LL4J1 Half Unit
Critical Perspectives on Legal Theory
This information is for the 2017/18 session.
Anne Barron NAB6.05
This course is available on the Master of Laws and Master of Laws (extended part-time study). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
This course will be relevant to the following LLM specialisms: Legal Theory.
This course is capped at 30 students. Students must apply through Graduate Course Choice on LSEforYou.
Students must have completed LL4H7 (Foundations of Legal Theory) unless exempted from this requirement by the course convenor.
The aim of this course is to consider aspects of the phenomenon of law that have arguably been insulated from critical scrutiny by traditional jurisprudence. The questions structuring the seminars will accordingly include the following: What are the material conditions for law's existence as a putatively legitimate structure of authoritative norms? What are the connections between law and other modalities of power that are not encoded in the form of sovereignty? What is the relationship between law and violence? What is the relationship between law and freedom? Are the forms of subjectivity and mutual recognition institutionalized by the legal order always linked with emancipatory social change, or can they also be complicit with processes of domination and exploitation? Is law necessary for individual and collective self-determination? These questions are approached from a variety of critical perspectives, including Marxist, post-Marxist, post-structuralist, and post-colonialist perspectives. Accordingly, the course will encourage reflection on the normative grounds for social criticism generally, and in particular on the role that ideas of progress and emancipation can or should play in a critical legal theory.
20 hours of seminars in the LT. 2 hours of seminars in the ST.
There will be a reading week in week 6.
All students are expected to produce one 2,000 word formative essay during the course.
Amy Allen, The Politics of Our Selves: Power, Autonomy and Gender in Contemporary Critical Theory (Columbia University Press 2007); Amy Allen, The End of Progress: Decolonizing the Normative Foundations of Critical Theory (Columbia University Press, 2016); Luc Boltanski, On Critique: A Sociology of Emancipation (Polity Press 2011); Diana Coole and Samantha Frost (eds.) New Materialisms: Ontology, Agency, and Politics (Duke UP 2010); Mitchell Dean, Governmentality: Power and Rule in Modern Society 2nd ed. (Sage 2009); Lois McNay, The Misguided Search for the Political: Social Weightlessness in Radical Democratic Theory (Polity 2014); Andrew Schaap (ed.) Law and Agonistic Politics (Ashgate 2009); Mark Wenman, Agonistic Democracy: Constituent Power in the Era of Globalization (Cambridge University Press, 2013); David West, Continental Philosophy: An Introduction (2nd ed.) (Polity, 2010); Allen Wood, Karl Marx (2nd ed.) (Oxford: Blackwells, 2004)
Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the main exam period.
Total students 2016/17: 7
Average class size 2016/17: 7
Controlled access 2016/17: Yes
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Specialist skills