Professor Julia J.A. Shaw

Job: Professor of Law and Social Justice

Faculty: Business and Law

School/department: Leicester De Montfort Law School

Address: The Gateway, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK, LE1 9BH

T: +44 (0)116 257 7826

E: jshaw@dmu.ac.uk

W: http://www.dmu.ac.uk/bal

 

Personal profile

Julia J.A. Shaw is Professor of Law and Social Justice and a core member of the Centre for Urban Research on Austerity (CURA).  After being awarded an Iredell Trust Scholarship, she completed her PhD in law and applied moral philosophy at Lancaster University, where she held her first academic post.  Before joining DMU, she was a Visiting Professor at Audencia, France and Director of Legal Studies at Aston University.  Her interdisciplinary research spans law and the humanities, legal theory, critical and cultural legal studies, food justice, social justice, human rights, law and public policy, CSR and sustainability.  Along with acting as guest editor, Julia is a founder member of the Social Responsibility Journal, Book Editor for a new Springer series on 'Law and Visual Aesthetics' and Associate Editor of the International Journal for the Semiotics of Law.  She publishes in a wide range of leading journals, contributes to edited collections, and is the author of Jurisprudence published by Pearson; now in its 3rd edition.  She has recently published two research monographs, 'Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Justice and the Global Food Supply Chain’ (with H.J. Shaw) on food poverty, law and public policy (Routledge 2019) and 'Law and the Passions: Why Emotion Matters for Justice' (Routledge 2019), which has been nominated for the annual HLA Hart-SLSA Legal Theory book prize.

