Here are some of my articles and other shorter writings you might enjoy. Please note that some articles appear on gated sites, generally available through university libraries and other subscribing institutions. I have flagged these publications with an asterisk (*). For a complete list of my writing, see my resume.
For a story about law and colonial-era Christianity from African-American legal history: “‘This Miserable African’: Race, Crime, and Disease in Colonial Boston,” Common-Place (on-line journal of colonial history, sponsored by the American Antiquarian Society) (April 2004).
For some reflections on the rule of law: Faculty Commencement Address, Rutgers-Newark School of Law, May 2010.
For a discussion of the rule of the clan in foreign affairs, “The Call of the Clan: Why ancient kinship and tribal affiliation still matter in a world of global geopolitics,” Foreign Policy (15 May 2013).
For an editorial about current affairs in the Middle East and North Africa: “Rule of the clan a challenge to progress in Middle East, North Africa,” New Jersey Star Ledger (17 July 2011), with John Farmer, Jr.
On the transformation of legal memory in Iceland: “Public Memory and the Rule of Law in an Age of Globalization and the Internet: Lessons from Iceland,” Lögfræðingur (2010) (law journal of the University of Akureyri, Iceland). Originally given as a talk to students at the University of Akureyri and the University of Würzburg.
Readers seeking historiographic reflections about my book The Rule of the Clan can find them in “Imagining the Rule of Law in Nineteenth-Century Britain: Liberal Society and the Dialectic of the Clan,” published in the Erasmus Law Review (2013) in the Netherlands.
Discussions about individualism based on The Rule of the Clan include (*) “The Paradox of Individualism,” Chronicle of Higher Education (1 April 2013) (on a gated site) and “The Legal Foundations of Individualism,” TelosSCOPE (10 April 2014).
On the need for constitutional amendments to solve problems in American politics through democratic means: “Constitutional amendments needed to solve today’s political problems,” New Jersey Star Ledger (5 August 2011).
For high school social studies teachers: “Teachable Trials in the Social Studies Classroom,” Social Education (May/June 2010).
By the way, I don’t think mandatory voting is constitutional (as I explain in this New York Times letter to the editor), and a colleague and I think that regulating the safety of the seas was a great achievement unobtainable through markets (as we note in this Wall Street Journal letter to the editor).
For a short little essay about English legal history and the history of legal publishing, describing a visit of my students to a rare book room: “Reporting English Law in English,” Bits & Bytes (October 2007).
On the Argentine intellectual and statesmen Domingo Sarmiento (and some reflections on the cultural foundations of the liberal rule of law): “Domingo Sarmiento and the Cultural History of Law in the Americas,” Rutgers Law Review (2011) (memoriam volume for Prof. John Payne). Originally given as a talk to graduate students in law and society at New York University.
For a talk given to the Princeton Historical Society on the suspension of habeas corpus during the American civil war, click here.
In 2005, I spoke at Syracuse University about my book Black Trials, explaining how I view its interpretive frame and narrative approach.
On historical method (*): “Liberal History and Historical Style After Virtue,” invited response in “Questioning the Assumptions of Academic History: A Forum,” in Historically Speaking: Bulletin of the Historical Society (January 2011). Other forum participants: Christopher Shannon (“From Histories to Traditions: A New Paradigm for the Study of the Past,” featured essay), Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn, Daniel Wickberg. On a gated site.
On religious freedom in Muslim societies (*): “Religious Freedom and the Rule of the Clan in Muslim Societies,” The Review of Faith and International Affairs (Summer 2011). On a gated site.
Something different: six poems about legal history (*): “A History of the Common Law” (six poems from an experimental work in progress, with an introduction), in Rethinking History: The Journal of Theory and Practice (2012) (Special Issue: History as Creative Writing). On a gated site. For a somewhat different version of one of the poems, here is “A Teacher in Baghdad.”
On liberal identity in Europe, here’s a translation of some thoughts from an essay originally in German.
In addition to writing about law, I also have an interest in the history of food and the presentation of the past in museums. Here are two articles about those subjects—and about the relation between consumer society and democratic society:
On historical museums about consumer food products (*): “We Are What We Eat; or, Democracy, Community and the Politics of Corporate Food Displays,” American Quarterly (June 1994). On a gated site.
On the history of Coca-Cola (*): “Consumer Culture and Participatory Democracy: The Story of Coca-Cola During World War II,” Food & Foodways (1996). On a gated site. Reprinted in Carole Counihan, ed., Food in the USA: A Reader.
On a contemporary study of political theology drawing on the work of Carl Schmitt, (*) “Love’s Empire,” Telos (Fall 2014). On a gated site.
Finally, German readers might be interested in some reflections on law, consumer culture, and civic belonging in Europe given in Berlin, or a discussion of the relation between racial and psychological integration in the American civil rights movement presented as a lecture in Erfurt. And here are some thoughts about liberal identity in Europe (an English translation is also available).