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Call for papers: Gardens of Justice – Critical Legal Conference 2012

Dear AIDEL members, for sale I circulate this call for papers for a conference organised by Leif Dahlberg in Stockholm next September 2012.

Gardens of Justice – Critical Legal Conference 2012

Stockholm, 14-16 September, 2012

Confirmed plenary speakers:
Marianne Constable (Berkeley)
Angus McDonald (Staffordshire)
Panu Minkkinen (Helsinki)
Sundhya Pahuja (Melbourne)

The theme for next year’s Critical Legal Conference is “Gardens of
Justice”. Although the theme may be interpreted in different ways, it
suggests thinking about law and justice as a physical as well as a social
environment, created for specific purposes, at a certain distance from
society and yet as an integral part of it. The theme also invites you to
think about justice as a concrete metaphor rather than an abstract
concept. Just like any ordinary garden, legal institutions affect both
people working in them and people who are just passing through their
arrangements.

The theme “Gardens of Justice” further suggests a plurality of justice
gardens that function together or that are at times at odds with each
other. There are for instance well ordered French gardens, with
meticulously trimmed plants and straight angles, but that also plays
tricks on your perception. There are English gardens that simultaneously
look natural – un-written – and well kept, inviting you to take a slow
stroll or perhaps sit down and read a book. There are closed gardens,
surrounded by fences, and with limited access for ordinary people. There
are gardens organized around ruins, let’s call them Roman gardens, where
you can get a sense of the historical past, but without feeling threatened
by its strangeness. There are Japanese stone gardens made for meditation
rather than movement. There are zoological gardens, where you can study
all those animal species that do not have a proper sense of justice, no
social contracts, no inequality and social injustice, and no legal
systems. There is, indeed, the Jungle, a real or imaginary place outside
the Gardens of Law.

The conference “Gardens of Justice” invites you to look at law and justice
from a different and critical perspective:
– as a physical and spatializing structure;
– as a place where symbolic orders and disorders become visible and may be
acted out;
– as therapy session;
– as social topography and/or geography;
– as gendered and gendering;
– as pluralistic and (un)fair;
– as political cartography on a global scale;
– as process and phantasy;
– as theatre and/or temple of justice;
– as social utopia and social dystopia;
– as nomos and/or physis.

We encourage you to make your own interpretations of the theme of “Gardens
of Justice”. We invite individual papers and proposals for streams,
roundtables and workshops. Proposals should consist of a short abstract
(max 250 words). Deadline for proposal of streams, roundtables and
workshops is 31 March 2012; and for individual papers 31 May 2012.

The conference venue is Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (KTH) in Stockholm.
The conference is organised by Skolan för datavetenskap och kommunikation,
KTH; Juridiska institutionen, Lunds universitet; and Juridiska
institutionen, Göteborgs universitet.

Organising committee: Matilda Arvidsson, Leila Brännström, Merima
Bruncevic, and Leif Dahlberg.

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