CFP: World Literature and Law

Workshop on World Literature and Law

Date: 13th and 14th August, 2023

Venue: Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York

Organized by the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and the University of Hong Kong

How might we situate the interdiscipline of Law and Literature in a world where countries are increasingly connected through technological networks and trade ties on the one hand, and increasingly distant as geopolitical tensions and ideological differences become ever more apparent, on the other? In recent years, the ‘global turn’ has become a key term in the humanities, and scholars of international law and literature, human rights and literature, and postcolonial law and literature, amongst others, have investigated how we might analyze legal-literary relations beyond national or regional boundaries. 

This workshop explores what it would mean to approach Law and Literature in a more expansive, global frame by bringing it into conversation with the study of World Literature, and by fostering international dialogue amongst jurists, literary scholars, historians, and other scholars in the interpretative humanities. It asks how legal ideas travelling into new environments become registered by literary texts, what legal-cultural consequences arise when texts cross national boundaries, in what ways emergent technologies might disrupt existing legal-literary relations, and how practices of translation might impact upon longstanding discussions about interpretation within Law and Literature. 

We welcome proposals on the following (non-exhaustive list of) topics:

  • The role of literature and art in conceptualizing and challenging borders, asylum, and entrance
  • The circulation of legal ideas and texts into new literary contexts
  • Linguistic and cultural translations of law
  • Transnational writers and law
  • Literary citations in diverse judicial settings
  • Indigenous notions of literature and law
  • Overlaps and distinctions between cognate terms such as ‘the globe’, ‘the world’, ‘the planet’, and ‘the transnational’
  • Literary and legal cosmopolitanism

Proposals (max 150 words) should be sent to Marco Wan and by or before April 1st. Papers on the Global South are especially welcome.