The two-day event will be comprised of four to five panels organized around interdisciplinary questions of being beyond the law – of how people across time and space have managed to detach themselves from legal fabrics. It will examine how law accounts for specific bodies and behaviors, and how those bodies and behaviors can render themselves invisible to legal hermeneutics. We want to bring together scholars from a variety of fields to explore the disjunction between law and social practice. This conference asks how much the law really matters. It questions its historical efficacy and, at the same time, notes just how far reaching the law can be.
The conference will feature two keynote speakers: Laura Edwards (History, Duke University), and Sally Gordon (History/Law School, University of Pennsylvania).
This event is hosted by the program in American Studies and co-sponsored by the Center for African American Studies, the Program in Gender/Sexuality, and the Program in Law and Public Affairs.