“Totalitarianism, Law and the idea of Europe”. Conference 15-17 May 2014, University of Helsinki, Finland

FoundLaw Helsinki 2014

Program of the “Totalitarianism, Law and the idea of Europe” conference

15-17 May, 2014, University of Helsinki, Finland

Location: Porthania (Suomen Laki Hall), Yliopistonkatu 3

Thursday 15th 14.00-17.00

14.00-15.00 Keynote lecture

Chair: Jacob Giltaij

Wolfgang Ernst: Fritz Schulz. Reluctant hero – Roman lawyer in Nazi times

Coffee break

15.30-17.00 Roman Law and Romanists under Totalitarian Regimes

Chair: Tommaso Beggio

Valerio Minale: Fascism and Roman Law in Italy: Arangio-Ruiz as a Protagonist of the Purge

Marko Petrak: Roman Law and Ideological Disputes in the Independent State of Croatia (1941-1945)

Hesi Siimets-Gross & Marju Luts-Sootak: The Instrumentalization of the Ancient Roman Law in Totalitarian Regimes. The Example of the Tripartition of status

Friday 16th 09.00-18.00

09.00-10.00 Keynote lecture

Chair: TBA

Nancy Partner: Europe: New Narratives and Misplaced Plots

10.00-11.00 Keynote lecture

Chair: Kaius Tuori

Bo Stråth: The Social Dimension of Identity: an Ignored Connection. A Historical Perspective on the State of Europe and Its Nations

Coffee break

11.30-13.00 The Impact of Nationalism and Totalitarianism in Constitutional Discourse

Chair: TBA

Stephen Skinner: Law as Protection, Law as Power: Legal Certainty and Threats to the State in Fascist Italy and England in the 1920s-30s

David M. Seymour: Law, Rights and Totalitarianism: A Critical Review of the Early ‘Frankfurt School’

Donal Coffey: Nationalism and European Constitutional Catholicism in the drafting of the Irish Constitution of 1937

Lunch break

14.30-16.00 Law and the Idea of Europe

Chair: TBA

Janis Grzybowski & Walter Rech: The Constitution of Europe according to Carl Schmitt and Alexandre Kojève

Tommaso Beggio: The idea of Roman Law as a foundation of Europe after the Second World War in Paul Koschaker’s work

Jacob Giltaij: Fritz Schulz (1879-1957): Reinventing the principles of Roman law

Coffee break

16.30-18.00 Narrativity and Legal History

Chair: TBA

Christopher Tomlins: Historicism and Materiality in Legal Theory

Ville Erkkilä: Making sense of the death of ethics in society. Franz Wieacker and the narrative of European legal thought

Agata Fijalkowski: History, Narratives and Law: an Albanian biography

Saturday 17th 09.00-13.00

09.00-10.00 Keynote lecture

Chair: TBA

Peter Fritzsche: Dismantling the Fascist Self

10.00-11.00 Ideological and Historical Narratives of Civil War

Chair: Ville Erkkilä

Jukka Kekkonen: Civil wars and legal ideologies: the cases of Finland and Spain

Lauri Viljanen: Soviet-Finnish Historiography and Interpretations of the Finnish Civil War in the 1920-1930s

Coffee and light snacks at Porthania

11.30-13.00 Liberal Empires and their Others

Chair: TBA

Thomas Bennett: The production of a creole African law in South Africa

Stiina Löytömäki: International expertise and transnational history: the case of ILO’s conceptualization of slavery and forced labor

Alvise Schiavon: Does the Empire strike again? James Bryce and the EU integration process


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Konferens i Macerata 8-9 juli

Den 8-9 juli ordnar European Society for Comparative Legal History sin tredje konferens. Konferensen äger rum i universitetsstaden Macerata, som ligger nära den italienska östkusten i jämnhöjd med Rom.

En utförlig hemsida med preliminärt program och annan information finns här.

Universitetet i Macerata

Bland annat finns en svensk panel:

Panel 5a: Swedish Legal Models in a Changing Europe

Chair: Professor Kjell Å Modéer, Lund

Doktorand Suus Hopman, Uppsala: The Role of Defence Counsel in Sweden and the Netherlands. A Comparative Historical Study

Professor Mats Kumlien, Uppsala: The Making of Administrative Law(s). Continental and Swedish Traditions in Question

Jur.dr Martin Sunnqvist, Lund: The Principles lex posterior, lex specialis and lex superior – tria juncta in uno?

