brussels) and in September 2011 joined the team of the Sinomlando Center for Oral History and Memory work (University of Kwa Zulu Natal) directed by prof. Philippe Denis (Pietermaritzburg, South Africa). She carries out research on the problem of aids in its social dimension based on an oral history approach. From 1 May 2013 to 31 December 2014 she participated as researcher on colonial justice in the Interuniversity Attraction Pole Justice and Populations. The Belgian experience in international perspective 1795 - 2010 at the CEGESOMA.
On 1 January 2015 she started her PhD research under the supervision of prof. dr. Nathalie Tousignant on the colonial Belgian judiciary at Saint-Louis University of Brussels. Her project analyses social networks of the Belgian colonial magistracy (http://www.crhidi.be/contrats-de-recherches/belgafrican-magistrates-social-networks/). By focussing on Antoine Sohier (1885-1963), she uses a biographical approach aiming at the analysis of how the Belgian Congo legal system functioned and how many channels of production, dissemination and use of “colonial legal knowledge” were used.
Nathalie Tousignant, Full Professor of Contemporary History at Université Saint-Louis – Bruxelles since September 1999.
Panel 3: Thinking about Ourselves: Legal Historiography and Identity
Chair: Prof. Nir Kedar (Sapir Academic School of Law & Bar-Ilan University)
Speakers: Prof. Luigi Lacchè (University of Macerata), Dr Agustin Parise (University of Maastricht),
Mr Henrik Forshamn (Uppsala University), Dr Jacek Srokosz (Opole University)
Prof. Luigi Lacchè
University of Macerata
Dr Agustin Parise
University of Maastricht
Mr Henrik Forshamn
University of Uppsala
Luigi Lacchè is Full Professor in Legal History at the University of Macerata, Department of Law. He has founded in 2001 the Journal of Constitutional History. He is member of the Steering or Scientific Committee of the periodicals: The Western Australian Jurist (Perth), Historia constitucional (Oviedo, Spain), Crime, Histoire & Sociétés – Crime, History & Societies, (Geneva, Droz), Déviance et société (Paris, Editions Médecine & Hygiène), Beccaria. Revue d'histoire du droit de punirﾠ(Geneva, Georg), Quaderni fiorentini per la storia del pensiero giuridico moderno (Milan, Giuffrè), Rivista di storia del diritto italiano (Turin). He worked as fellow researcher at various European institutions: in London at the London School of Economics (1986); in Paris at the Maison des Sciences de l’Homme and at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (1990-92, 1999); in Heidelberg at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität. He obtained scholarships from the Max-Planck-Institut für europäische Rechtsgeschichte (Frankfurt am Main 1994-1995, 2001, 2004, 2008), the Institut d’études politiques et juridiques, the Italian National Council of Research (CNR) and the Funds National Suisse de la Recherche (Geneva 1996, 1997).
He taught as a visiting professor in the Universities of Rennes, Orléans, Geneva, Paris II, Barcelona Autonòma, Universidad internaciónal de Andalucía (Santa Maria de La Rábida). He was invited as speaker and chairman in many national and international conferences. Since the first November 2010 he is the Rector of the University of Macerata (until 31.10.2016).
Noteworthy among his research interests are: Criminal Law and Justice during modern and contemporary age; relationships among public order, liberties and criminal trial in Italian juridical thought during the Liberal Age. He is a specialist of the history of public law, he dedicated various essays to the French juridical culture and particularly a broad monograph regarding the expropriation for public utility and the property regime in the Nineteenth century, highlighting the relationship between administration and owners. In the last fifteenth years he has focused his research interests on the history of constitutional systems, dedicating essays to the French, Italian, Suisse and Belgian experiences. Presently he is working on the italian Fascist justice and to a collection of his articles on the Comparative Constitutional History (History & Constitution): Vittorio Klostermann Publisher, Frankfurt am Main.
Among his recent works: «Non giudicate». Antropologia della giustizia e figure dell’opinione pubblica tra Otto e Novecento, Napoli, Satura Editrice, 2009 (German version “Richtet nicht!”. Anthropologie der Justiz und Formen der öffentlichen Meinung im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert, Berlin, Lit Verlag, 2012; Spanish version «No juzguéis». Antropología de la justicia e imágenes de la opinión pública entre los siglos XIX y XX, Santander, Editorial de la Universidad de Cantabria, 2014); ed. by (with Jean Marc Berlière, Jonas Campion, Xavier Rousseaux), Justices militaires et guerres mondiales. Military Justices and World Wars. Europe 1914-1950, Louvain, UCL – Presses Universitaires de Louvain, 2013; Der eklektizistische Kanon. Auf der Suche nach einer “Tiefenschicht” der italienischen Rechtskultur des 19. Jahrhunderts, mit einer Einleitung von Hans Schlosser, Berlin, Lit, 2014; ed. by, Il diritto del Duce. Giustizia e repressione nell’Italia fascista, Roma, Donzelli, 2015; ed. by (with F. Colao, C. Storti), Giustizia penale e politica in Italia tra Otto e Novecento. Modelli ed esperienze tra integrazione e conflitto, Milano, Giuffrè, 2015.
Agustín Parise is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Law of Maastricht University (The Netherlands). He received his degrees of LL.B. (abogado) and LL.D. (doctor en derecho) at Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina), where he was a lecturer in Legal History during 2001-2005. He received his degree of LL.M. at Louisiana State University Law Center (USA), where he was research associate at the Center of Civil Law Studies during 2006-2010. Agustín further received his degree of PhD at Maastricht University, where he was researcher at the Department of Foundations and Methods of Law during 2011-2015. Agustín has been visiting fellow and visiting researcher at the Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht; the Max-Planck-Institut für europäische Rechtsgeschichte; the Institute of European and Comparative Law of University of Oxford; and the École normale supérieure in Paris.
He is reviews editor of the journal Comparative Legal History and executive editor of the Journal of Civil Law Studies. In Argentina, the Association of Comparative Law honored him with the Cueto Rua Award (2008) and the National Academy of Law named him the most accomplished young jurist for the period 2009-2011. In Europe, the Ius Commune Research School conferred to him an Honorable Mention in the Ius Commune Prize 2012.
His research interests fall in the areas of Legal History and Comparative Law. He published more than 60 academic pieces, including books and articles in English, French, and Spanish. He has taught, lectured, and/or published in Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, England, France, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, the Netherlands, United States, and Uruguay.