Third Legal Histories of Empire Symposium with Saheed Aderinto, Thaïs Gendry and Stacey Hynd

Join us for the third Legal Histories of Empire symposium!

Our speakers:

Professor Saheed Aderinto,“Let Us Be Kind to Our Dumb Friends”: The Imperial Root of Animal Cruelty Laws in Colonial Nigeria

Animal cruelty legislations were rooted in the affirmation that the level of civilization of a people can be measured by how they treat lower creatures. It was also rooted in contradictory notions of rights and justice for all colonial subjects—humans and non-humans. In colonial courts, cases of animal cruelty expanded the domain of punishment, and gave uncommon agency to animals to receive “justice” for human contravention on their “rights.” The ideas of “rights” and “justice” for imperial animals, I argued, turned them into colonial subjects, whose lives and wellness must be protected from other colonial subjects, that is, humans.

Saheed Aderinto is Professor of African History at Western Carolina University. He has published 8 books, including Animality and Colonial Subjecthood in Africa: The Human and Nonhuman Creatures of Nigeria (Ohio University Press, forthcoming 2021).

Dr Thaïs Gendry and Dr Stacey Hynd, Punishing Female Murderers in British and French Colonial African Territories, c.1920-40s

What drove colonial societies to prosecute, sentence and sometimes execute African women? Comparing court records across British and French territories in Africa shows divergent policing choices and law enforcement strategies, all-the-while highlighting striking similarities in their combination of gender and racial bias – that declared African women doubly irresponsible of their violent acts – which translated into a generous mercy policy. Yet, in all territories, the full severity of the law was unleashed onto women when their crime was understood to hold a specifically anti-modern component in the motive or the method (ritualistic or cannibalistic crimes, crimes against Christians). This presentation will explore the pendular movement between colonials’ benevolent mercy with regards to “unimportant” domestic female criminality, and extreme exemplary punishment against women in the name of the “civilizing mission”.

Thaïs Gendry recently completed her PhD on the use of death penalty in French West Africa. She is now working on a postdoctoral project that examines the discourses and policies surrounding death penalty across the French Empire (Caribbean, Indochina, French equatorial Africa). The ambition of this research is to illuminate both the shared foundation of colonial state violence and the specificities of its use in different colonial contexts. She is currently teaching colonial and African history at the Universidad de Buenos Aires and the Universidad de Quilmes.

Stacey Hynd completed her D.Phil in Modern History as an AHRC/Beit Research Scholar at the University of Oxford in 2008, with her thesis on capital punishment in British colonial Africa. She then lectured in African and World History at the University of Cambridge, before moving to Exeter where she is Senior Lecturer in African History and co-Director of the Centre for Imperial & Global History. She has published on murder, capital punishment, criminal justice, domestic violence, juvenile delinquency, and forced labour in colonial history, focusing primarily on Ghana, Kenya and Malawi. Her current research projects focus on global and African histories of child soldiering, and histories of humanitarianism in Africa.

Register here via Eventbrite and check your time zone below for the event date and time.

Zoom information will be emailed to you 48 hours before the event begins.

Timezones:

Calgary @ noon, Thursday June 10, 2021

Raleigh, NC @ 2pm, Thursday June 10, 2021

Buenos Aires @ 3 pm, Thursday June 10, 2021

London @ 7 pm, Thursday June 10, 2021

Lagos @ 7 pm, Thursday June 10, 2021

Sydney @ 4 am, Friday June 11, 2021

Wellington @ 6am, Friday June 11, 2021

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Call For Papers: Third Legal Histories of Empire Conference

Beyond the Pale: Legal Histories on the Edges of Empires

Maynooth University, 29 June-1 July 2022

Empires. Plural. Across time and across the globe, interconnected, mutually constitutive. We invite papers which consider the interconnections and the legal relations between empires. The conference will particularly focus on the role played by law (broadly defined) in facilitating, constituting, and enabling these connections; on the people of law who moved between these places; and the institutions which bound them together. How might we map Empires through these connections? How do we now conceptualise such movement, and are there new ways in which we could envisage legal interchange across time and place? Of particular interest are the connections between places with very different legal systems and traditions. How can we better bring together the efforts of historians working in different legal traditions? In this third Legal Histories of Empires conference we hope to more deeply uncover the legal threads that bound different empires, places, laws and legal traditions across the globe.

