International Short Banner

Program Schedule


Thursday, November 8, 2007
Registration and reception
Berger Atrium, Cornell Law School

Friday November 9, 2007
Mancuso Amphitheater (Room G90), Cornell Law School

8:30-9:00 a.m.
Registration and Continental Breakfast at the entrance to the Mancuso Amphitheater

9:00 a.m.
Welcome remarks (Annelise Riles, Mitchel Lasser and Dean Stewart Schwab)

9:15-10:45 a.m.
Panel I:
What does “Culture” Mean to our Comparative Law Projects?

Chair: Annelise Riles (Cornell) 
Dominick LaCapra (Cornell Departments of History and Comparative Literature): "Mutations of the Nature/Culture Binary"
Mitchel Lasser (Cornell):  "Culture as a Heuristic Device"
Amalia Kessler (Stanford):  Between Functionalism and Essentialism:  Culture as Historically Contextualized Social Practice
Naoki Sakai (Cornell Departments of Asian Studies and Comparative Literature)
Jim Whitman (Yale):  Not "Culture" but "Values" 

This panel seeks to ground the discussion by asking how the notion of culture has informed the particular research projects of the panelists. Is culture a useful analytic concept or tool for comparative legal research? If so, what cultures might be studied and how are they to be grasped? Does culture stand outside of legal systems, are legal systems part of culture, or are legal systems a culture of their own? Would a truly culturally informed mode of analysis render comparative work (as opposed to research of foreign law) impossible?

10:45-11:00 a.m.
Coffee Break

11:00.-12:30 p.m.
Panel II:
Professional Cultures

Chair:  Cynthia  Bowman (Cornell)
Anna Gelpern (Rutgars Newark):  "Culture, Identity, and Contract Boilerplate"

Miriam Aziz (Sienna/ Cornell):  "The Impact of Professional Networks on the Evolution of European Union (EU) Law"
Francesca Bignami (Duke)
Maximo Langer (UCLA):  "Revolution of Latin American Criminal Procedure:  Diffusion of Legal Ideas from the Periphery"

Can legal professional subgroups – be they academic, judicial, professional/ lawyerly, governmental, social, or other – be understood as cultures in their own right? What role do they play in defining or shaping the legal systems and/or legal cultures in which they work? How can or do these professional subcultures function as agents for or against legal change, either in particular substantive areas (e.g., criminal, administrative or constitutional law) or in a more generalized, conceptual and systemic sense? What role, if any, is currently being played by transnational networks of such professional subcultures?

12:30 p.m.
Lunch - Berger Atrium, First Floor, Cornell Law School

2:00-3:30 p.m.
Panel III:
Globalization, Legal Transplants and Culture

Chair: Eduardo Penalver (Cornell)
George Bermann (Columbia):  "Americanization and Europeanization of Law:  Are there Cultural Aspects?"
Mathias Reimann (Michigan):  "Legal Transplants and Transnational Legal Culture"
Julie Suk (Cardozo):  "Globalization and Legal Transplant:  Lessons from Implementing the EU Race Directive"

What is or should be the relationship between globalization, legal transplants and culture? Is globalization to be understood as a threat to, or even the death of, culture? Are legal transplants to be conceived instead as the seeding, creation or spread of a particular kind of culture? What role, if any, does volition play in legal globalization? How should agents of legal transplants understand their relation to local and global cultures? Can culture be accounted for ex ante in the practice of transplantation? How might a culturally inflected method of comparative law affect the process of globalization or transplantation?

3:30 p.m.
Coffee Break

3:45-5:15 p.m.
Panel IV:
The Culture of Public & Private

Chair:  Robert Hockett  (Cornell) 
Daniela Caruso (B.U.):  "The Cultures of Private Law"
Ralf Michaels (Duke): "The Return of the Private"
Chantal Thomas (Cornell):  "Competing Cultures of Law and Development in Investor-State Disputes"
Mattias Kumm (NYU):  "The Constitutionalization of Private Law:  Conceptual, Institutional and Cultural Variables"

In recent years comparative lawyers have turned new theoretical attention to the relationship of public to private legal domains. One set of projects tracks the reinvigoration of public law institutions through new kinds of national, regional and global institutional arrangements. Another set of projects takes the exact opposite tack, and celebrates the theoretical and methodological vitality of private law, as private law. Both projects build upon, but also depart in interesting ways from longstanding arguments in American legal thought about the inseparability of public and private—arguments that have always had less salience to civilian lawyers. Both projects also share a sophisticated sensibility toward the particular features of the cultures of public and private law in different locales. What is at stake in this conversation?

7:00 p.m. Reception
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University

8:30 p.m. Society Dinner
Willard Straight Hall, Cornell University

Saturday, November 10, 2007: Mancuso Amphitheater (Room G90), Cornell Law School

7:30 a.m.
Continental Breakfast at the entrance to the Mancuso Amphitheater

8:00-10:30 a.m.
ASCL Business Meeting

10:30-12:00 p.m.
Panel V:
Culturally Inflected “Law and Development”

Chair: Trevor Morrison (Cornell)
Kevin Davis (NYU):  "Taking the Measure of Law:  The Case of the Doing Business Project"
Ugo Mattei (Torino/ Hastings):  "Cultural Inflected Law and Development.  A New Echelon of Western Arrogance"
Frank Upham (NYU):  "From Deng to Demsetz:  Speculations on the Implications of Chinese Growth for Property Theory"
Gregory Alexander (Cornell):  "Can Constitutions be Transformative? The Role of Background Traditions and Culture"

What are the pressing questions for a cultural approach to legal change? Is culture necessarily the anti or flip side to economics? How does a culturally inflected analysis of legal change relate to other ways of thinking about law and development problems such as functionalism, doctrinal analysis, transplant hypotheses, law and economics, common core analysis, and more? Does a cultural analysis ask different kinds of questions when thinking about the nature of law and legal change in the Global South or in non-European contexts? How should we take into account concerns with inequality and hegemony in the diffusion of legal norms?

12:00-1:00 p.m. Lunch
Berger Atrium, First Floor, Cornell Law School

1:00-2:30 p.m.
Panel VI:
Law, Culture and Non-legal Disciplines

Chair: Dick Buxbaum (Boalt)
Paul Kahn (Yale):  Law and Theology
Nicholas Kasirer (McGill):  "Translating the 'patrimoine': A Foundational Legal Concept, Symbolic Legal Form and the Embodiment of the Frenchness in French Law"
Annelise Riles (Cornell):  "Legal Fictions: On the Comparative Study of Legal Knowledge
Teemu Ruskola (Emory):  "China, For Example"

Cultural analysis has long been the province of the humanities and humanistically inflected social sciences. These disciplines provide a number of (at times conflicting) models for theorizing comparison and the nature of law. This panel presents examples of comparative legal work that incorporates sophisticated theoretical paradigms and methodological innovations from anthropology, history, literature, political theory,and science studies in new ways.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

8:00—1:00 p.m.
Cornell Workshop on Chinese, Japanese and Korean Online Resources
(Room G85, Cornell Law School)

9:00—3:00 p.m. 
Finger Lakes Wine Country Tour and Lunch

Cornell University Campus