A Conference in Law and the Humanities
Presented by Albany Law School and the Liberal Studies Program at the University at Albany
March 31 — April 1, 2017
Albany Law School
80 New Scotland Ave., Albany, N.Y. 12208
CALL FOR PAPERS:
This conference hosts a multidisciplinary conversation on how we contend with the emergence of violence toward difference, before it receives remedial treatment by the law, that is, before it crosses the threshold of the rule of law. Many – perhaps most – forms of injustice persist for long periods of time beneath the threshold of the law, and may continue indefinitely (one thinks of recent debates about the Confederate flag at the South Carolina State Capitol, following the Charleston Church shooting). Many social institutions outside the legal system are forced to develop strategies of negotiating violence, even when this is not their principal function (one thinks of recent university responses to racial and sexual violence at the University of Missouri and elsewhere). Other social institutions that may not appear to be concerned with law can in fact be shown to have a significant engagement with legal issues (one thinks of Greek tragedy in democratic Athens, or the sentimental novel in nineteenth-century America, or the development of post-colonial studies in the university). NGO activity and social movements such as Occupy and Black Lives Matter, respond to violence and injustice, both before and after the law has intervened. Violence constructed around difference appears in contexts that may initially seem remote (consider the role of science in generating debate about environmental justice). It gives rise to new strategies of social transformation, in conditions where legal action appears impossible (such as with the Truth Commission in South Africa). Legal systems themselves adjust and transform in response to new social conditions. How are we to understand the various ways in which violence is negotiated, within the law and beyond the threshold of law? These questions bear on the constant disequilibrium between “law” and “justice.” The conference invites papers that speak to these issues from a broad range of disciplines and perspectives.
Papers and panel proposals are invited. For papers, please provide a name, institutional affiliation, title and abstract of 200-300 words; for panels, the same information for each participant. Send to Charles Shepherdson, Director of Liberal Studies, University at Albany,
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2017.