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Closing Seminar of the International Francqui Professor Chair Thomas Spijkerboer

International human rights law is often analysed as if it located in the global North. The erasure of the global South is problematic for methodological reasons as well as for reasons of global justice. Over the past four months, a group of junior academics working at Belgian universities have delved into Third World Approaches to International law (TWAIL), and into case law from the global South, most notably the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. During this seminar, which is the closing event of the International Francqui Professorship of Thomas Spijkerboer at Ghent University, the participants will share what they see as the relevance of global South perspectives on international human rights law with fellow researchers.

Programme: (in pdf click here)

14.00-14.15: Introduction (Thomas Spijkerboer)

14.15-15.30: The impact of Anthony Anghie’s Imperialism, Sovereignty and the Making of International Law on the study of human rights law. Nina Hetmanska (ULB) and Evelien Wauters (KU Leuven) will discuss their projects, focussing on how they rethink them after having digested Anghie’s book. After their presentation, Nadine El-Enany joins the conversation, and after a brief response by Nina and Evelien, the audience can join.

15.15-15.30: Reflections by George Forji Amin (Faculty of Law, University of Manchester)

– Break –

15.45-16.45: The notion of jurisdiction in human rights law. Kristof Gombeer (VUB/Universiteit Leiden) and Eugénie Delval (ULB) discuss their projects, focussing on the impact of the Inter-American Court’s Advisory Opinions on asylum and the environment and the Human Rights Committee’s views on A.S. and others v Italy. After their presentation,  George Forji Amin joins the conversation, and after a brief response by Kristof and Eugénie, the audience can join.

16.45-17.00: reflections by Nadine El-Enany (Birkbeck School of Law)

17.00-17.15: concluding reflections (Thomas Spijkerboer)

NB: Participants are encouraged to read an introductory article about third World Approaches to International law by Anthony Anghie and B.S. Chimni, ‘Third World Approaches to International Law and Individual Responsibility in Internal Conflicts’, Chinese Journal of International Law (2003), 77-104


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