Keynote Panel: Jane Ohlmeyer, Richard J Ross, Philip Stern: ‘Anglicisation of and through law in British America, Ireland, and India, c.1550-1800’

Abstracts to [email protected] or the relevant stream by 31 October 2021. Acceptances will be sent in late November 2021.

The organisers are not able to provide funding for travel. However, the Max Planck Institute has generously offered scholarships for scholars from the Global South. The information on these is on the website (lhbe.org) and applicants should follow the instructions on that site.

Format: Face to Face with provision for virtual presentations and attendance. Please indicate on your abstract whether your participation is contingent on the availability of online participation.

Individual papers: If you are submitting an individual paper, please submit an abstract of no more than 250 words.

Panels (of no more than 4 speakers: a chair and/or commentator can be included): If you are submitting a panel, please submit:

1) A panel abstract of no more than 250 words; and

2) Individual paper abstracts of no more than 200 words.

Personal information: For each participant (presenter, chair, or commentator), please submit:

1) Biographical details of no more than 200 words; and

2) Where you will be in July 2022 if you are not physically in Ireland, and what timezone that place is in.

Only one proposal can be submitted per person. For streams please send to the relevant panel organiser (below). For general proposals please send to the main conference email address. No multiple submissions will be accepted.

Streams

In addition to papers and panels addressing the theme generally, the following streams will be offered. Individual paper proposals and panel proposals in the same format as above should be sent to the organisers of the relevant stream.

Intellectual Property in Empire: Prof Isabella Alexander: [email protected]

The Maritime World in Legal History: Prof Diane Kirkby: [email protected]

Indigeneity, Law and Empires: Prof Pooja Parmar: [email protected]

Legal Transfer in the Common Law World: Prof Stefan Vogenauer and Dr Donal Coffey: [email protected]

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Legal Histories of Empires Conference 2022: Scholarships

The Max Planck Institute for Legal History and Legal Theory, based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, is delighted to offer a bursary scheme for scholars who wish to attend and deliver a talk at the Legal Histories of Empires conference and who are currently based in the Global South. The Institute is promoting research on, among others, legal transfers in the common law world, where the development of law on the Indian subcontinent is of particular interest, and the legal history of Ibero-America.

The Institute offers a bursary to attend the conference comprised of: flights to and from the conference, the registration fee, accommodation, a daily stipend, and the expenses associated with a visa application. Applicants must be currently based at an institution in one of the G77 Group of countries at the United Nations.

In order to apply for the scholarship, candidates will be asked to submit the following information: a statement of interest, the proposed topic to be delivered, and a short CV (no more than 3 pages). Applications should be sent to [email protected] by 31 October 2021. Acceptances will be sent around mid-December.

More information about the Legal Histories of Empires Conference 2022 can be found here, where you can also subscribe for email updates.

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Third Legal Histories of Empire Conference: Keynote panel

The organising committee is delighted to announce the keynote panel for the conference.

Title:

Anglicisation of and through law in British America, Ireland, and India, c.1550-1800

Speakers:

Jane Ohlmeyer, Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern History, Trinity College Dublin

Richard J Ross, David C. Baum Professor of Law and Professor of History, University of Illinois

Philip Stern, Associate Professor of History, Duke University

More information about the upcoming conference can be found on our website, where you may also subscribe for email updates.

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Third Legal Histories of Empire Conference

The organising committee is delighted to confirm the re-scheduled dates for the Conference.

When: 29 June-1 July 2022

Where: Maynooth University, Ireland

What: Beyond the Pale: Legal Histories on the Edges of Empires

CFP: Out in the next week or two.

Accommodation and Registration: We will be providing information about accommodation on this website well before the event. Accommodation will be available on campus and at a number of hotels in the area.

What about Covid-19? At present our expectation is that this will be a hybrid conference. We hope that by late June 2022 some of our presenters will be able to attend in person. We also hope to offer options for those who cannot attend. Things may change (particularly with the ‘in person’ part). We will be responsive to the changing circumstances and to health advice. And we will keep you all informed.

