Crosscutting Program: The Concept of Peace in Law, Culture and Society:
Legal scholars often focus on the impact of war on law and democracy. But what about war’s assumed opposite: “peace”? The flip side of war, peace is a concept that is more often assumed than interrogated. As military conflict seems to ebb and flow, lacking sharp breaks between wartime and peacetime, perhaps the concept of peace is an anachronism. This interdisciplinary round-table will take up whether peace is a coherent concept, and the ways the idea of peace figures in domestic and international law.
Serious study of the nature of war, peace and security is underway in other disciplines. This panel seeks to illuminate the way perspectives from other fields can bring deeper critical inquiry to the legal study of war, peace and security. Panelists will include scholars of international law and the law of armed conflict; legal scholars with expertise in history, anthropology, social science, and critical race theory; and a historian who studies peace.
The panel will address:
· What is peace?
o an idea?
o an aspiration?
o a material state of existence?
· How does peace (its existence or nonexistence) affect domestic or international law?
· If contemporary war is less bounded, has the legal and conceptual need for peace dissipated?