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CFP: ASLH Pre-Conference Workshop on Law and Empire in Sino-Asian History

The American Society for Legal History (ASLH), the International Society for Chinese Law and History (ISCLH), and the Harvard Law School East Asian Legal Studies Program (EALS) jointly invite submissions for a pre-conference workshop in Cambridge, MA on November 21, 2019, directly preceding ASLH’s 2019 annual meeting in Boston. The theme of the workshop is “Law and Empire in Sino-Asian History”: it aims to explore the legal and institutional dimensions of empire in early modern and modern Asia, insofar as they are substantially related to China. Proposals should therefore seriously engage with some aspect of Chinese history, but need not so do exclusively—comparative or transnational papers are most welcome.

We hope, in particular, to present the work of a number of scholars who are new to the ASLH annual meeting–early career scholars and graduate students are therefore especially encouraged to apply. In this way, we hope to promote scholarship in this area of legal history and to encourage more Asianists and Sinologists to attend the ASLH meeting.

The event will be composed of three panels of three to four papers each. One panel, keeping with the traditions of ASLH pre-conference workshops, will exclusively feature early career scholars and graduate students, and we will match each paper on this panel with its own commentator. The other two panels are open to scholars of all ranks and seniority, and follow the usual ASLH panel format: three to four presenters, followed by one commentator, and then by open discussion with the audience.

Applications to the workshop should include a current curriculum vitae, a title, and a paper abstract of no more than 400 words. Applicants whose proposals are accepted will receive some support towards conference hotel and travel costs. Please note that submission to the workshop does NOT preclude a separate submission to the main ASLH meeting (see

Applications close on April 5, 2019, at 5 pm EST. Please send queries and applications to Michael Ng ( and Shuang Chen (, with the subject line “ASLH 2019 Pre-Conference Workshop.” Decisions will be sent out by mid-June.



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