Questions: Email  Shaunnagh Dorsett ([email protected]) or Lyndsay Campbell ([email protected])

To do now? If you have not already, sign up on the right (at lhbe.org) for email notifications. We will not spam you. We will let you know only what you need to know when you need to know it!

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Legal Histories of Empire symposium with Lisa Ford and Jessica Hinchy

Join us for the second of several symposia planned for 2020 and 2021 for Legal Histories of Empire.

Our speakers:

Lisa Ford: ‘The King’s Colonial Peace: Variable subjecthood and the transformation of empire’

This paper is drawn from my forthcoming book, The King’s Peace: Empire and Order in the British Empire. The book uses colonial peacekeeping as a lens through which to examine the shifting parameters of crown prerogative in Empire in the Age of Revolutions. This paper will argue that the legal vulnerability of (and often threats to order posed by) a diverse array of subjects – formerly French Catholics in Quebec, Caribbean slaves and NSW convicts – both prompted and justified the unravelling of the very idea of the freeborn Englishman that had been mobilised by protestant Britons in pre-revolutionary America.

Lisa Ford is Professor of History at the University of New South Wales, Australia. Her major publications include Settler Sovereignty: Jurisdiction and Indigenous People in America and Australia, 1788-1836 (2010) which won the Littleton-Griswold Prize (American Historical Association); the Thomas J. Wilson Prize (Harvard University Press); and the Premiers History Award (NSW). She is also co-author of Rage for Order: The British Empire and the Origins of International Law, 1800-1850 (co-authored with Lauren Benton, 2016) and author of The King’s Peace, which will be published by Harvard later this year. Ford is currently leading a collaborative project funded by the Australian Research Council exploring the role of commissions of inquiry sent throughout the British Empire in the 1820s on which subject she hopes to lead author a book manuscript this year. She also holds a four-year ARC Future Fellowship, during which she will explore the changing use of martial law in the British Empire from the late eighteenth century until 1865.

Jessica Hinchy: ‘Child Removal and the Colonial Governance of the Family: Hijra and “Criminal Tribe” Households in North India, c. 1865-1900’

Historians have primarily examined colonial child removal projects in settler colonial contexts. Yet from 1865, the colonial government in north India forcibly removed children from criminalised communities. Child separation began in the households of gender non-conforming people labelled ‘eunuchs,’ particularly Hijras, and eventually extended to socially marginalised people designated as ‘criminal tribes,’ especially Sansiyas. First, what does a comparison of these child removal schemes tell us about the colonial governance of the family? Patrilineal, conjugal and reproductive household models marginalised Hijras and Sansiyas in differing ways, while the category of ‘child’ was contingently defined. Child separation was attempted to varying ends, including both elimination and assimilation. Yet often, the colonial state could not sustain such intensified forms of intimate governance in the face of resistance from households. Nor could officials simply determine removed children’s futures. Second, what does child removal suggest about the making of colonial law? When children were initially removed from Hijra and Sansiya households, officials admitted that ‘the law may have been somewhat strained,’ since existing laws did not provide police or magistrates with legal powers to separate these children. The Sansiya child removal project, for instance, prompted debates about colonial legal exceptions and the ‘legality’ of the colonial state’s practices among colonial officials and Indian and European non-officials.

Jessica Hinchy is an Assistant Professor of History at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. She researches the history of gender, sexuality, households and family in colonial north India. In 2019, Cambridge University Press published her first monograph, Governing Gender and Sexuality in Colonial India: The Hijra, c. 1850-1900. Her research has also appeared in Modern Asian Studies, Gender & History and Asian Studies Review, among other journals.

The event will take place by zoom on Friday 5 March (or Thursday 4 March, depending on your timezone – see below). Please register here (via Eventbrite) to attend.

Timezones:

Sydney @ 12.30 pm on 5 March

Singapore @ 9.30 am on 5 March

Auckland @ 2.30 pm on 5 March

New Delhi @ 7.00 am on 5 March

London/Dublin @ 1.30 am on 5 March

Nairobi @ 4.30 am on 5 March

Vancouver @ 5.30 pm on 4 March

New Haven/Toronto @ 8.30 pm on 4 March

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Legal Histories of Empire Symposium: Rohit De and Catherine Evans

Please join us for the first of several planned symposia in 2020 and 2021 for Legal Histories of Empire and for the celebration of a special birthday of the founder of the Legal Histories of Empire Conferences.

