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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Call for Papers: Human Rights and Empire - A Graduate Conference

via H-Law:

Human Rights and Empire: A Graduate Conference

University of Chicago Pozen Family Center for Human Rights
Thursday and Friday, May 19-20, 2016
Imperial powers have often been among the most vocal advocates of human rights. Are human rights ideals in tension with imperialism, or might such ideals in fact be implicated in imperial projects? Especially if such ideals have been complicit in empire, can invocations of human rights still be useful in opposing imperial and racial domination? How does the history of human rights relate to the history of imperialism and decolonization?
This conference will bring together graduate students working with a range of theoretical and historical approaches to address the politics of human rights in relation to race and empire. Potential topics include (but are not limited to) the relationship between liberalism and empire; questions of intervention and sovereignty; narratives of nationhood in human rights discourse; the place of international law in past and contemporary forms of imperialism; international imaginaries and forms of solidarity beyond the nation-state; and connections between human rights, sovereignty, and self-determination.
The conference will run for a day and a half, starting mid-afternoon on Thursday, May 19th and ending early Friday evening, May 20th, 2016. It will include up to six workshop-style sessions on pre-circulated graduate student papers, as well as a keynote talk by Antony Anghie (University of Utah) on “Colonialism and the Future of Human Rights.” Each session will begin with comments from a University of Chicago graduate student discussant. The presenter will have time to respond to discussant comments before opening the conversation to the wider group. 
Paper proposals, including a title and an abstract of approximately 500 words, are due by Tuesday, March 1 at 9:00am CST, and should be submitted through the conference website. Notifications will be sent by mid-March. University of Chicago graduate students are welcome to apply; however, preference will be given to external applicants. The conference will cover the cost of lodging in shared rooms for out of town presenters. A limited amount of travel funding is available for participants who cannot secure funding from their home institution. 
Those presenting papers will be expected to send their paper draft to the conference organizer for circulation to participants by Monday, May 9th. They are also expected to read all papers and attend all sessions. Travel plans should include arriving in Chicago by 12 noon on Thursday, May 19th and depart no earlier than 7pm on Friday, May 20th.
The conference is sponsored by the University of Chicago Pozen Family Center for Human Rights. For more information and to submit an abstract:

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Cfp: Building/Bending/Breaking Boundaries: (Re)Conceptualizing Legal Enquiry, Carleton Grad Legal Studies conference

Graduate Legal Studies Association 11th Annual Conference, Carleton University
Building/Bending/Breaking Boundaries: (Re)Conceptualizing Legal Enquiry
17, March 2016

Law is replete with boundaries and binaries that often emerge as localities of struggle in the legal balance between stability and transformation – such as: law versus equity, domestic versus international jurisdictions, private versus public law, and security versus liberty. Law pushes the bounds of social, economic, and political transformations, yet, at the same time, labours to ensure stability, predictability and continuity in its response to significant and recurring social phenomena. As a result, these binaries often shape the scope of our theoretical inquiry and, in turn, we seek to challenge the boundaries of accepted methodologies, theories, ontologies,typologies and epistemologies.

In order to facilitate interdisciplinary exchange, we encourage participants from a wide variety of disciplinary backgrounds to consider how we might attempt to cross the ‘boundaries’ in our exploration of contemporary or historical socio-legal phenomena. Paper topics might include, but are not limited to:
• Theories and impacts of globalization on the domestic and international society
• Legal responses to climate change narratives
• Neoliberal policies and the neo-colonial/post-colonial state
• Labour and social movements
• The stasis of government responses to a proliferation of recent and past refugee crises

Proposals should consist of a short abstract (max 250 words), the title of your work, and your institutional affiliation. Please email your submission to
Organizers will contact you in the weeks following the abstract submission to advise whether or not it has been accepted. ** NEW deadline for proposals: February 1, 2016

Friday, January 22, 2016

Bowden, 1791: The Birth of Canada, on SSRN

James Bowden, an graduate student in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa (author of the excellent blog Parliamentum and contributor to iPolitics)  has posted "1791: The Birth of Canada" on SSRN.

Here's the abstract:

"Canada" as a polity dates back to 1791, rather than to 1867.

This paper outlines how the polity established by the Westminster Parliament through the Constitutional Act, 1791 (the colonies of Upper and Lower Canada under the Imperial Crown) evolved, in a direct and unbroken line, into the modern Canadian state, a constitutional monarchy now under its own separate Crown of Canada. This polity's institutions -- General General, the political executive, the parliament, the courts, and the civil service -- evolved uninterrupted as the Westminster Parliament re-organized the British North American Crown colonies through the Constitutional Act, 1791, the Act of Union, 1841, and the British North America Act, 1867. 

