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The University of Southampton
Southampton Law School

Take a Walk! Space, Bodies, Law Seminar

14 March 2012
Law building, Staff room 2055

Event details

Centre for Law, Ethics and Globalisation (CLEG) seminar

Law’s spatial turn has not yet affected the way law is taught. Law’s spatial turn is the ethical turn par excellence, itself building on the textual turn but transgressing it. Spatial turn is founded on post-structuralism and deconstruction but takes dynamically into consideration the emplacement of the body within space, the spatial dimension of the law and the parameters that space brings into the understanding of the law. These are not simply ideas and practices about diversity and locality/community, but more significantly concepts on being lost, on having no predetermined direction, on not being able to escape. Space brings to law an entirely different dimension to that of time, indeed a more violent and unsettling one that cannot be assuaged by the in-built legal concepts of waiting, moving towards a temporal horizon of justice. This sort of dimension has to be filtered into the law and its teaching. Law’s spatiality is fleshed out through simple but targeted practices that revolve around walking, being emplaced, understanding one’s spatial presence. This ties up with the concept of spatial justice – a misunderstood concept that so far has failed to take into consideration space and dealt solely with geography. While these distinctions will be analysed, the focus of the paper is the way law and its academic teaching is transformed by the radical nature of a spatial justice that demands a re-emplaced corporeality in relation to ‘here’ rather than ‘now’. Methodologically, the chapter is a Deleuzian radical conceptualisation of legal space and its modes of academic communication.

Speaker information

Professor Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos , University of Westminster. Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos, LLB, LLM, PhD, is Professor of Law & Theory, University of Westminster and Director of The Westminster International Law & Theory Centre. His research includes critical theory, phenomenology, autopoiesis, environmental law, European law, law and literature, gender studies, law and art. His edited volumes Law and the City (2007) and Law and Ecology, and his monographs Absent Environments (2007) and Niklas Luhmann: Law, Justice, Society (2009) are published by Routledge.

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