ESIL Interest Group History of International Law

ESIL Interest Group History of International Law

donderdag 22 september 2022

WORKSHOP: New Directions in the Theory & History of International Law - Workshop II: "Beauty and Power: Aesthetics, History, & International Law", Graduate Institute (Geneva, October 19-20 October 2023, DEADLINE: 25 November 2022)


The field of international legal history finds itself at a crossroads. After some decades, the tone of the literature on the “turn to history” has turned from celebration to self-critique. Indeed, the last couple of years has witnessed increased calls to pursue new directions in international legal history, departing from the “well-worn paths” initially explored. In this vein, some urge for a localized approach to the study of “legal politics,” while others push for a “history of international law in the vernacular,” a “grassroots analysis,” or a “radical historical critique.” In my own work, I have argued for a (new) materialist approach,  which resonates with other broader drives for the retrieval of Marxist perspectives in international legal history. Moreover, the “marked absences” of class, gender, and race from the traditional canon of the discipline seem like an increasingly inexcusable exclusion.  In sum, the stage is set for a profound reconsideration of the aims, methodologies, and archives of contemporary international legal history.

With this in mind, the interdisciplinary workshop series “New Directions in the Theory & History of International Law” aims to create a space where emerging and senior scholars of different traditions can meet and rethink on the past, present, and future of the theory and history of the discipline. For this purpose, the Geneva Graduate Institute will host a series of two-day academic workshops to promote productive conversations between different disciplinary sensibilities and perspectives along three core issues over the next three years.

These three cross-cutting themes are:

Political Economy, History, and International Law - held on June 2-3, 2022

with Professor Susan Marks, London School of Economics

Beauty and Power: Aesthetics, History, and International Law - October 19-20, 2023

with Professor Kate Miles, University of Cambridge

Space and Scale in International Legal History - Spring 2024 (tentative date TBD)

with Professor Luis Eslava, University of Kent

Scholars who would like to present a paper at the second workshop on “Beauty and Power: Aesthetics, History, & International Law” are invited to submit a title and abstract (250─500 words) to before November 25, 2022 (23:59 Geneva Time - CEST). A decision on acceptance of the abstract will be communicated by late October. We expect to host these workshops in person, but hybrid participation might be considered depending on the overall sanitary situation and the guidelines issued by the Geneva Graduate Institute. We are keen on exploring options for a collective publication effort after the workshop. As such, we encourage potential participants to bear this in mind as they prepare their abstracts.

Source: Graduate Institute