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Subversive Legal History shortlisted for socio-legal book prize

23 February 2022

Professor Russell Sandberg’s latest book has been shortlisted for this year’s Socio-Legal Studies Association (SLSA) Socio-Legal Theory and History Book Prize.

Subversive Legal History: A Manifesto for the Future of Legal Education, published by Routledge in 2021, is the only book authored by a UK based academic that has been nominated for this year’s prize. Professor Sandberg’s book is shortlisted alongside Jana Norman’s Posthuman Legal Subjectivity (Routledge) and Amelia Thorpe’s Owning the Street: The Everyday Life of Property (MIT Press)

Sandberg’s book argues that history needs to be at the beating heart of the law curriculum. While history is usually used by lawyers to stabilise the present, Sandberg argues that it should be used to subvert, question and supersede the present by showing that different ways of governance are possible.

Professor Sandberg commented, “I am thrilled, honoured and more than a little surprised to see Subversive Legal History shortlisted for this award alongside two other excellent ground-breaking books. The book's message is that legal history is anarchic rather than archaic - and that it should be part of the toolkit of all law students and researchers as a necessary way to critique the law”.

The winner of the prize will be announced in April at the SLSA's annual conference.

Instead of the usual book launch, Professor Sandberg has posted a number of videos on his YouTube channel in which he holds a 'Subversive Symposium' where he is joined by a guest expert to discuss the themes of the book and their own research.

The book is the first in a new book series, Transforming Legal Histories, which is edited by Professor Sandberg alongside Dr Sharon Thompson (Reader in Law at Cardiff University), Professor Lydia Hayes (Head of Kent Law School) and Dr Katie Richards (Lecturer in Law at University of Bristol).

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