26 November 2010

NOTICE: Law and Society Association Collaborative Research Networks

Members might be interested in the Law and Society Association's Collaborative Research Networks:

Collaborative Research Networks (CRNs) were originally developed, with the assistance of a grant from the National Science Foundation, at the 2000 Annual Meeting in Miami to facilitate international research collaboration in selected topics for presentation at the meeting in Budapest in July 2001.

After those meetings, some CRNs decided to continue and build on their success by expanding their network of scholars. Many new CRNs have since been developed and CRNs have become an significant and integral component in Annual Meetings. Many organize several thematic sessions for each Annual Meeting as well as use the occasion to hold business meetings.

A CRN Coordinator is appointed by the LSA President to coordinate existing CRNs and accept proposals for new ones.

The Networks include:
  • African Law and Society
  • Biotechnology, Bioethics and the Law
  • British Colonial Legalities
  • Cause Lawyering
  • Citizenship and Immigration
  • Civil Justice and Disputing Behavior
  • Collective Human Rights
  • Critical Research on Race and the Law
  • The Cultural Lives of Capital Punishment
  • Culture, Society, and Intellectual Property
  • East Asian Law and Society
  • Feminist Legal Theory
  • Gender and Judging
  • Gender, Sexuality and Law
  • Integrating Gender into Legal Education
  • International Human Rights
  • International Socio-Legal Feminisms
  • Labor Rights
  • Language and Law
  • Law and Counter-Hegemonic Globalization
  • Law and Indigeneity
  • Law and Public-Private Dichotomy
  • Law and Social Movements
  • Law and Social Theory
  • Lay Participation in Legal Systems
  • Law, Society and Taxation
  • Legal Complex and Struggles for Political Liberalism
  • Legal Geography
  • Prisons and Prisoners
  • Private Practice Lawyers
  • Public Opinion and the Courts
  • Realist and Empirical Legal Methods
  • Regulatory Governance
  • Rule of Law, State Building and Transition
  • South Asia
  • Teaching in Law and Society
  • Transnational Legal Orders

CALL FOR PAPERS: Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association (2-5 June 2011)

San Francisco, California USA
June 2-5, 2011
Call for Participation
Proposal Due Date: December 8, 2010

The 2011 Annual Meeting of Law and Society Association, Thursday, June 2, through Sunday, June 5, in San Francisco, CA USA.

Theme: Oceans Apart? Narratives of (Il)Legality in Liminal Locations

Law and Society scholars have consistently challenged both the fit and the applicability of these and other binaries, questioning what citizenship status, class, race, or politics really mean in myriad contexts. However, early in a new decade (and new century), many law and society scholars find ourselves in somewhat of a liminal space, facing whole new sets of border crossings, blurring boundaries, empirical challenges, and conceptual conundra. For example, in the U.S., the continued growth of mass incarceration coupled with the extended reach of criminal law and “civil” municipal regulations have destabilized entire communities, where categories of “incarcerated” and “free” are no longer clearly distinguishable. Around the world, political and legal responses to human migration have broken down lines between immigration law, economic regulation, and criminal justice in complex and often troubling ways.

As a result of these kinds of boundary dissolutions, notions about citizenship, sovereignty, illegality, and rights (to name a few) have all been complicated, challenging a number of longstanding assumptions underlying legal scholarship. How does the law in its many forms help or hurt the resulting conversations? The theme of the 2011 LSA Meeting–Oceans Apart? Narratives of (Il)legality in Liminal Locations–invites us to ponder the shifting and dissolving boundaries around us, empirical and conceptual, and also what they may tell us about law’s relevance, and limitations, in shaping our global future. It is fitting that we begin this exploration in San Francisco, one of the great transnational cities in the world. San Francisco, with its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, is located in a state that borders Mexico (and once was part of that nation), and which was once traversed only by native peoples. This locale is subject to tectonic forces, literal as well as environmental and social, which shape the human uses of law and responses to law. San Francisco constitutes an ideal setting for convening scholars who are concentrating their efforts on these issues.

