Thursday, December 29, 2016

South Asia Roundup

December was an exciting month in India for South Asian legal history. 

The big event was the 4th biennial Law and Social Science Network (LASSNet) conference in Delhi, December 10-12, 2016. "Thinking with Evidence: Seeking Certainty, Making Truth" was organized by Jawaharlal Nehru University’s Pratiksha Baxi and her team. The conference was a truly impressive organizational feat in the midst of what has been a very hard year for everyone at JNU (read about sedition charges filed against student leaders for "anti-India" statements here, here, and here). Among the highlights were panels with a historical take on the personal law system; sexuality, gender identity and sedition; detectives; colonial and post-colonial legalscapes; judges' views of history; and constitutionalism. There were also memorial sessions dedicated to Nasser Hussain, Dwijen Rangnekar and Priya Thangarajah, three dynamic scholars of South Asian legal studies who died tragically in recent years. Here is the program.

A brand new peer-reviewed journal was launched at the LASSnet conference. The Indian Law Review, published by Francis and Taylor, is an academic-led, double-blind, peer-reviewed journal that aims to publish top-quality scholarship on Indian legal studies. Its team of editors is stellar. Here's how to submit an article. The ILR welcomes legal historical work. It could give the Law and History Review a run for its money on South Asian legal history.

In the run-up to LASSNet, another event took place in south India. The "South Asian Legal History, Beyond Boundaries" workshop took place at NALSAR University of Law in Hyderabad on Dec.7-8, 2016. It involved about twenty scholars,and was co-sponsored by NALSAR and the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History (Frankfurt). Panel themes included: legal and economic administration during the Mughal period, the history of legal transfers to and from India, conflict regulation from local to colonial, the legal history of minorities, and colonial governance in comparative perspective.

All in all, a real finale to 2016 for South Asianists!

H/t: South Asian Legal History Resources