Consequently, the Government of Canada's "Canada at 150" campaign, which equates "Canada" as a polity to Confederation in 1867, is a misnomer. "Confederation at 150" would be a more accurate slogan because we are celebrating the sesquicentennial of Confederation, when the United Province of Canada became the Dominion of Canada and reorganized the existed Crown colonies into a federation, and not the sesquicentennial of "Canada" itself.

Monday, January 18, 2016

CFP: Legal History Graduate Student Conference Hosted by the Law and Humanities Graduate Study Group at Brown University

Legal History Graduate Student Conference Hosted by the Law and Humanities Graduate Study Group at Brown University 
Saturday April 23rd, 2016 at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island 
Deadline for submission: February 29th , 2016 Acceptance notification: March 7th , 2016 

The Law and Humanities Graduate Study Group at Brown invites paper submissions on any topic in legal history, or any historically-inclined approach to the study of “law and …,” for its inaugural graduate student conference. We invite papers on any theme, period and location. The day-long conference will consist of moderated panels with faculty commentators, and a lunchtime faculty panel on “Varieties of Legal Sources.” Please submit a 150- to 300-word abstract along with your C.V. by February 29th, 2016 to Sara Ludin at

If you have questions, please contact Sara Ludin ( or Jonathan Lande ( This event is made possible through the generous support of: the Brown History Department, the Brown English Department, and the Brown Faculty Legal History Workshop.

h/t Joanna Grisinger 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Moore, The Court of Appeal for Ontario shortlisted for Legislative Assembly of Ontario Speaker's Award

History of the Ontario Court of AppealCongratulations to Christopher Moore, whose The Court of Appeal for Ontario: Defining the Right of Appeal, 1792-2013, published by the Osgoode Society and the U of T Press, has been shortlisted for the 2015 Speaker’s Book Award at the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. 

The award will be announced at a ceremony at Queen's Park on March 7th. Good luck Chris!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

New release from MQUP: Hall, From Treaties to Reserves

Though some believe that the Indian treaties of the 1870s achieved a unity of purpose between the Canadian government and First Nations, in From Treaties to Reserves D.J. Hall asserts that - as a result of profound cultural differences - each side interpreted the negotiations differently, leading to conflict and an acute sense of betrayal when neither group accomplished what the other had asked. 

Hall explores the original intentions behind the government's policies, illustrates their attempts at cooperation, and clarifies their actions. While the government believed that the Aboriginal peoples of what is now southern and central Alberta desired rapid change, the First Nations, in contrast, believed that the government was committed to supporting the preservation of their culture while they adapted to change. Government policies intended to motivate backfired, leading instead to poverty, starvation, and cultural restriction. Many policies were also culturally insensitive, revealing misconceptions of Aboriginal people as lazy and over-dependent on government rations. Yet the first two decades of reserve life still witnessed most First Nations people participating in reserve economies, many of the first generation of reserve-born children graduated from schools with some improved ability to cope with reserve life, and there was also more positive cooperation between government and First Nations people than is commonly acknowledged.

The Indian treaties of the 1870s meant very different things to government officials and First Nations. Rethinking the interaction between the two groups, From Treaties to Reserves elucidates the complexities of this relationship.

(Reposting) CFP: 2016 Canadian Law and Society Association Annual Meeting, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB 85th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences - Energizing Communities

I am reposting this Call for Papers at the request of Nicole O'Byrne. Nicole is very interested in having a good contingent of legal historians and legal history panels.

