Sara Weydner, Institut für Geschichtswissenschaften, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Proposals by: 31.01.2020
Writing transnational history comes with its own set of unique requirements. It is challenging to construct a coherent narrative out of the numerous factors involved. A biographical approach is one possibility to operationalize research on transnational networks and institutions. Biographies reveal individuals’ assumptions and attitudes, help contextualize their debates and explain the historical change of norms in their local context.
This also applies to legal histories investigating interactions, entanglements and the circulation of legal knowledge across national borders. The history of international law is incomplete without transnational actors shaping it. Most prominently, recent scholarship has engaged with the question how émigré jurists (most of them Jewish) have influenced the development of international criminal and human rights law in the mid-twentieth century. This has opened up new perspectives on how the individual experience of exile and juridical concepts have influence each other.
Transnational actors were not only significant on the international level, but developed a domestic momentum as well. Transnational reform movements have influenced the discourse on national criminal law. Zooming in on the individuals who shaped these discussions in transnational settings helps to complicate narratives about the seemingly progressive juridification and humanisation of international relations. Read more and source … (Web)