24 November 2010

NOTICE: (2010) 3 Journal of Civil Law Studies

The Center of Civil Law Studies announces the publication of Volume 3 of the Journal of Civil Law Studies (JCLS). Volumes 1, 2, and 3 of the JCLS are freely accessible online, at www.law.lsu.edu/jcls.

Volume 3 of the JCLS contains the papers of the Saúl Litvinoff Civil Law Workshop Series. The general theme was Civil Law and Common Law: Cross Influences, Contamination, and Permeability.

  • Foreword, Olivier Moréteau & Ronald Scalise Jr.
  • An Introduction to Contamination, Olivier Moréteau
  • Don Saúl Litvinoff (1925-2010), Agustín Parise & Julio Romañach Jr.
  • Foundations for a Revival of the Case Method in Civil Law Education, Fernando M. Toller
  • The Vienna Sales Convention (CISG) between Civil and Common law–Best of all Worlds?, Ulrich Magnus
  • Legal Theory and the Variety of Legal Cultures, Sheldon Leader
  • The Reform of Legal Education in China and Japan: Shifting from the Continental to the American Model, Xiangshun Ding
  • Press Freedom in Indonesia: A Case of Draconian Laws, Statutory Misinterpretation, but still one of the Freest in Southeast Asia, Nono Anwar Makarim
  • Common Law, Civil Law, and the Challenge from Federalism, Santiago Legarr
  • The Principle of Proportionality: The Challenges of Human Rights, Juan Cianciardo
  • Academic Legal Writings by Saúl Litvinoff

23 November 2010

NOTICE: Palmer on the Louisiana Supreme Court

Professor Palmer has just informed me of his 'corrected' study of the Louisiana Supreme Court. Both Louisianians and non-Louisianians will find it interesting. - SPD

Dear Colleagues, I am pleased to inform you that my corrected study has just been published in Global Jurist (Berkeley Press). Please see my covering “note” to the reader below, and you may access the article without charge through the links indicated.

Best wishes, Vernon

New Corrected Study on the Louisiana Supreme Court
and Campaign Contributions
Published in Global Jurist - November, 2010.
Read the Article in Global Jurist

A Note from the Author - Vernon Palmer:

It is the duty of a scholar, I believe, to admit and correct his errors. The important thing is to set the record straight and to advance the truth.

In that spirit I am presenting my latest publication, The Recusal of American Judges in the Post-Caperton Era: An Empirical Assessment of the Risk of Actual Bias in Decisions Involving Campaign Contributors. This new article expands upon and carefully corrects my previous study published in the Tulane Law Review (2008) concerning the influence of campaign contributions on the Louisiana Supreme Court. The previous study was sharply criticized by the Justices who pointed out a number of errors in the data and called for corrections and an apology.

After two years of painstaking research and rechecking, here are my republished results.

The striking thing is that the overall conclusions of the first study remain basically unchanged. Furthermore, the calculations have been independently confirmed and replicated by an outside research institute. Thus the present study rests not only on a strong foundation but it reaffirms the general finding that the Court’s refusal to recuse itself in campaign contributor situations is a threat to the court’s own impartiality and reveals a risk of actual bias.

The findings are summarized on pp. 6-9 of the text. Among other things they show the Court, as a whole, votes for its contributors on average about 65% of the time (in nearly two out of three cases); individually, certain Justices greatly exceed 65%. One Justice voted for his contributors’ side of the case 100% of the time. That percentage reflects a serious risk of actual bias. There is also evidence of similar risk when the Court faced contributors on both sides of the case. The voting of certain Justices was anomalous. They sharply favored the larger of the two contributors, regardless of the side he was on, and though it contrasted with their general voting tendency when no money was involved.

The expanded investigation also brings to light, for the first time, detailed data about the occult and little-known practice of accepting campaign contributions from litigants in cases under deliberation. The data reveal that a number of Justices vote for the position of their sub judice contributors 100% of the time. This has an appearance of impropriety and also reflects a significant risk of actual bias.

© 2010 - Vernon Palmer