2016 Canadian Law and Society Association Annual Meeting University of Calgary, Calgary, AB 85th Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences - Energizing Communities Call for Papers
The program committee of the Canadian Law and Society Association invites submissions for its Annual Conference to be held during the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Calgary. The theme for Congress 2016, “Energizing Communities,” provides an excellent opportunity for law and society scholars to explore law’s place in community building and the fostering of pluralistic relationships. We welcome proposals for papers in any area of Law and Society and socio-legal scholarship. We encourage participants to submit suggestions for complete panels and roundtables. Panel organizers should include the following in their submissions: a thematic overview of no more than 500 words, abstracts for each paper (250 words or less), a title for the panel, a one page CV for each presenter and a suggested chair or discussant. Individual submissions are most welcome and should include the following: a title, an abstract (250 words or less) and a one ! page CV. Please indicate in your submission if you are willing to serve as a panel chair. We are open to having a number of panels that focus on particular themes such as legal history, religious freedom, gender & sexuality, law & technology and indigenous legal knowledge. It may be helpful for presenters to know that the CLSA conference will overlap with the Annual Conference of the Canadian Association of Law Teachers on May 30 & 31. There will be a number of events dedicated to graduate students. The conference keynote speaker will be Prof. John McLaren, Professor Emeritus, Faculty of Law, University of Victoria, who will deliver his address at the banquet on May 30. Professor McLaren served as the first Dean of the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Law.
Where: University of Calgary, Calgary, AB When: May 28-30, 2016 Deadline: January 31, 2016 Submission information: Please forward panel and paper proposals by email attachment to Nicole O’Byrne, CLSA Vice-President (Conferences) at Please put your last name and the words “CLSA submission” in the subject line. Presenters must be members of the CLSA. They must also register for Congress and pay the Congress fees, including the society fee for the CLSA. Information about registration, accommodation and other Congress activities is available on the Congress website:
Réunion annuelle de l’Association canadienne Droit et Société (2016)
Université de Calgary, Calgary, Alberta
Le 85e Congrès annuel des Sciences humaines : L’Énergie des communautés
Appel de communications
Le comité des programmes de l’ACDS vous invite à soumettre vos contributions en vue de sa Conférence annuelle qui aura lieu lors du Congrès des Sciences humaines 2016 à l’Université de Calgary. Le thème du Congrès 2016, L’Énergie des communautés, offre une excellente occasion d’explorer la place du droit dans le renforcement des collectivités et le pluralisme communautaire.
Toutes contributions relatives aux disciplines s’intéressant au droit et société, ainsi qu’aux recherches sociojuridiques sont bienvenues. L’Association encourage les participants à soumettre leurs contributions pour des présentations individuelles et des tables rondes. Les organisateurs de tables rondes doivent nous faire parvenir l’aperçu thématique (500 mots maximum), le résumé de chaque présentation (250 mots maximum), le titre de la table ronde, le curriculum vitae (1 page) de chaque orateur, ainsi que le nom d’une personne qu’on propose comme modérateur. Les propositions de présentations individuelles doivent inclurent : un titre, un résumé (250 mots maximum) et un curriculum vitae (1 page). Veuillez aussi indiquer si vous souhaitez siéger en tant que modérateur. L’ACDS accueille tout particulièrement les propositions pour des groupes de discussion portant sur des thèmes reliés à l’histoire juridique, la liberté de religion, le! genre et la sexualité, le droit et la technologie, ainsi que les questions juridiques relatives aux autochtones.
Il pourrait s’avérer utile aux personnes qui présentent de savoir que la réunion annuelle de l’ACDS coïncide avec le Colloque annuel de l’Association canadienne des professeurs de droit, le 30-31 mai 2016. De nombreuses activités sont prévues pour les étudiants diplômés. Le professeur émérite John McLaren de la faculté de droit de l’Université de Victoria sera le conférencier principal. Professeur McLaren a été le premier doyen de la faculté de droit de l’Université de Calgary. Sa présentation aura lieu lors du banquet le 30 mai.
Lieu : Université de Calgary, Calgary, Alberta
Dates du Congrès : du 28-30 mai 2016
Échéancier : Le 31 janvier 2016
Format : Toutes les communications doivent être soumises en pièces jointes, par courrier électronique, à Nicole O’Byrne, vice-présidente (conférences) de l’ACDS à Veuillez indiquer votre nom de famille, ainsi que les mots Contributions ACDS dans le champ « Objet ». Pour présenter, vous devez être membre de l’ACDS. Vous devez aussi compléter votre inscription au Congrès et acquitter les frais d’inscription au Congrès, qui comprennent aussi les frais de conférence pour l’ACDS.
Des renseignements supplémentaires portant sur l’inscription, le logement et le programme des activités du Congrès sont offerts sur le site Internet du Congrès à

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Osgoode Society Legal History Workshop : Revised Winter Schedule (updated with new session)


Please note date change for the last session.

Venue Northrop Frye Hall, Victoria College, U of T, room #008, All sessions begin at 6:30 pm. Everyone welcome . For directions email Jim at or Mary at To be added to the distribution list to receive copies of the papers, email Jim at

Wednesday January 6 – Nick Rogers, York University, ‘Imperial Crisis, Mobilization and the Law: Unpacking Gillray's print ‘The Liberty of the Subject’, 1779.’

Wednesday January 20 - Michel Morin, University of Montreal: “The Recognition of Aboriginal Property and Territories in New France”

Wednesday February 3 – Sam MacLean, University of London: "The Westminster Model Navy: The Royal Navy and the Restoration."


Wednesday March 2 – Kevin Crosby, University of Newcastle-on-Tyne: “Female Jurors in the English Assize Courts, 1920-1925”

Wednesday March 16 – Ryan Alford, Lakehead University:  "Understanding Judicial Tolerance of Executive Branch Unilateralism: Changing Dynamics in the American Federal Judicial Appointments Process 1972-2010"

Wednesday March 30 - Karen Macfarlane, York University, ‘Selling protections against arrest: Pushing and creating the limits of diplomatic immunity in the eighteenth century.’

Wednesday April 13 – Kelly DeLuca, TBA *please note new date*