25 April 2013

ARTICLES: Pruitt on the Rural Landscape/Rosen on Religious Institutions, Liberal States, and Overlapping Spheres

Photo of Lisa R. PruittThe following articles on SSRN might be of interest:

Lisa R Pruitt, ‘The rural lawscape: space tames law tames space’ (forthcoming in I Braverman, N Blomley, D Delaney & A Kedar (eds), The expanding spaces of law: a timely legal geography (Stanford University Press, 2013)):

A fundamental tenet of legal geographies scholarship is that the legal and the spatial are mutually constituting. This chapter investigates that dynamic in contemporary rural contexts in the United States. In particular, I posit that law and rural spatiality are at odds with one another because the presence of law as an ordering, governing, regulating force of state is in tension with the socio-spatial character of rurality. Law seeks to tame or control rural spatiality, but the material (low population density, dominance of nature over the built environment) and associated social characteristics of rural and remote places effectively resist those efforts. Rural spatiality’s features tend to impede the efforts of law’s agents and processes, making for a thinner, less robust legal presence.

Critical and legal geographers, like legal scholars generally, have largely ignored the rural end of the rural-urban continuum, reflecting a rarely acknowledged urban-normativity (not to mention urban hubris). This chapter begins the work of recovering the rural, bringing it into scholarly view in order to broaden our understanding of the diffuse and localized operation of law in rural places. The chapter is thus a step toward theorizing the significance and force of rural spatiality in relation to law and legal processes. But the investigation into the rural lawscape reveals something not only about rural difference, but also about the otherwise obscure nature of law as variegated and variable. Further, looking to the rural margins reveals something about the center because the process by which law differentiates the rural also depicts, at least implicitly, the default urban norm.

Mark D Rosen ‘Religious institutions, liberal states, and the political architecture of overlapping spheres’ (forthcoming, University of Illinois Law Review)

Alongside the contemporary consensus favoring strong protections for individual religious liberty, controversial new claims on behalf of religiously affiliated institutions have been asserted with increasing frequency. They raise difficult questions. For example, are churches entitled to a “ministerial exception” exempting them from federal anti-discrimination laws when hiring and firing ministers? Must Catholic hospitals be exempted from the Affordable Care Act’s “contraception mandate,” which requires that employers provide their employees health insurance that includes contraceptive devices, because use of contraceptives is contrary to Catholic tenets?

JOURNAL: Transnational Legal Theory

(2012) 3:4 Transnational Legal Theory is now published. It includes:

Lex Mercatoria, International Arbitration and Independent Guarantees: Transnational Law and How Nation States Lost the Monopoly of Legitimate Enforcement
Cristián Gimenez Corte

Accidental Cosmopolitanism
Alexander Somek

National Sovereignty and the Constitution of Transnational Law: A Sociological Approach to a Classical Antinomy
Chris Thornhill


Cosmopolitan Pluralism as an Approach to Law and Globalisation: A review of Paul Schiff Berman, Global Legal Pluralism: A Jurisprudence of Law Beyond Borders by Lars Viellechner

ARTICLE: Licari on Rabbinical Arbitration


Rabbinical arbitration has existed for two thousand years, but remains largely unknown. After a long period of decline which lasted until the middle of the twentieth century, it is now in widespread use, and is participating in a renaissance of confessional arbitration throughout the world. Even though it applies fundamental mechanisms which are familiar to us, it is singular in several respects, the most significant being that rabbinical arbitration is not a form of alternative dispute resolution. For members of a Jewish community, it is – or should be – the principal mode of dispute resolution since, in principle, recourse to secular courts is prohibited by Talmudic law. Our study will start with the very nature and scope of this prohibition. Certain aspects of procedure before rabbinical tribunals also merit close examination. After having explored arbitration from an "internal" perspective, i.e. from Talmudic sources, we will examine this from an "external" viewpoint, i.e. from that of the law of nations, in other words the national legal system into which it must be inserted. Such insertion is not straighforward, since even though Talmudic law and the law of nations diverge in many respects by reason of their radically different nature (one is revealed, the other is contingent), in other respects they appear to be on a head-on collision course (witness evidence from women, inheritance rights in particular). This therefore raises questions as to the recognition and enforcement of rabbinical arbitral awards, and on the role of public policy in this respect.

The article was just published in (2013) Revue de l'arbitrage57.

REMINDER: Pluri-Legal Discussion Group

Members might be interested in the excellent Pluri-Legal, an e-mail discussion group on JISC mail.

The group 'is devoted to issues regarding the legal accommodation of cultural, ethnic and religions minorities in Europe.'

It's often the site of informed and invigorating exchanges.

You can join by going to: www.jiscmail.ac.uk/PLURI-LEGAL

SEMINAR: Shah on the Dysfunctional Legal Effects of Secularization

Center for South Asia Logo

I've recently become aware of a seminar delivered by Prakash Shah (Queen Mary) at the University of Wisconsin, Madison (US).

The seminar was 'The Dysfunctional Legal Effects of Secularization: South Asians and Muslim Law in England'. It was jointly hosted by the Global Legal Studies Center and Center for South Asia at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, on 4 April 2013. The audio, and much more, can be found here.


SUMMER SCHOOL: Law Summer School (LSS) Bangalore 2013

We are pleased to announce that the call for applications has been launched for the Law Summer School (LSS) Bangalore 2013.

The LSS Bangalore, which is scheduled from August 25 to September 19, 2013, is an intensive course in international law, organized by the Faculty of Law at the University of Zurich in cooperation with the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) in Bangalore. Admission to the LSS Bangalore is open to 18 to 35 students who have a Bachelor’s or an equivalent degree in law.

The LSS Bangalore offers students an opportunity to intensify their legal knowledge in selected areas of specialization and, simultaneously, to acquire a reflective understanding of the Indian legal system within an intensive intellectual and cultural experience.

The following modules will be taught:

- Religion, Family, Gender and the Law
- European Economic Law
- Climate Change
- Comparative Constitutional Law

Participants may, in principle, enrol for two modules and will be required to take an exam or write a paper for each module. Following successful completion, graduates will be awarded six ECTS credit points per module. In addition, they will receive a Certificate of Attendance. The LSS Bangalore courses are fully recognized by the University of Zurich.

The application deadline is 15 May 2013. For further information and details regarding admission requirements, tuition fees, etc., please visit