September 28, 2014

From Comparison to Collaboration: Experiments with a New Scholarly and Political Form

In both the anthropology of law and comparative legal studies, a new direction for research and practice is emerging: collaboration. My forthcoming article in Law and Contemporary Problems analyzes collaboration as a modality of comparative law and legal anthropology and indeed a wider template for social and political life at this moment. I consider the theoretical and practical reasons for its importance at this moment, and its implications for the relationship of comparative law and legal anthropology. I argue that the very ubiquity and mundanity of collaboration discourse and practice in law and policy suggests that a response cannot simply be critique from outside — it must entail doing something with and within this template. I work through these claims through the example of a transnational and transdisciplinary collaborative intellectual project I am directing, known as Meridian 180. The full text appears here.

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