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History and Law in European Integration

May 7, 2022

Call for papers and workshop

Place: Oslo, Norway
Time: 10 - 11 November 2022
Deadline for applications: 15 July 2022

Compared to the history of International law, the history of EU law is a young field of research. In contrast to social scientists and legal scholars, historians have only recently entered the field, and the interdisciplinary dialogue is thus comparatively fresh. This workshop intends to keep this conversation going by bringing together researchers to discuss their research on the history of the reception of EU law in the member states. The workshop consists of panel sessions focused on submitted research papers. The workshop will take place in Oslo, on 10-11 November 2022.

Studying the national reception of European Union law often involves adapting the European meta-narrative of “integration” as the primary explanatory framework through which to make sense of the (non-)use of the legal doctrines emanating from Brussels and Luxembourg.

In the same way as a range of recent scholarship has deconstructed the history behind the production of the European meta-narrative of integration-through-law, the aim of this workshop is to contribute to the unravelling and reflection of the concept of integration as an explanatory frame for studying the application of European law in the national legal spheres.

In this line, the workshop aims to discover and develop as the analytical pivot a contextualized understanding of the social structures and actors in each member state. This is on the premise that the entire history of ideas and institutions lives within the existing and inherited social structures irrespective of EU law, and that EU law can ever only be part of the particular struggle situated with each member state – albeit a part.

The workshop aims to study European Union law not as much as a collection of substantial rules, but as a social position from which various actors can mobilize, challenge and alter legal practices and thereby the world around them.

We invite PhD candidates as well as early career researchers to submit abstracts that deal with this overall topic, and who can see themselves within some or more of the following assumptions of the workshop:

- That studying the particular national contexts and historical structures on the grounds of a variety of sources, such as archival documents, published materials, and interviews as well as the usage of different methods and theories are central to understanding the reception of EU law, rather than studying the dogmas of EU law itself,

- That EU law is no sui generis, but a new chapter in a centuries-long struggle around the extent and form of public sovereignty and its limits, in the construction of which law plays and has played a pivotal role,

- That various societal actors, such as practicing lawyers and civil servants have contributed to the emergence and the shaping of EU law and that they have to be analysed in their specific national as well as their historical contexts,

- That studying national receptions does not mean to fall for methodological nationalism but to question analytical boundaries between national, transnational, and European containers.


Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words and a short CV by 15 July 2022.
Notifications of acceptance will be sent by 20 August. Presentations at the workshop should not exceed 20 minutes. Additionally, all accepted panellists are asked to submit their written papers (3000 words max.) by 15 October. The papers will be pre-circulated to allow participants to engage in discussions, and participants will be invited to act as discussants during the program. Based on the feedback received during the workshop, participants will be invited to resubmit their papers as contributions for an edited volume.
The workshop will commence with a keynote speaker (to be announced), and there will be a common dinner for the participants on Thursday 10 November.
Travel and accommodation costs will be covered.


Magnus Esmark, University of Copenhagen

Mala Loth, University of Oslo

Source:  History and Law in European Integration. In: H-Soz-Kult, 01.05.2022, <www.hsozkult.de/event/id/event-117605>.