Professor Bo Wennström, Uppsala: Change – Integrity in Transition


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Konferensen ”Words and Law” i Oxford den 28-29 April 2014

The European Society for Comparative Legal History (ESCLH) tipsar som en spännande konferens i Oxford i slutet av april. Mer information finns här och här.

Law is of course a language. Legal terms do have a specific meaning and we know that lawyers are very proud of that, but the frame of this legal terminology is also helpful in revealing a part of the legal mind. First, the legal terminology builds a sort of wall which shapes the identity of the law. But there is much to say about the different steps of the building of that wall. How did the lawyers choose the words among all the vocabulary; why did they prefer certain words? Why do some of them belong to the very ancient past and have others been invented? Whereas certain terms seem to be classic, a new definition can have transformed their significance. All these choices must be explored and the balance of the underlying forces be evaluated.
Different questions can be asked and different periods be investigated, as the legal terminology was first shaped by the Roman jurists, then by the glossators, then by the intellectuals of the Enlightenment. But specific attention will be given on the second part of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, as then at least in France legal language acts as a controversial topic and a determining criterion of legal science. But specific attention should be paid to the issue of the language. Which language for which law? How can we understand that law can have its own language – Law French, Latin -, and how do vernacular languages manage with it? Finally, the ambition of the study-day is to get a comparative view of the growth of legal terminology. It is usual to point out the differences between civil law and common law. But if legal words are different, can the ways of constructing the legal terminology be compared?


Monday 28 april
Wharton Room, All Souls College
  • 9h-9h30. - Welcome Boudewijn Sirks (All Souls college, Oxford) and Introduction, Nader Hakim (Bordeaux).
Chair: Philippe Roussin (Maison Française d’Oxford).
  • 9h30-10h. - Jean-Christophe Gaven (Toulouse I), Discours juridique et primauté politique en 1789.
  • 10h-10h30. - Anne Simonin (Maison Française d’Oxford), Justine (1791) or the Romance of the Law of the Old Regime.
10h30-10h45. - Coffee break.
Chair: Fernanda Pirié (St Cross college, Oxford).
  • 10h45-11h15 – Paul Brand (All Souls college, Oxford), The technical vocabulary of English thirteenth century law.
  • 11h15-11h45 – Paul Hyams (Cornell University), Conversation and the Common Law in the French of 12th-Century England.
  • 11h45-12h15 – Matt Dyson (Trinity College, Cambridge), Terms of art: conditioning of lawyer, Latinist and layman in the last two centuries.
12h15-14h. – Lunch.
Chair: Mike Macnair (St Hugh’s college, Oxford)
  • 14h-14h30. - Guillaume Tusseau (Science-Po Paris), Bentham v. Judges and Co.: towards a linguistic criticism of legal hegemony.
  • 14h30-15h. - Philip Schofield (University college London): Bentham’s ‘Nomography’ manuscripts.
15h-15h30. - Tea.
Chair: Paul Brand (All Souls college, Oxford).
  • 15h30-16h. - Soazick Kerneis (Maison Française d’Oxford), Law and Language in the legal popular sources (second to fourth century).
  • 16h-16h30. - Thomas Charles-Edwards (Jesus college, Oxford), The Languages of law in early-medieval Ireland: Irish and Latin?
  • 16h30-17h. - Boudewijn Sirks (All Souls college, Oxford), The effect of philosophy on legal language: different experience of identity or just a different expression?
19h-19h30. - Drinks at St Hugh’s College.
19h30. - Dining.
Tuesday 29 April
Chair: Nader Hakim (Bordeaux).
  • 8h45-9h15. - Matthieu Soula (Bordeaux), Définitions et redefinitions de l’auteur à la lumière des principes civilistes XIXe-XXe siècles.
  • 9h15-9h45. - Pierre-Nicolas BarénotComparative views of French and English legal lexicography in the XIX century.
9h45-10h15 Coffee.
Chair: Boudewijn Sirks.
  • 10h15-10h45. – Mike MacnairThe anglisation of the Law French and Latin ordered by the Act of 1731.
  • 10h45-11h15. - Yann-Arzel Marc-Durelle (Paris 13), Lingua nova? Legislator’s words for a new Order, 1789-1794.
  • 11h15-11h45. - Olivier Jouanjan (Strasbourg), La texture du droit ou le droit comme travail de textes.
  • 11h45-12h15. - ClosureBoudewijn Sirks
12h15-13h30. - Lunch.



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Hundra år sedan första världskriget utbrott: var det Tysklands fel?

Hundra år sedan första världskriget utbrott: var det Tysklands fel?

I år är det hundra år sedan första världskriget bröt ut. I Tyskland pågår sen en tid tillbaka en intensiv debatt om huruvida landet verkligen var huvudansvarigt för krigsutbrottet eller inte. Debatten startade efter att en ny bok av cambrigdeprofessorn Christopher Clark kom ut förra året: ”The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914″ (2013). Clark menar att Tyskland inte ensamt kan anses bära ansvaret för kriget, och här kan ni höra om denna pågående debatt (P1 Morgon från den 19 mars 2014): http://sverigesradio.se/sida/artikel.aspx?programid=1650&artikel=5813051

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Konstitutionellt kritiskt dömande

En avhandling av Martin Sunnqvist är nu offentliggjord inför disputation i Lund den 4 april 2014 kl. 10.15.

Konstitutionellt kritiskt dömande

Konstitutionellt kritiskt dömande

Nedan följer en kort sammanfattning på svenska och sedan på engelska.

Under senare år har de högsta domstolarna i Norden i ett antal uppmärksammade avgöranden åsidosatt lagar, som stått i strid med respektive lands grundlag eller med EKMR. En omdebatterad fråga är om domstolarna har gått för långt – eller om de har väntat för länge med att ta på sig denna uppgift.

I denna bok sätts de nordiska domarnas uppgift att kritiskt granska lagars förenlighet med konstitutionella normer in i sitt historiska sammanhang. Med hjälp av en komparativ rättshistorisk metod analyseras domstolarnas förhållande till de andra båda statsmakterna och grundlagarnas förhållande till lagar och andra typer av normer. Analysen tar sin utgångspunkt i de konstitutionella förändringar som ägde rum i Norden år 1809, 1814 och 1849.

Domarnas uppgift att granska att lagar och andra föreskrifter stämmer med konstitutionella normer sammanfattas under begreppet konstitutionellt kritiskt dömande. I fokus står hur domarnas attityder till denna uppgift har förändrats under de senaste två århundradena.

De argument som nu stödjer ett konstitutionellt kritiskt dömande har förts fram i den rättsliga diskussionen i alla de nordiska länderna sedan tidigt 1800-tal. Argumentens genomslag har dock varierat stort mellan de olika länderna och mellan olika tidsperioder. När nu konstitutionella normer inte tolkas bara av den nationella lagstiftaren utan även av internationella organ, har domarna kommit i en ny position: Det är i domstolarna som de konstitutionella normerna förverkligas och ges sitt konkreta innehåll.

In recent years, the supreme courts in the Nordic countries have set aside statutes as contrary to the constitution of the country or to the ECHR. A much debated question is whether the courts have gone too far – or if they have waited too long to take on this task.

In this dissertation, the task of Nordic judges to critically examine the compatibility of legislation with constitutional norms is put in its historical context. With the help of a comparative legal historical method, the relationship between the judiciary and the other two branches of government, and between the constitutions and the other types of norms, is analyzed. The analysis takes as its point of departure the constitutional changes that took place in the Nordic countries in 1809, 1814 and 1849.

The task of judges to review whether legislation is consistent with constitutional norms is in this dissertation called constitutional critical judging. The focus is on how the attitudes of judges toward this task have changed over the past two centuries.

The arguments now supporting constitutional critical judging have been put forward in the legal discussion in all the Nordic countries since the early 19th century. The effect of these arguments has varied between the different countries and between different time periods. Now that constitutional norms are not to be interpreted only by the national legislator, but also by international bodies, the judges have gained a new position: The constitutional norms are materialized in the courts.

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Justitia et Prudentia

Den senaste boken i Olinska stiftelsens serie Rättshistoriskt bibliotek är Justitia et Prudentia. Rättsbildning genom rättstillämpning: Svea hovrätt och testamentsmålen 1640-1690 av Elsa Trolle Önnerfors.

Justitia et Prudentia

Justitia et Prudentia

Användningen av testamenten ökade kraftigt i Sverige under andra hälften av 1600-talet. Testamenten var dock knapphändigt reglerade i lagarna. I och med att testator fördelade arvet, fanns det missnöjda arvingar som hade intresse av att väcka talan mot de mer gynnade arvingarna i domstol. Författaren har undersökt hur Svea hovrätt hanterade dessa mål, och särskilt hur hovrätten ägnade sig åt rättsbildning genom sin rättstillämpning.

Boken kan köpas för 408 kr (inkl. moms) hos Jure.

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Radiotips nu på lördag den 1 mars

Gäst i Ekots lördagsintervju nu på lördag är Svea hovrätts president Fredrik Wersäll, som bland annat ska diskutera domstolarnas ökade makt.

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