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The University of Southampton
Southampton Law School

Piracy and Jurisprudence - an interdisciplinary workshop Event

21 - 22 June 2013
65/1097 Avenue campus

For more information regarding this event, please email Sue Smith at .

Event details

An interdisciplinary workshop organised by the Centre for Law Ethics and Globalisation (LEAG), University of Southampton Law School; English at the University of Southampton; and the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute.

Adored and detested, pirates evoke moral and ethical ambivalence: and piracy as a term of law has always been exceptionally vulnerable to political agendas. More precisely, it has always been a term of both high imperial/hegemonic art, and significant radical potential. As such, it is a word with a weighty history of complex moral and ethical loading and reloading. But it always invokes a refusal of juridification: it is a term that defines the margins of criminal and international law as juridical categories.

Pirates are a recurring symbol of the ocean as a space beyond jurisdiction and the juridification of thought itself: as such, both known and hidden pirates arguably estrange historical thinking. Piracy is a form of violence that challenges discourses that attempt to shore-up spaces that assert a moral monopoly on violence: and piracy is a form of textual transgression that challenges the very ability of the law to draw boundaries. But even as piracy is a form of violence, it constitutes a challenge to the very violence involved in writing itself. The relationship between piracy and the law directs us to question the constitution of the human condition itself.

This workshop will aim to explicate and explore the multiple significations of piracy, and to track the implications of these significations for both abstract and practical notions of justice. Always pursuing a long view of legal histories, the commitment of the workshop and the publication are to disciplinary and geographical diversity, and to methodological innovation. The workshop will tussle with the distinctiveness and boundlessness of piracy as a ‘category’ (that refuses categorization).

This interdisciplinary workshop is hosted and kindly sponsored by the Faculty and Business, Law and the Arts and the Humanities, University of Southampton; the Centre for Law, Ethics and Globalisation (LEAG) and the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute (SMMI).

For more details relating to the workshop itself please contact:
Oren Ben-Dor (Law)
Stephanie Jones (English)
Alun Gibbs (Law)
For further details regarding administration and accommodation please contact:
Sue Smith (Humanities)

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