The Online Spring Seminar 2021 provides new insights and advances our understanding of the Geography of the International. Seminars are held via Zoom on every Thursday. Every presentation is turned into podcasts and available on Youtube and Website of the Seminar.

Spring Seminar Workshop in Global History and International Law
A New Geography of the International

June 17, 2021

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08.45 – 09.00 am EDT, Boston (14:45-15:00 CEST, Geneva)

Empires and Spaces

09.00 – 10.15 am EDT (15:00-16:15 CEST)


Norberto Ferreras (Universidade Federal Fluminense)

09:00-09:15 am: Mike Borsk (Harvard, Queens’ University): “A time and a place for property: Measuring law and temporality under settler colonialism”

09:15-09:30 am: Aman Kumar (IFIM Law School): “The ambiguous status of India in Westlake’s writings”

09:30-09:45 am: Fekade Alemayhu Abebe (Graduate Institute, Geneva) “Exclusion vs. cooperation in the utilization of transboundary watercourses: The case for decolonizing the Nile Water agreements”


Defining Crimes in a Global Age

10.30 – 11.45 am EDT (16:30-17:45 CEST)


Kerstin von Lingen (University of Vienna)
10:30-10:45 am: Raluca Grosescu (SNSPA – Bucharest): “Transnational advocacy and corporate accountability for major international crimes”

10:45-11:00 am: Ann-Sophie Schoepfel (Harvard, Sciences Po): “Accountability for war crimes in Indochina: The ‘criminalization’ confusion”

11:00-11:15 am: Gruia Badescu (Konstanz University): “Criminalizing the past through spatial practices: Transnational memory place making after 1990”


Internationalisms in Dispute

12.00 – 13.15 EDT (18:00-19:15 CEST)


Andrew Levidis (ANU)
12:00-12:15: Yuan Yi Zhu (Oxford University): “The pre-history of quasi-states”

12:15-12:30: Michele Luppi (Graduate Institute, Geneva): “None can refuse: Italian Fascism and international migration in the interwar period”

12:30-12:45: Negar Mansouri, Daniel R. Quiroga-Villamarín (Graduate Institute, Geneva): “Global welfare, religious solidarity and the “Third Worldist” international institutional reform: The parallel histories of Aga Khan and Santa Cruz”



13:30 – 15.00 EDT (19:30-21:00 CEST)

Charles Maier (Harvard University)
“Reordering the World: the Implicit Norms of Peacemaking”


Concluding words

15:00 – 15:10 EDT (21:00-21:10 CEST)

Anti-Colonial Imaginations of the International

May 6, 2021, EDT: 08:00–9:30 am, CET: 02:00-03:30pm

In this conversation, Vasuki Nesiah from NYU, Sarah Dunstan from the University of London, and Ngozi Edeagu from the University of Bayreuth, three leading female scholars will invite us to delve into the intellectual history of anticolonial imaginations and the shifting boundaries of the world order.

Histories of the Laws of War

April 29, 2021, EDT: 08:00–9:30 am, CET: 02:00-03:30pm

This new Spring Seminar offers a fascinating opportunity to explore the origins and development of international humanitarian warfare and to address the existing gaps and controversies in the methodologies and approaches related to this topic. The speakers are renowned scholars from the University of Melbourne, Tel Aviv University and Christ’s College Cambridge: Boyd van Dijk, Doreen Lustig and Giovanni Mantilla.

New Histories of Capitalism and International Law

April 08, 2021, EDT: 08:00–9:30 am, CET: 02:00-03:30pm

Our online discussion provides an insight into the history of capitalism and international law and the research landscape. The speakers are experts from Harvard, Wellesley College and ANU: Sven Beckert, Quinn Slobodian and Ntina Tzouvala

The Online Spring Seminar 2020 provides new insights and advances our understanding of international law and global history. Seminars are held via Zoom on every Wednesday. Every presentation is turned into podcasts and available on Youtube and Website of the Seminar.

Samurai and Mongols: Japan’s Eurasian Dream

June 10, 2020, EST: 3 pm Boston, Paris: 9 pm

Dr Tatiana Linkhoeva, Assistant Professor of Modern Japanese History at NYU will be presenting her new project, in which she would like to compare the colonial practices of the Japanese and the Russian/Soviet empires in the Mongolian territories (Buriatia and Outer and Inner Mongolia), which were geopolitically highly important and served as buffer zones between Soviet Russia and Japanese-occupied Republican China. Professor Dr Franziska Seraphim, Associate Professor of History and Director of Asian Studies, Boston College, will be providing the commentary.

Nineteenth Century International Law in the Global South, Globalization, and Transformation

June 3, 2020

Indian Princely States and the 19th Century Transformation of the Law of Nations

EST: 11 am / Paris: 5 pm

Dr Prabhakar Singh from Jindal Global Law School will be exploring the transformation of the law of nations through the history of the Indian princely states during the 19th century. International Lawyer Dr Carl Landauer and Parvathi Menon, Adjunct Lecturer in International Criminal Law at the University of Helsinki, will provide the commentary.

International Law and the Precarity of Ottoman Sovereignty in Africa at the End of the Nineteenth Century

EST: 3 pm / Paris: 9 pm

Dr. Mostafa Minawi, Associate Professor in History at Cornell University, will be investigating the precarity of Ottoman sovereignty in the Horn of Africa at the end of the nineteenth century in relation to a growing European global legal hegemony. Prof. Dr. Cemil Aydin, Global History Professor at the University of North Carolina, will be providing the commentary.