Research group affiliations

Centre for Urban Research on Austerity

Law and Social Justice

Law, Culture and the Humanities

Publications and outputs 

  • Lefebvre and Law: social justice, new technologies and the spatial imaginary
    Lefebvre and Law: social justice, new technologies and the spatial imaginary Shaw, Julia J. A. As the fluidity of contemporary social life has accelerated due to an ongoing process of social and technological transformation, there has been increasing interest in the work of Henri Lefebvre on the production of space and how different types of space impact on each other. His work amalgamates perception, symbolism and the social imaginary by addressing the ways in which their contradictory relations can be fashioned into new codes in a constantly-evolving process of producing space. The interaction between Lefebvre’s articulation of the spatial imaginary and law is an emerging area of importance which has, until recently, been neglected. This chapter addresses the implications for law as spatial justice, in a world of algorithms, web maps, hyperlinked spaces and teched-out cyber-communities. The technological revolution has necessitated a metaphoric shift in how we understand the production of space and social relations; particularly in the shadow of new technologies of access and exclusion which raise concerns over freedom of expression, privacy, mass surveillance and monitoring. As technological and media innovations transform who and what we are, and how we live, the question becomes, in the words of the late David Bowie (and paraphrasing Lefebvre) ‘where are we now’ (2013)?
  • Of Comics and Legal Aesthetics: Multimodality and the Haunted Mask of Knowing
    Of Comics and Legal Aesthetics: Multimodality and the Haunted Mask of Knowing Shaw, Julia J. A. Like law, comics use a hierarchical vocabulary of signs, symbols and icons which is synonymous with the symbolic order of intersubjective relations, and ‘produced in the dialogue and discourse all about us: in the things that we read and say, in the music we listen to, and in the art we grow up with’ (Manderson 2003: 93). Such visual aesthetic forms increase awareness of ‘a multiplicity of dissident perspectives which stimulate ‘free play of the imagination and assist in our understanding of the world through our senses’; with the corollary that ‘the communicative power of this sensory information allows for richer intellectual and emotional engagement with objects and concepts as they really are’ (Shaw 2019: 28). Comic books and the increasingly popular graphic novel format routinely engage with topical issues relating to legality, order, morality and justice, yet have been largely neglected within legal scholarship. Accordingly, it is proposed that many of the constraints and limitations which are imposed on legal discourse can be overcome by embracing an alternative way of conceiving legal categories and constructs.
  • Law and the Passions: Why Emotion Matters for Justice
    Law and the Passions: Why Emotion Matters for Justice Shaw, Julia J. A. Engaging with the underlying social context in which emotions are a motivational force, Law and the Passions provides a uniquely inclusive commentary on the significance and influence of emotions in the history and continuing development of legal judgment, policy formation, legal practice and legal dogma. Although the emotionality of the law and the use of emotional tropes in legal discourse has become an established focus in recent scholarship, the extent to which emotion and the passions have informed decision-making, decision-avoidance and legal reasoning – rather than as simply an adjunct – is still a matter for critical analysis. As evidenced in a range of illustrative legal cases, emotions have been instrumental in the evolution of key legal principles and have produced many controversial judgments. Addressing the latent influence of fear, hate, love and compassion, the book explores the mutability of law and its transformative power, especially when faced with fluctuating social mores. The textual nature of law and the impact of literary forms on legal actors are also critically examined to further elucidate the idea of law-making as both rational and emotional, and significantly as an essential activity of the empathic imagination. To this end, it is suggested that critical scholarship on law, the passions and emotions not only advances our understanding of the inner workings of law, it constitutes a fundamental part of our moral reasoning, and has the capacity to articulate the conditions for a more dynamic, adaptable, ethical and effective legal institution.
  • Worth a Thousand Words: The Unwritten History of Law as a Jurisprudence of Text and Pictures
    Worth a Thousand Words: The Unwritten History of Law as a Jurisprudence of Text and Pictures Shaw, Julia J. A. Founded on the tripartite emblematic tradition of 'inscriptio' (word as title or motto), 'pictura' (image) and 'subscriptio' (explanatory text or epigram), the image above all else is shown to be the archetype of governance. It is alleged to comprise the ‘anima legis, the living, breathing spirit of law’ and is always encountered first; and it is this ‘depiction of legitimacy’, the ‘figure of justice being done’, that provides the very ‘condition of the possibility of law’ (p. 25). Interestingly, although some of the foremost authors were lawyers, including Andrea Alciato, Barthélemy Aneau and George Wither, their emblem books covered an eclectic range of popular topics rather than focus on law and governance. Until recently this short-lived but much loved medium was treated as mere decoration, a curiosity or a means of amusement and has mostly passed unrecognised by the modern juristic tradition. As a corrective, this distinctive genre with its representational and conceptual pictorial images which aim to go beyond, to express the inexpressible and, most significantly, to convey the idea of the abstract rule and the signs and symbols that capture the heart and soul of law, is explored for the very first time in 'Legal Emblems and the Art of Law'. Goodrich has selected an appealing set of examples from around 1531 to 1700 to trace the trajectory of the normative function of the image, which aptly illustrate how the book of emblems ‘brought images to law’ and in turn ‘brought law to images, that is to say to life’.
  • Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Justice and the Global Food Supply Chain
    Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Justice and the Global Food Supply Chain Shaw, Julia J. A.; Shaw, Hillary J. Food is a source of nourishment, a cause for celebration, an inducement to temptation, a means of influence, and signifies good health and well-being. Together with other life enhancing goods such as clean water, unpolluted air, adequate shelter and suitable clothing, food is a basic good which is necessary for human flourishing. In recent times, however, various environmental and social challenges have emerged, which are having a profound effect on both the natural world and built environment – such as climate change, feeding a growing world population, nutritional poverty and obesity. Consequently, whilst the relationships between producers, supermarkets, regulators and the individual have never been more important, they are becoming increasingly complicated. In the context of a variety of hard and soft law solutions, with a particular focus on corporate social responsibility (CSR), the authors explore the current relationship between all actors in the global food supply chain. Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Justice and the Global Food Supply Chain also provides a comprehensive and interdisciplinary response to current calls for reform in relation to social and environmental justice, and proposes an alternative approach to current CSR initiatives. This comprises an innovative multi-agency proposal, with the aim of achieving a truly responsible and sustainable food retail system. Because only by engaging in the widest possible participatory exercise and reflecting on the urban locale in novel, material and cultural ways, is it possible to uncover new directions in understanding, framing and tackling the modern phenomena of, for instance, food deserts, obesity, nutritional poverty and social injustice.
  • Law and the Literary Imagination: The Continuing Relevance of Literature to Modern Legal Scholarship
    Law and the Literary Imagination: The Continuing Relevance of Literature to Modern Legal Scholarship Shaw, Julia J. A. Although the sheer technicality of the law’s concepts and categories often inhibits any discussion of their own premises, literature is able to illuminate the world by means of imagistic language, elucidating important moral values and social ideas. Therefore, historically, philosophical writings, literary texts and tropes have been important sources of reference and inspiration in the formation of key legal concepts such as justice, rights, authority, freedom and equality. The relationship between law and literature is nothing new as both are cultural practices and share a mutual interest in meaning-making. Just as art is said to imitate life, law emulates life through invention and fiction. This chapter explores the significance of a literary imagination to lawmakers and legal scholars alike, particularly in response to the modern moral and legal dilemmas posed by our increasingly complex society.
  • Jurisprudence, 3rd edition
    Jurisprudence, 3rd edition Shaw, Julia J. A. Jurisprudence is founded on the assumption that the foundations of legal knowledge are not fixed; rather, laws are contingent and so constitute the proper object of inquiry as to their underlying motivations and justifications. Therefore, by studying jurisprudence it is possible to acquire a generic and profound critical understanding of the law; which is facilitated by the adoption of an interdisciplinary approach to fundamental questions about the origin and purpose of legal doctrine, and the function of (real or ideal) legal systems. Scrutiny of primary sources within jurisprudence will encourage further development of the legal vocabulary, demystify theoretical legal language and enhance the critical faculties, by demonstrating how to approach and critically reflect on primary texts in legal philosophy. Finally, having become accustomed to applying a critical mindset, the jurisprudence scholar will develop the ability to make important connections between different theorists and theories, to articulate new insights and evaluate their wider societal implications, particularly in meeting the requirements of human flourishing and social justice.
  • A phenomenological study of moral discourse, social justice and CSR
    A phenomenological study of moral discourse, social justice and CSR Shaw, Julia J. A. Although many stakeholder perspectives are concerned with the moral responsibility of business in relation to creating social benefits, evidence suggests that there is a lack of consensus on the nature of those responsibilities that ought to be assumed by companies in a given society. In the context of almost daily reports of unfair or discriminatory business practices and a growing number of social and environmental scandals, particularly those relating to the financial sector, corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives are too often arbitrary and only serve to justify the deeper extension of market forces into an already imploding social body. This chapter uses a phenomenological methodology to investigate what is necessary to achieve a consensus on identifying fair, right and just actions in a modern globalized corporate environment, by exploring the procedural ethical approaches of neo-Kantians, John Rawls and Jürgen Habermas. Their articulation of a moral framework of intersubjective principles of right and fairness is used to explore the possibility of establishing a minimum standard of fair and just practice, which is capable of extending to all stakeholders as a benchmark or even prerequisite for best CSR practice.
  • From Beethoven to Bowie: Identity Framing, Social Justice and the Sound of Law
    From Beethoven to Bowie: Identity Framing, Social Justice and the Sound of Law Shaw, Julia J. A. Music is an inescapable part of social, cultural and political life, and has played a powerful role in mobilising support for popular movements demanding social justice. The impact of David Bowie, Prince and Bob Dylan, for example, on diversity awareness and legislative reform relating to sexuality, gender and racial equality respectively is still felt; with the latter receiving a Nobel Prize in 2016 for ‘having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition’. The influence of these composers and performers reached far beyond the concert hall. Conversely, musical propaganda has been a common feature of many dictatorships, most notably Nazism’s Adolf Hitler and Communism’s Joseph Stalin, and is still instrumental in the election campaigns of political parties. US President Donald Trump’s winning retro classic rock campaign playlist conveyed an idealised version of the past which aligned with the tastes and interests of his core constituency, and evoked feelings of nationalistic pride and patriotism. The eclectic selection of upbeat music effectively masked the underlying capitalist initiatives, corporate greed and allegations of financial impropriety that characterised both the Democrat and Republican campaigns. Although unable to impart meaning with the same level of precision as language, music has a potentially broader semantic capacity due to its greater elasticity. It constitutes a common language which has the ability to create a community of people that sings, speaks, reasons, votes and even feels the same way. Accordingly, this article explores the symbiotic relationship between music and law, identity politics and social justice, via the lens of musical semiosis. The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.
  • Reimagining Justice: Aesthetics and Law
    Reimagining Justice: Aesthetics and Law Shaw, Julia J. A. The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.

Click here to see a full listing of Julia Shaw's publications and outputs.

Key research outputs

  • Law and the Passions: Why Emotion Matters for Justice, Routledge (2019) 208pp.
  • ‘Lefebvre and law: social justice, new technologies and the spatial imaginary’, in The Routledge Handbook of Henri Lefebvre, the City and Urban Society, M. E Leary-Owhin & J.P. McCarthy (eds), Routledge (2019) 187-206
  • Corporate Social Respnsibility, Social Justice and the Global Food Supply Chain, Routledge (2019) 208pp.
  • Jurisprudence (3rd edition) Pearson, Harlow (2018) 200pp.
  • Law and the Literary Imagination: the contribution of literature to modern legal scholarship, in The Palgrave Handbook of Philosophy and Literature, M. Mack & B. Stocker (eds), Palgrave Macmillan (2018) 451-559
  • ‘From Beethoven to Bowie: identity framing, social justice and the sound of law’, 31(2) International Journal for the Semiotics of Law in special issue: ‘Music, Cultural Heritage and Law’ (2018) 301-324
  • ‘A phenomenological study of moral discourse, social justice and CSR’, in Handbook of Research methods in Corporate Social Responsibility, D. Crowther & L. Lauesen (eds), Edward Elgar Publishing (2017) 377-390
  • ‘Aesthetics of Law and Literary License: an anatomy of the legal imagination’, 38(1) Liverpool Law review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues (2017) 83-105
  • ‘Reimagining Justice: Aesthetics and Law’, 38(1) Liverpool Law Review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues (2017) 1-10
  • ‘Mapping the technologies of spatial (in)justice in the Anthropocene’, (with H.J. Shaw) Vol. 25(1) Information and Communications Technology Law (2016) 32-49
  • Jurisprudence (2nd edition) Pearson, Harlow (2016) 200pp.
  • ‘From homo economicus to homo roboticus: an exploration of the transformative impact of the technological imaginary’, Vol. 11(3) International Journal of Law in Context (2015) 245-264
  • ‘The politics and poetics of spaces and places: mapping the multiple geographies of identity in a cultural posthuman era’, Vol. 12(3) Journal of Organisational Transformation & Social Change (2015), 234-256
  • ‘Compassion and the criminal justice system: stumbling along towards a jurisprudence of love and forgiveness’, Vol. 11(1) International Journal of Law in Context (2015) 92-107
  • ‘From fact to feeling: an explication of the mimetic relation between law, language and emotion’ (with H.J. Shaw) Vol. 35(1) Liverpool Law Review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues (2014) 42-64
  • Jurisprudence 1st edition, Pearson, Harlow (2014) 180pp.
  • ‘Reimagining Humanities: Socio-Legal Studies in an Age of Disenchantment’ in Exploring the Socio of Socio-Legal Studies, D. Feenan (ed.), Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke Socio-Legal Studies Series (2013) 111-133
  • ‘A Study of the Semiotic and Narrative Forms of Divine Influence in Secular Legal Systems’ in monographic issue Vol. 26(1) International Journal for the Semiotics of Law / Revue Internationale de Sémiotique Juridique (2013) 95-113
  • ‘The Continuing Relevance of Ars Poetica to Legal Scholarship and the Modern Lawyer’ Vol. 25(1) International Journal for the Semiotics of Law / Revue Internationale de Sémiotique Juridique (2012) 71-93

Research interests/expertise

My research is interdisplinary and includes: legal theory, law, culture and the humanities, CSR, applied philosophy, literary Jurisprudence, law and emotion, global justice, political theory and public policy, critical and cultural legal studies, spatial justice and food justice.

I am interested in supervising postgraduate students in any of the above areas.

Areas of teaching

Jurisprudence; Public Law; Law, Culture and the Humanities

Qualifications

 PhD (Lancaster); LLM (Lancaster); LLB Hons (Lancaster)

Membership of professional associations and societies

Socio-Legal Studies Association

Academici Knowledge Network

Royal Society of Arts

Critical Legal Network

Centre for Urban Research on Austerity

Social Responsibility Research Network

SCOS Network on Organizational Symbolism

Conference attendance

Invited Keynote and Plenary Presentations

  • The post-Brexit challenge to the food industry, and the role of state and non-state actors in addressing food insecurity at the UK-Norwegian Food Summit, London, 2019
  • Music and image in legal and political discourse, 18th International Conference of Association Répertoire International d’Iconographie Musicale (RIdIM), University of Kent, 2018
  • The transformative power of culture and the limits of law at one-day conference, ‘Island and Mainland: perspectives on law and humanities’ hosted by Queen Mary University, 2018
  • Food poverty and social justice in the Welsh Valleys, National Food Policy Conference hosted by the Wales Food Poverty Alliance, Builth Wells, Powys, 2017
  • Lex enim sensibile and the wisdom of kisses, Law and the Senses II: Human, Posthuman, Inhuman Sensings Colloquium. Westminster Law School, University of Westminster, London, 2017
  • The new human condition: Reimagining the technologies of control in the Anthropocene, 10th European Society for Literature, Science and the Arts (SLSAeu) Conference, Stockholm University, Sweden, 2016
  • 'Law, metaphor and literary license: an anatomy of the legal imagination’, sponsored by the Socio-Legal Studies Association (SLSA) and Journal of Law and Society, hosted by the University of Southampton, 25 September 2015
  • ‘The significance of the passions in mapping the legal landscape’, Centre of Legal Philosophy, Ethics and Culture, in the Public Lecture Series, hosted by Queen Mary University, London, 4 December 2014
  • ‘Law, Narrative and Literary License: An Anatomy of the Judicial Imagination’, International Law, Language and LiteratureColloquium, hosted by University Paris Ouest-Nanterre, France, June 2011
  • ‘Reimagining the Humanities within Socio-Legal Studies in an Age of Disenchantment’, one-day conference ‘Exploring the socio of socio-legal studies’ hosted by the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London, November 2010
  • ‘Compulsion v Conscience: modified rule of law as realisation of the democratic ideal’, University of Birmingham Centre for the Study of Global Ethics, December 2004
  • ‘An explication of the EU constitution: human rights, honour and humiliation’ at a conference ‘Europe’s torn identity’, funded by the European Commission and hosted by the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, October 2003

Refereed Conference Papers

  • Regeneration: law and the posthuman, Critical Legal Conference, Open University, 2018
  • Law and the Passions: A discrete history’, Socio-legal Studies Conference, University of Bristol, 2018
  • Après la catastrophe, le déluge: Reframing justice via a new aesthetics of resistance and resilience’, Critical Legal Conference, University of Warwick, 2017
  • ‘From Crisis to Resilience: Spatial Justice in an Age of Austerity’, Critical Legal Conference, University of Kent, 2016
  • ‘Sensational Jurisprudence: Exploring a hierarchy of the senses in legal culture, Socio-legal Studies Association Conference, Lancaster University, 2016
  • ‘From homo economicus to homo roboticus: law and the posthuman, Socio-legal Studies Annual  Conference, University of Warwick, April 2015
  • ‘The politics and poetics of spaces and places: mapping the multiple geographies of social and legal identity in a cultural posthuman era’, Socio-legal Studies Annual  Conference, University of Aberdeen, April 2014
  • ‘Let’s fight: understanding law as an entropic phenomenon’, Critical Legal Conference, Queen’s University Belfast, September 2013
  • ‘A diasporic reading of the multiple geographies of social and legal identity in a cultural posthuman era’, Socio-legal Studies Annual Conference, University of York, April 2013
  • ‘On Empathy as a Necessary Foundation for Justice’, Critical Legal Conference, Stockholm, September 2012
  • The Epistemological Significance of Emotional Judgment: Beyond Purely Rational Discourse’, Socio-legal Studies Annual Conference, De Montfort University, April 2012
  • ‘Deconstructing Identity and Difference in a Post-human Era’, Monstrosity and Humanity: Monster Conference, De Montfort University, November 2011
  • ‘A view from the rabbit hole: monsters, myths and the possibility of justice’, Critical Legal Conference, Aberystwyth University, September 2011
  • ‘The Gulf War might never have happened but hacking certainly did: Baudrillard, Nihilism and News International’ (with David Crowther), International Conference on Organisational Governance, De Montfort University, September 2011
  • ‘Engaging with the multiple languages of law in an age of disenchantment’, Socio-legal Studies Annual Conference, University of Sussex, April 2011
  • ‘The Transformative Power of Literature: Rebuilding the necessary connection between law and emotion’, Critical Legal Conference, Utrecht, September 2010
  • ‘Beyond Regulation: Fact, Fiction and the Eccentric World of Finance’, 9th International Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility, University of Zagreb, Croatia, June 2010
  • ‘Law and story-telling: connecting facts and fiction’, and Law & Literature stream Chair, Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference, University of West England, Bristol, April 2010
  • ‘Constructing a bridge between legal education and literature’ and stream Chair, 27th Standing Conference on Organisational Symbolism, Copenhagen Business School, July 2009
  • ‘Legitimating the Disorderly Woman’ and Law & Literature stream Chair, Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference, Leicester De Montfort University, April 2009
  • ