Please be advised that the 2020 edition of the summer school has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Law and Humanities Summer School is an intensive one-week study programme, to be held at the University of Lucerne, Switzerland, from 15 to 19 June 2020. The school is co-organised by:

  • Institute for Interdisciplinary Legal Studies – lucernaiuris, University of Lucerne
  • Centre for Law, Arts and Humanities, The Australian National University
  • Law Department, University of Roma Tre
  • Institute for Art History, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich

Bringing together leading scholars, researchers and postgraduate students, the school will showcase cutting-edge work at the intersections of law and the humanities, and serve as a laboratory for exploring a range of contemporary methods, approaches and issues.


Focus: Law, Art, Politics

The 2020 Summer School will focus on the entanglements of law, art and politics. From statues of the Roman Emperors to Picasso’s Guernica, some of the world’s most celebrated works of art have been explicitly political. But in the twenty-first century everything has been disrupted – including law, including art, including politics. We live in a world obsessed by images and distrustful of politics; a world in which the public sphere is collapsing and private interests seem more powerful than ever. What, then, is the role of art in making and unmaking, representing and challenging the language of law and the power of politics? Can art disrupt the disruptors?

Starting from this contemporary perspective, the school will offer a panorama of the dynamic intercourse between law, art and politics across a variety of sites, contexts and periods. The programme will draw on the expertise of scholars working in different research fields and across multiple critical traditions to address such questions as:

  • How do aesthetics and images shape the character of law?
  • What role does art play in transmitting legal and political ideology, or in fostering critique and social change?
  • How might we understand the relations between modes of artistic cultural expression and legal identities?
  • What are the effects of art’s material manifestations on the law?
  • How does art participate in, activate, or reflect upon the imagining of legal futures?

Programme & Activities

The summer school will explore new developments in law and humanities research via interdisciplinary workshops, critical reading groups, and evening lectures and events. Participants will also be encouraged to present and discuss their own projects at one of a series of colloquia run throughout the week.

In addition to the academic sessions, the programme will also include a number of social and cultural events in and around Lucerne. The school thus provides a unique platform for participants to join a community of curious thinkers from different backgrounds and jurisdictions, and to establish lasting networks and friendships.

Faculty & Speakers

The summer school programme will be delivered by an international cohort of distinguished scholars, emerging academics and cultural practitioners with a diverse range of experience and disciplinary expertise. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Desmond Manderson (Centre for Law, Arts and Humanities, The Australian National University)
  • Carey Young (Artist, Associate Professor in Fine Art, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, and Honorary Research Fellow, School of Law, Birkbeck, University of London)
  • Daniela Carpi (Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, University of Verona)
  • Fiona Macmillan (Law Department, University of Roma Tre & Birkbeck, University of London)
  • Emanuele Conte (Law Department, University of Roma Tre)
  • Stefania Gialdroni (Law Department, University of Roma Tre)
  • Malte-Christian Gruber (Institute for Interdisciplinary Legal Studies, University of Lucerne)
  • Steven Howe (Institute for Interdisciplinary Legal Studies, University of Lucerne)
  • Vagias Karavas (Institute for Interdisciplinary Legal Studies, University of Lucerne)
  • Michele Luminati (Institute for Interdisciplinary Legal Studies, University of Lucerne)
  • Antoinette Maget Dominicé (Institute for Art History, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich)
  • Laura Petersen (Institute for International Law and Humanities, University of Melbourne)


The application phase has now closed. Applications received after the deadline will not be considered. 


Please direct all enquiries to