One Law for All? (Workshop)
One Law for All? (Workshop)Termin
29. - 30.10.10Ort
HU Berlin, Friedrichstr. 191/193, R. 5008Downloads (PDF)
Law and ‘Modernization’ in Comparative Global Perspective: Universal claims, local implementations.
Since the late 18th century law-makers in various parts of the globe have increased their efforts to unify their respective local judicial systems in accordance with Western models. Such measures have usually been aimed not only at a ‘modernization’ of judicial systems but also at a much wider reform of the entire social structure of a given society.
This insight, however, raises more questions than it answers. Given the fact that legal reality in Western Europe was highly heterogeneous, how exactly did individual legislators imagine ‘modernization’? Which practical effects did the law, intended as a means of such ‘modernization’, have in different cultural contexts? How was it received and interpreted by local actors? Which ambiguities and conflicts emerged between parallel forms of justice? This workshop seeks to shed light on these questions by focusing on the tensions between the universal claims of the legislators and the implementation of law at the local level.
Legal history has, so far, tended to examine the changing contents of law. Little attention has been paid to the cultural contexts of the introduction and implementation of new legal systems – their institutional conditions, the representations and worldviews they contain, and their ceremonial enactment. For this reason, the workshop will discuss, in particular, the possible contributions of such a ‘new cultural history of law’. The cultural contexts and conditions in which new legal systems have been introduced, seen from a comparative global perspective, will be at the heart of this workshop.
A workshop held by the Collaborative Research Centre’s study group 'Law'.