Go On! Update, ICC Summer School 2015 (deadline 30 May)

We’ve posted previously about this year’s ICC Summer School from 15-19 June 2015 at the Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway. Here is an update, with the full list of faculty:

The ICC Summer School at the Irish Centre for Human Rights is the premier summer school on the International Criminal Court, the world’s permanent institution for the trial of international crimes. This year’s ICC Summer School will take place from 15-19 June 2015 at NUI Galway, Ireland. The Summer School comprises a series of intensive and interactive lectures over five days given by leading academics and legal professionals working at the International Criminal Court. Participants are provided with a detailed working knowledge of the establishment of the Court, its structures, operations, and applicable law. Specific topics covered include international crimes (genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity & aggression), jurisdiction, modes of liability, the role of victims and prosecutorial discretion. This year’s Summer School will include a special session on Palestine and the International Criminal Court, which will involve the participation of the Palestinian Ambassador to Ireland, Ambassador Ahmad Abdelrazek. The Summer School is suited to postgraduate students, legal professionals, journalists and staff of civil society or intergovernmental organisations.

The 2015 ICC Summer School faculty includes:

  • Professor William Schabas – Middlesex University & Irish Centre for Human Rights
  • Professor Kevin Jon Heller – School of Oriental and African Studies, London
  • Dr. Fabricio Guariglia – Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court
  • Dr. Mohamed M. El Zeidy – Pre-Trial Chamber II at the International Criminal Court
  • Dr. Rod Rastan – Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court
  • Professor Ray Murphy – Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway
  • Professor Don Ferencz, Visiting Professor, School of Law, Middlesex University; Research Associate, Oxford University Faculty of Law Centre for Criminology
  • Dr. Kwadwo Appiagyei Atua – University of Ghana and University of Lincoln
  • Dr. Michael Kearney – School of Law, Sussex University
  • Dr. Noelle Higgins – Senior Lecturer, Law Department Maynooth University
  • Ms. Salma Karmi-Ayyoub – Barrister, London
  • Dr. Nadia Bernaz – School of Law, Middlesex University
  • Mr. John McManus – Canadian Department of Justice
  • Professor Megan A. Fairlie – Florida International University
  • Dr. Mohamed Badar – Northumbria University, United Kingdom
  • Dr. Shane Darcy – Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway

The closing date for registrations is 30 May 2015. The registration fee (€450) includes all course materials, all lunches and refreshments, a social activity and a closing dinner. The registration fee also includes a complimentary copy of: William A. Schabas, Introduction to the International Criminal Court (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011, 4th ed.).

To register and for more information, please visit: http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/index.asp?Conference=405.

Should you have any queries, please email: iccsummerschool@gmail.com.

Go On! New LLM in International Justice at Maynooth University

Starting in September 2015, Maynooth University will offer an LLM in International Justice to law graduates and graduates of cognate disciplines (e.g. international relations, social studies, sociology, politics, and other inter-disciplinary degrees which have a focus on the international community order).

Further information can be found on the program’s website and in this brochure: LLM Justice Flyer

Please contact Dr Noelle Higgins, the Programme Director, with any queries, at noelle.higgins [at] nuim.ie.

Write On! Call for Papers: ‘Taming Power in Times of Globalization: What Role for Human Rights?’ (deadline 15 March)

The Irish Centre for Human Rights, National University of Ireland, Galway, has issued a Call for Papers for their conference-workshop “Taming Power in Times of Globalization: What Role for Human Rights?” The conference will take place Nov. 30-Dec. 1, 2015. From their announcement:

The ways power is exercised today at the global level seems to be qualitatively different, demanding new responses from international law and other relevant disciplines. In particular, it seems that today the exercise of power at the global level is less controllable, less subject to restraints and checks than some decades ago. Global governance, international or global constitutionalism, legal pluralism are terms indicating some of the ways developed in the scholarship to comprehend, analyse and respond to challenges posed by the contemporary forms of exercise of power at the global level.

Human rights are featured prominently in the Western thought as hallmarks of protection of individuals against the arbitrary exercise of power.

Human rights form today a core of any Western constitutional order. However, the role of international human rights as mechanisms for controlling exercise of power at the global level is articulated only rudimentarily. The conference aims at providing a forum for discussion about the place of human rights in current discourses on globalization. Instead of assuming that human rights are a proof of the possibility to control power at the global level, the conference aims at examining this premise from a variety of perspectives.

The following are some of the questions the organizers would like to see addressed:

  • What human rights are part of international constitutional order?
  • How legal pluralism/ global governance/ various theories of constitutionalism conceive the role of human rights as a mechanism for limiting exercise of power at the global level?
  • What are the consequences of different answers?
  • How precisely, human rights as guarantees against arbitrary exercise of power, function within different visions?
  • Are there any alternatives available to the human rights language?
  • Can other mechanisms of control over arbitrary exercise of power at the international / global level be imagined?

Contributions can address these and other related issues from a variety of perspectives, both theoretical and empirical. Critical and interdisciplinary approaches are particularly encouraged.  Contributions examining relevant issues from a historical perspective, or integrating experience of non western legal traditions are also welcome.

Contributions will be selected following a peer-review process. The selection will be based on the following criteria: relevance to the conference theme, originality, and overall coherence of selected papers with a view of producing engaging discussion. The organizers have publication plans for the presented papers. The precise format of publication will be discussed during the conference. Therefore, all selected contributions must be original and not published elsewhere. All presenters will be required to submit full papers in advance.

