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Law and Liberation

Critical Notes on Agamben’s Political Messianism

Jayne Svenungsson

that in one respect Agamben does repeat a typical supersessionist gesture, namely in pitting law against grace and thereby counterposing law to liberation. In so doing, Agamben not only fails to do justice to an essential element in Jewish conceptions

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Life at a Tangent to Law

Regulations, ‘Mistakes’ and Personhood amongst Kigali’s Motari

Will Rollason

stupidity. Thus, André could be seen as resisting legality, trying to avoid the problems of visibility and legibility ( Scott 1998 ) that the law imposes and the risk of serious difficulties that it might entail. In Rwandan studies, such accounts of people

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Patrick Cockburn

necessity with the threat of anarchy : But when and how far is the plea of necessity available to one who is prima facie guilty of tort? Well, one thing emerges with clarity from the decisions and that is that the law regards with the deepest suspicion

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Law in Theory, Law in Practice

Legal Orientalism and French Jesuit Knowledge Production in India

Danna Agmon

Letters written by early modern missionaries played an important role in the development of global intellectual networks and inquiry into religion, language, cartography, and science. But the historical ethnography of law has not recognized the role that Jesuits played in creating the field of comparative law. This article examines the writings on law in India by the French Jesuit Jean-Venant Bouchet, who was an important source for Enlightenment philosophes and later Orientalists. It considers Bouchet’s systemic accounts of Indian law alongside his more ethnographic description of his legal encounters in South India, and argues that the practice of conversion and experiences in local legal fora determined and shaped Bouchet’s interpretation of Indian law. In other words, legal scholarship was produced in spiritual, religious, and political contexts, and cannot be abstracted from them.

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The Rule of Law as a Condition for Development Toward Sustainability

Toward a New Legally Oriented Environment at a Global Level

Giovanni Tartaglia Polcini

Cooperation (IDC) is also supporting the rule of law in Africa together with the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) by generating greater awareness and political commitment. So, Italy intends to develop an innovative and up-to-date approach

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Liberty, Law and Leviathan

Of Being Free from Impediments by Artifice

Lena Halldenius

The argument in this article is that Hobbes' theory of freedom in Leviathan allows for four ways of being free to act - corporal freedom by nature, freedom from obligation by nature, the freedom to disobey and the freedom of no-rule - each corresponding to a particular absence, some of which make sense only in the civil state. Contrary to what some have claimed, this complexity does not commit Hobbes to an unarticulated definition of freedom in tension with the only one that he explicitly offers, which is that freedom consists of nothing other than the absence of external impediments of motion. To be free from obligation is to be free from impediments. As a political subject in the state, the power that is blocked or compelled by law is a person's power to perform artificial acts as her will directs. Laws and prior commitments are external impediments that block or compel making an artificial, institution-dependent act either impossible or unavoidable. The bonds of law bind artificially yet corporally, given that the power that makes them is, quite literally, an external body that moves at will.

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William A. Quinn

…incerto tempore ferme incertisque locis spatio depellere paulum [at random times and places they shift a bit] Lucretius, De Rerum Natura (II, 218–219) Chaucer’s ‘The Man of Law’s Tale’ is strange. In the Riverside edition, Larry D. Benson

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Inside and Outside the law

Negotiated Being and Urban Jouissance in the Streets of Beirut

Ghassan Hage

of what gives Lebanon’s periodic civil wars their particularly chaotic form. “Shoo hal fawda b’hal balad!” (What a chaotic nation this is!), “Ma fi nazam b’hal balad!” (There is no law and order in this nation!), and “Ma fi dawleh!” (There is no state

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Niki Megalommati

. Available sources—imperial law, histories and chronicles, hagiographies, and archival documents—were written mainly by males; female-authored texts are rare in Byzantine literature. Social stratification also operates against attempts to create a consistent

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Editorial

Reinventing Anthropological Topics

Soheila Shahshahani

, judges, tribal sheikhs, Islamic leaders, fighters and refugees. Her problem, which she poses very clearly, is the opposing views of secular persons and those upholding shari'a laws and regulations. It is very good that this problem, which is felt all