Our speakers:

Rohit De: “Brown Lawyers, Black Robes: Decolonization, Diasporic Lawyers and Minority Rights”

Rohit De is Associate Professor of History at Yale University and is the author of A People’s Constitution: The Everyday Life of Law in the Indian Republic (2018). As a Carnegie Fellow, he is currently working on a book on a history of rebellious lawyering and decolonization

Catherine Evans: “Civilization as Sanity in the Victorian Empire” 

Catherine L. Evans is Assistant Professor at the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies at the University of Toronto. Her first book, Unsound Empire: Civilization and Madness in Late-Victorian Law, comes out next fall (Yale University Press, 2021).

Timezones: 

New Haven/Toronto @ 4 pm on 30 October

Vancouver @ 1pm on 30 October

Sydney @ 7 am on 31 October

Auckland @ 9 am on 31October

London/Dublin @ 8 pm on 30 October

Singapore @ 4 am on 31 October

Registration: Free via Eventbrite.

https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/legal-histories-of-empire-symposium-tickets-125282891501

Registration is required.  You will be emailed a Zoom link 36 hours before the event. 

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Legal Histories of Empires Conference: Delay to 2022

Like others organising conferences scheduled for 2021, we initially hoped to still be able to proceed, if not all together in Maynooth, at least in a mixed format. However, as the pandemic spreads it has become obvious that this is not really possible. We have considered an online format, but the genuinely global nature of our participants makes this difficult. We reluctantly have decided, therefore, to delay the conference until 2022. We are still finalising dates, but we do hope it will be more or less exactly one year later, and of course still at Maynooth. We will confirm dates as soon as possible.

In the meantime we will post the call for papers. Although there will be a formal call for papers in the first half of next year, we hope doing so might get people thinking about topics. And we know that with much research limited by the pandemic it is taking longer to get projects going.

We intend next year to hold a number of small, online, events on Legal Histories of Empires. Details will be posted. We will certainly do our best to ensure that there is something for everyone, no matter your time zone!

In the meantime we very much hope you will still think of joining us in 2022. It may be that some mixed format will still be needed, both for safety and because we all sadly expect that funding may not have been fully restored. We will decide this much closer to the time. It has proven very difficult to anticipate even several months ahead.

Finally, we note that the British Legal History Conference has also delayed one year. For those who were hoping to attend both, please note that our respective dates should hopefully stay close in order to make this possible.

For further information, email Lyndsay Campbell ([email protected]) or Shaunnagh Dorsett ([email protected]).

Updates will continue to be posted to the Legal Histories of Empires website.

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Scholarships

The Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, is delighted to offer a bursary scheme for scholars who wish to attend and deliver a talk at the Legal Histories of Empires conference and who are currently based in the Global South. The Institute is promoting research on, among others, legal transfers in the common law world, where the development of law on the Indian subcontinent is of particular interest, and the legal history of Ibero-America.

The Institute offers a bursary to attend the conference comprised of: flights to and from the conference, the registration fee, accommodation, a daily stipend, and the expenses associated with a visa application. Applicants must be currently based at an institution in one of the G77 Group of countries at the United Nations.

In order to apply for the scholarship, candidates will be asked to submit the following information: a statement of interest, the proposed topic to be delivered, and a short CV (no more than 3 pages). Details of how to apply will be supplied at a later point in time.

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Save the Date!

Save the date for the third Legal Histories of Empire Conference

When: 30 June -2 July 2021

Where: Maynooth University, Ireland

What: Beyond the Pale: Legal Histories on the Edges of Empires

CFP: Coming soon! The CFP will be out in May.

Accommodation and Registration: We will be providing information about accommodation on this website when the CFP is out.

What about Covid-19? Obviously we hope that by July 2021 we will all be meeting in Maynooth. However, we do have contingency plans for other formats if this is not possible.

Questions: Email [email protected]

To do now? Sign up on the right for email notifications. We will not spam you. We will let you know only what you need to know when you need to know it!

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