Decolonisation and the Making of International Law in the Global South

May 27, 2020

Justifying Force: International Law, Foreign-Policy Decision-Making, and the Use of Force.

EST :  Noon  / Paris : 6:00

Kyle Rapp, Ph.D. Candidate in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Southern California will explore the British 1956 intervention in Suez and the American 1983 intervention in Grenada to define the role of international law in foreign-policy decision-making. Historian Dr. Ned Richardson-Little (Erfurt University), author of The Human Rights Dictatorship: Socialism, Global Solidarity and Revolution in East Germany (CUP, 2020) will provide the commentary.

A History of the Republic of Biafra. Law, Crime, and the Nigerian Civil War

EST :  3 pm  / Paris : 9 pm

Dr. Samuel Fury Childs Daly, historian at Duke University, will present his book A History of the Republic of Biafra: Law, Crime, and the Nigerian Civil War forthcoming at Cambridge University Press. Professor Dr Elisio Macamo, sociologist and member of the Centre for African Studies at the University of Basel, and Dr Lasse Heerten, historian at Ruhr-University Bochum and author of The Biafran War and Postcolonial Humanitarianism, will provide the commentary.

Imperial Origins of the World Order

May 20, 2020 (Boston: 3 pm, Paris: 9pm)

Judging Great Powers: The Permanent Court of Arbitral Justice, the League of Nations, and the Big Four, 1907–1922

Aden Knaap, Ph.D. candidate at Harvard, will be demonstrating that the First World War did not give birth to the idea of a legalist world organization, but that it was the continuation of the pre-war movement for the creation of the Permanent Court of Arbitral, resulting not as a series of parallel movements, but rather as a single Great Power movement, and being reconstituted during the war as a league of nations movement.

In the Ruins of Jupiter: Empire, Parliament, and the Reordering of the World

Andrew Levidis, research fellow at Cambridge, will examine Japanese imperial Diet debates of the interwar period focusing on sovereignty, legal pluralisms, imperial hierarchies, and racial utopian visions of world order in complex legal jurisdictions such as the imperial city of Dalian (neither fully colony nor metropole), international concessions in China, and the Manchurian settler colonial empire.

Boyd van Dijk, lecturer at the University of Amsterdam, will provide the commentary based on his expertise on the history of humanitarianism, international organizations and international law.

Theory and History of International Law, May 13, 2020

The history of international law was long dominated by intellectual history and the spectre of global hierarchies and inequalities. By engaging with the new materialisms and by drawing from unarchived sources, this seminar mirrors a new historiography of global gouvernance.

Beyond Texts? Towards a Material Turn in the Theory and History of International Law

May 13, 2020 (Paris: 10 am, Sydney: 06 pm)

Daniel R. Quiroga-Villamarín from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies will highlight the entanglement between the materiality of global governance and international law. Dr Daniel Joyce, senior lecturer at UNSW Law, will provide the response.

Intersectional Sovereignties: Dr. Aline Chalufour, Woman at Nuremberg – and at Paris, Ottawa, and Dalat

May 13, 2020 (Paris: 09 pm, London: 08 pm, Boston: 03 pm)

Diane Marie Amann, professor at the University of Georgia School of Law, will reveal a new narrative of intersectional sovereignties. Dr George Giannakopoulos (King’s College London/NYU London) will shed light on the imperial transformation of international law.

Across Frontiers and Through Times: Genocide and Crime Against Humanity in Global Perspective

At historiographical crossroads, as the last Holocaust survivors pass on, there has been an outburst of new publications on mass and colonial violence, time has come to look back at the very deep origins of the genocide and crimes against humanity, to engage in discussions on their new horizontal and vertical perspectives, across frontiers and through time.

Genocide in Historical Perspective. The Language of Trangression

May 6, 2020 (EST: 9 am, Paris: 3 pm, Sydney: 11 pm)

Dirk Moses, professor at Sydney University, will present his new work forthcoming at CUP, ‘The Problems of Genocide. Permanent Security and the Language of Transgression.’ Charles Maier, professor emeritus at Harvard, and author of ‘The Unmasterable Past – History, Holocaust & German National Identity,’ will provide the commentary.

Epistemic communities in Exile: Coining ‘Crimes against Humanity’ at London, 1940-45

May 7, 2020 (EST: 12 am, Paris : 6 pm)

Kerstin von Lingen, professor at the University of Vienna, will present her new book on the origins of the crimes against humanity. Barak Kushner, professor at Cambridge, and Dr Sabina Ferhadbegovic from Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena will highlight the prolongation of these debates on Cold War battlefields, in the former ruins of the Japanese empire and in Socialist Yugoslavia

The Nuremberg Moment. International Trial, American Lawyers and the Racial Question

April 29, 2020 (EST: 3:00 pm, Berlin: 9:00 pm)

Guillaume Mouralis, French historian and sociologist at Marc Bloch Center for Social Sciences Research (Berlin) will present his book on the Nuremberg Trial published in 2019 by Sciences Po University Press. Elizabeth Borgwardt, Associate Professor of History and of Law (by courtesy) from Washington University in St Louis who has written widely on the history of international law and human rights, will provide the response.