Monday Roundup

We’ve been so chock full of posts that we haven’t had the time to round them up! Since our last round up, we’ve hosted two symposia:

The LPE in Europe Symposium, with

Ioannis Kampouraksis’s introductory meditation on what might travel the trans-Atlantic wire,

Federico Fornasari’s consideration of the relationship between environmentalism and European corporate law,

and Laura Dominique Knöpfel’s analysis of the way that global value chains have destabilized accountability mechanisms for European corporations.

and

The Care Work Symposium, with

Irene Jor’s account of why and how the National Domestic Worker’s Alliance builds power,

Eileen Boris’s exploration of the relationship between domestic/care work and environmentalism,

Robyn Rodriguez’s contextualization of domestic work and care work in a global racial capitalism framework,

Allison Hoffman’s discussion of the necessity for a policy for long-term care in the United States,

and Noah Zatz’s call for big structural reform of the political economy of care work economy.

 

In addition, we featured posts from:

Sarah Quinn on the way that social problems become financial problems through credit policy,

Joseph Fishkin on the bad arguments against access to medical care as a basic right,

Frank Pasquale on the shift to structural concerns in the “second wave of algorithmic accountability”,

and Tendayi Achiume on reconceptualizing migration as part of the project of decolonization.
In this coming week, we will round out our LPE in Europe symposium. Next week we will begin a new symposium on global value chains. Stay tuned to find out if we will also be able to shimmy in another round up before the new year.

Join LPE at Law & Society 2020

Join LPE at the Law & Society Conference in 2020 as we expand the Law and Political Economy CRN (55)!

There are only two and half days left to apply to the Law and Society Association (LSA) Conference, which will be held in Denver, Colorado, May 28 – May 30, 2020. All paper, panel, and session proposals must be submitted to the LSA by November 20 (11:59pm EST). Please submit your proposal directly to LSA through the portal at https://www.lsadenver2020.org/ As outlined below, we invite you to use our Collaborative Research Network (CRN 55) for Law and Political Economy which will allow us to minimize scheduling conflicts and highlight papers and panels related to Law and Political Economy themes at the conference.

Corinne Blalock (corinne.blalock@yale.edu) and Luke Herrine (luke.herrine@yale.edu) are co-chairing the LSA Conference Committee for the CRN, so please feel free to reach out to them with any questions!

Instructions for Applying to LSA as Part of the Law & Political Economy CRN

1. Background Information on the CRN.  We take a broad view of the scope of Law and Political Economy. All scholars with an interest in law and political economy are welcome to participate in our CRN’s events.  Presenting your paper as part of the CRN’s program generally means a better fit for your paper and a larger audience than leaving it to the larger program committee, and helps foster connections between our participants.

2. How to Join the Law and Political Economy Program for the 2020 Conference.  At the LSA conference in Denver, we hope to continue and expand the conversation with another series of panels and events.  To this end, we have identified several options for CRN members to submit papers and panels:

a. Submit a Complete Panel or Roundtable Proposal.  If you have organized a complete panel or roundtable session, please submit it directly to the LSA and select “CRN 55: Law and Political Economy” from the drop-down menu on the submissions page.  The LSA website details the submission process: https://www.lsadenver2020.org/types-of-submissionsPlease note that selecting CRN 55 is very important because it will help the LSA to schedule our panels in a way that minimizes conflicts. It is wise to include at least 5 paper abstracts in case someone has to cancel before the conference, because sessions with less than 4 papers may be moved to a “roundtable” that may be banished to a terrible room where nobody can hear each other speak.

b. Submit an “Author Meets Reader” Session for a Recent Book.  These sessions can be organized for books with a copyright in 2019 or later and require participation of the author, a chair, and a max of 2 readers.

c. Submit a Paper to be Placed in a Panel on the CRN. If you have a paper to submit, please submit it directly to the LSA and select “CRN 55: Law and Political Economy” from the drop-down menu on the submissions page. LSA will then send all papers under this CRN to us, and we will organize them into panels. The LSA website details the submission process: https://www.lsadenver2020.org/types-of-submissionsPlease note that selecting CRN 55 is very important. If you do not, you will not be included in any LPE panels.

Friday Roundup

The latest in LPE World:

– LPE Blog

Friday Roundup

Greetings, friends!

Recent media that might be of interest:

  • For a look at market fundamentalism through the story of The Economist magazine, check out this article from the New Yorker.
  • book review of Bhaskar Sunkara’s The Socialist Manifesto: The Case for Radical Politics in an Era of Extreme Inequality
  • See the October 31 episode of Doug Henwood’s podcast, covering the ongoing social upheaval in Chile
  • In case you missed it, an extended interview with historian Donna Haraway on “Truth, Technology, and Resisting Extinction”
  • A review of Sandra G. Mayson’s article Bias In, Bias Out, on racially biased algorithmic risk assessments that government actors have used to inform decisions in criminal investigations and proceedings

Additionally, if you’d like a grant to research whether and how inequality affects economic growth and stability, the Washington Center for Equitable Growth has just announced its 2020 Request for Proposals. Their core areas of interest are: human and capital well-being, the labor market, macroeconomic policy, and market structure.

– LPE Blog

Friday Roundup

Here are some things we’re reading:

  • Last week on the blog, we continued our series on labor and the Constitution.
  • This week, we featured highlights from LPE student organizing.
  • These days in Rawls: a review in the New Republic of Katrina Forrester’s book In the Shadow of Justice by Jedediah Purdy, and a review in Commonweal on theology and liberalism by Samuel Moyn.
  • In a review for the Nation, Kate Aronoff skewers the liberal tendency to obfuscate central planning and corporate power in favor of moralizing and self-flagellation.

-LPE Blog

 

Friday Roundup

What’s good in LPElandia?

  • This week on the blog, we featured Allison Tait’s take on teaching Trusts and Estates from an LPE perspective.
  • An interview with political scientist Alex Gourevitch on the history of labor republicanism in the United States over at The Dig.
  • Gabe Winant wrote on the political valence of being in the “professional-managerial class” at n+1.

And an Upcoming ACS Event in DC:

Income inequality has taken center stage in America’s political debate. As the 2020 presidential election heats up, candidates on all sides of the political divide are tapping into feelings of economic anxiety fueled by a disappearing middle class and increased concentrations of wealth. Indeed, the continually rising gap between the rich and everyone else has fueled unrest across the globe and has shown itself to have a corrupting effect on democracy itself. Labor law, antitrust law, and tax law all offer potential avenues to help increase wages, grow the middle class, deconsolidate corporate power, and shrink the racial wealth gap. What policy proposals should be on the table? Would increasing antitrust enforcement help? Could a wealth tax be the answer to growing inequality? What changes to labor law might help reduce income disparities? And perhaps most importantly, what constitutional potholes should advocates make sure to avoid as they go about this work?
Panelists are Lisa Cylar Barrett (Director of Policy at LDF), Lina Khan (Counsel, U.S. House Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law), Anne Marie Lofaso (West Virginia College of Law), and Ganesh Sitaraman (Vanderbilt Law). Nicole Berner, SEIU General Counsel will moderate.
-LPE Blog

Reminder: LPE Conference Proposals due Sept 15

Just a reminder that paper and panel proposals for the LPE Project’s Conference, “Law and Political Economy: Democracy After Neoliberalism” (April 3-4, 2020, at Yale Law School) are due one week from today, September 15. You can find the call for papers here

One clarification: Panel proposals should include a description of the panel as a whole and abstracts for each paper. Each of those pieces can be up to a page in length (e.g., a proposal for a 4-person panel could be up to 5 pages).

We really hope you will join us!

August Break

Thanks to all of our wonderful readers for helping LPE Blog grow so much this year!

We’re taking a break for the month of August to bring you more of that LPE content you crave in September. Next year will be a big one for the LPE world, with launch of the Journal of Law and Political Economy and the LPE Project’s inaugural conference.

With gratitude,

Kate and the LPE Blog team.

Inaugural LPE Project Conference – Call for Papers!

Call for Papers: “Law and Political Economy: Democracy After Neoliberalism”

Over the past several years, a growing group of legal scholars have begun to center questions of “law and political economy” as part of a deliberate effort to enable a critical transformation in legal thought. Joined by the insight that the “the economy” cannot be separated from questions of power, distribution, and democracy, these scholars have advanced new conceptions of antitrust, constitutional law, criminal law, labor law, intellectual property, international trade, and other areas that begin to spell out what it means to reunite what decades of legal scholarship and governance have kept apart. In so doing, these scholars have highlighted law’s role in the perpetuation of racial and gender injustice, the devaluation of social and ecological reproduction, and the violence of the carceral state under capitalism. They have also sought to offer alternative visions for law’s role and concrete legal reforms designed to move beyond neoliberalism and toward a genuinely responsive, egalitarian democracy, with critical attention to the need for power and movement-building as part of any such transformation. There is still, however, much work to be done to map the path of this new scholarly initiative. 

The Law and Political Economy (LPE) Project’s inaugural conference, to be held April 3rd & 4th, 2020 at Yale Law School, will be an opportunity for LPE scholars to come together to identify and develop pressing questions for law and political economy as a movement, and for the current political moment.  Many of us already gather in generative sub-field conversations, so rather than reproduce conversations happening elsewhere and convening panels by topic (“labor,” “trade,” “criminal law”), we hope to organize panels to surface critical analytic questions that must be answered if we are to dislodge the status quo in legal thought. This aim is ambitious, so what follows is longer than the usual CFP. Please see this as an invitation to connect our work through productive lines of critique. Challenge or develop the prompts further as you see fit. 

In hopes of fostering a more open dialogue, we welcome proposals for traditional legal scholarship (law review works-in-progress), as well as shorter pieces (of about 4000-5000 words that might be more suitable for online “forum” publication or other non-law review formats) addressing these difficult questions. In addition to proposals for individual papers (which will be placed onto panels), we also welcome proposals for fully formed panels. Drafts of all papers must be made available/circulated to all participants two weeks prior to the conference. Please submit proposals of no more than a page, clearly indicating whether for an article-in-progress or a shorter piece, to Sarah Harwood at sarah.harwood@yale.edu by September 15, 2019. 

The LPE Project will ensure that cost is not a barrier to participation for all selected panelists. There will not be a conference fee. We will cover all participants’ hotel accommodations. We will also cover travel expenses for anyone without sufficient funding from a home institution. 

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The Tensions in Democracy: Interview with Astra Taylor

Astra Taylor is an independent writer, documentarian, activist, organizer, and musician. She recently completed a project on the concept of democracy, which produced both a movie–What is Democracy?–and a book–Democracy May Not Exist, but We’ll Miss it When It’s Gone. Both treat democracy as a paradoxical and tension-filled ideal that nevertheless must be fought for. Both have many insights that can help left lawyers as we think through the thorny questions that come with the institutionalization of equality and self-governance. Taylor shares some of them in this interview.

LPE: In a recent post for this blog, Samuel Bagg argues that democracy is best understood in terms of what it’s not, or rather, what it’s against. Do you agree? How do you think about arguing for the value of democracy without having an easily articulated concept of what it is? Is history more valuable than philosophy here?

I see democracy as a kind of moving target, something that we can never define definitively and close the case on. But I do think having a minimal definition helps, and I’m happy to start here: the people (demos) rule or hold power (kratos). The problem is that who the people are and how they rule is always open to debate.

Bagg’s approach reminds me of a scene in What Is Democracy? where I’m talking to the political theorist Wendy Brown and I tell her that I really wrestled with making democracy the theme of the film. And it’s true, initially I was open to the idea of jettisoning the word since it’s been so corrupted. But the more reading and thinking I did, the more my perspective shifted. I began to see democracy’s disorienting vagueness as a source of strength, in that the concept can always be contested and reimagined. Researching the book also just drove home the fact that elites have always hated democracy, even as they have attempted to co-opt and contain it—which means there must be something to it. Elites don’t care for democracy because it implies the leveling of hierarchy, including hierarchies of wealth. (Here, I’m also partial to Aristotle’s definition of democracy as rule of the poor, since the poor always outnumber the rich. In my view, even a very minimal definition has a material or class dimension.)

In any case, during the interview Wendy empathized with my plight. We keep coming back to democracy, she says, because the alternatives—or in Bagg’s terminology, all the things democracy is not—are worse. The alternatives to ruling ourselves are pretty unappealing: we could be a ruled by a tyrant, an aristocracy, an oligarchy, a technocracy, and so on. Which is why, as Wendy says, we keep coming back to the word democracy, to the idea of ruling ourselves.

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