• Aug 27, 2011

The Legal Parameters of Slavery: Historical to the Contemporary

  • 9:15 AM
  • Pound Hall, Room 102, Harvard Law School, 1563 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA

The Legal Parameters of Slavery: Historical to the Contemporary is a conference meant to consider the internationally recognized legal definition of slavery by utilizing the historical to inform our contemporary understanding of that term. Centered around the 1926 definition which links slavery to ownership, the speakers will shed light on the evolution of the legal understanding of slavery and consider the manners in which this definition can be mobilized today to fight slavery through prosecutions.

9:15 – Welcome: Orlando Patterson, Harvard Department of Sociology

9:20 – Introduction of the Project and the Speaker: Jean Allain, Queen’s University, Belfast, School of Law

9:30 – Opening Address: Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, Ambassador-at-Large, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking In Persons, U.S. Department of State

10:15 – 10:30 – Coffee

10:30 – 12:00 – Session 1: Chair: James Penner

  • Robin Hickey: “Seeking to Understand the Definition of Slavery”
  • Bernard Freamon: “Definition & Conceptions of Ownership in Islamic Law of Slavery”
  • Rebecca Scott: “Understanding Ambiguities of Slave Status in the 19th Century”
  • Jody Sarich: “Contemporary Considerations of Forced Marriage”

12:00 – 1:15 – Lunch

1:15 – 3:00 – Session 2: Chair: Annie Bunting

  • Joel Quirk: “Slavery in All its Forms: Historical Inquiry as Contemporary Instruction”
  • John Cairns: “Not the True Roman Law”
  • Allison Gorsuch: “To Indent Oneself: Contract and Slavery in the 19th Century Midwest”
  • Richard Helmholz: “Slavery in Medieval ius commune
  • Orlando Patterson: “Slavery, Gender and Human Trafficking”

3:00 – 3:15 – Coffee

3:15 – 5:00 – Session 3: Chair: Jim Stewart

  • Kevin Bales: “Contemporary Slavery”
  • Paul Finkelman: “The Legal Evolution of Slavery in Mainland British Colonies”
  • Stan Engerman: “Slavery as Seen by Slaves”
  • Holly Cullen: “Contemporary International Legal Norms on Slavery: Problems of Judicial Interpretation and Application”
  • Seymour Drescher: “From Consensus to Consensus: Slavery in International Law”

5:00 – 5:30 – Closing Address: Aidan McQuade, Director, Anti-Slavery International

5:30 – End