Accommodation for presenters will be provided. There are limited funds available to cover travel expenses. Please indicate while applying whether you would like to be considered for reimbursement of travel expenses and indicate if possible the approximate amount.

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Work On! Two posts at the National University of Ireland Maynooth Department of Law

National University of Ireland, Maynooth/Ollscoil na hEireann, Ma Nuad, Department of Law
Professor/Senior Lecturer in Law (Two Posts)

The Department of Law at NUI Maynooth invites applications for two Professor/Senior Lecturer positions in law.

ABOUT THE DEPARTMENT OF LAW: The Department of Law is the youngest in Ireland and offers a number of popular undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes educating over 400 students. The Department places a very strong emphasis on research and faculty regularly publish in leading international academic journals. The Department of Law has particular research strengths in the areas of human rights and social justice, global business perspectives, and legal theory. The Department is now seeking to recruit to a number of key senior academic posts to build on its reputation, increase its capacity to grow both undergraduate and postgraduate student numbers, and to enable the further development of its programmes to provide a legal education that is of outstanding quality and global in its outlook.

JOB DESCRIPTION: NUI Maynooth is committed to a strategy in which the primary University goals of excellent research and scholarship and outstanding education are interlinked and equally valued. Professors/Senior Lecturers will be expected to provide significant intellectual leadership, through a demonstrated commitment to both education and research, and also to contribute to the effective leadership and management of the Department.

The person appointed will have an excellent record of teaching and research. He/she will have an established track record of high-quality publications that will contribute to, and enhance, the Department’s areas of research strength. He/she will be expected to make a strong contribution to the teaching, research and profile of the Department of Law and to play a leadership role in the development of teaching and learning, and research, strategies.

JOB QUALIFICATIONS: The appointee will have an established and substantial record of research and teaching to the highest international standards and will have demonstrated the capacity for academic leadership at institutional, national or international level.

FURTHER INFORMATION: It is envisaged interview will take place week commencing Monday, 16 June 2014.

Further information (including application procedure) should be obtained from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth current vacancies website: http://humanresources.nuim.ie/vacancies.shtml

Pre-Oscars reread of Philomena’s real story

seanross2Serendipity found my students and I rereading the unvarnished story of Philomena Lee this week, just before the Hollywood film Philomena competes in Sunday’s Academy Awards.

The film is lovely, warmed by on-screen chemistry between Judi Dench, who plays Lee, and Steve Coogan, who plays journalist Martin Sixsmith. Bits of humor between them smooth the sharp edges of Lee’s search for the child she’d given up for adoption many years earlier.

The real story is a bit more raw: “The Catholic church sold my child” reads the headline of a 2009 news article by Sixsmith, published when his book on Lee was released in England. The article recounts how a 1950s Irish family sent Lee, then 18, pregnant, and unmarried, to a Mother and Baby Home at a Tipperary nunnery. There she gave birth. There too she was compelled to put in three years’ labor, and, eventually, to give up the son she’d helped care for till he was a toddler. Sixsmith writes:

‘Early on in the search I realised that the Irish Catholic hierarchy had been engaged in what amounted to an illicit baby trade. From the end of the second world war until the 1970s, it considered the thousands of souls born in its care to be the church’s own property. With or without the agreement of their mothers, it sold them to the highest bidder. Every year, hundreds were shipped off to American couples who paid “donations” (in reality, fees) to the nuns. Few if any checks were made on the suitability of the adopting families – the only condition laid down by Archbishop McQuaid was that they should be practising Catholics.’

seanrossSilence enveloped the decades-long practice. Even International Child Law, the circa-2010 British text that we’re using in my Children & International Law seminar, makes no note of it: though these out-of-Ireland adoptions occurred just an island away, the book’s chapter speaks of 1950s intercountry adoption solely in the context of U.S. adoptions of children born in wartime Korea.

This may change, as Lee has helped found The Philomena Project, committed to push, in Ireland and in the United Kingdom, for legislation that would ease access to adoption information. (credit for undated photos, of the Mother and Baby Home where Lee was placed, courtesy of the Adoption Rights Alliance, which is working with the Project)

The Project calls for justice along the lines of the efforts begun in relation to another tragic Irish institution of the era, the Magdalene Laundries, the subject not only of a 2002 film, but also of a 2011 report by the U.N. Committee Against Torture. To date those efforts have resulted in an official state apology regarding the Magdalenes practices – though not yet the actual award of promised reparations, as a recent post in the Human Rights in Ireland blog detailed.

(Cross-posted from Diane Marie Amann)

Apartheid and the Dunnes Stores workers strike, 1984-1987

Picture via historyireland.com In 1984, Mary Manning, an employee of Dunnes Stores, one of Ireland’s largest supermarkets, refused to check out an Outspan grapefruit. She was upholding a Union directive that none of its members would handle South African fruit or vegetables in protest to the apartheid regime. Manning was suspended immediately, bringing about a strike that was to last almost three years. The picketers lived on £21 a week for the duration of the strike, with some even losing their homes as a result. The strike ultimately ended in a ban imposed by the Irish government on the import of all products from apartheid South Africa. It is a fascinating chapter in the history of apartheid. In the words of one of the strikers: “Twelve workers got government to change the law. Even one person can make a change.”. There is a full interview with Cathryn O’Reilly, one of the Dunnes Stores workers, here. Some of Mary Manning’s thoughts on Mandela’s passing can be found here.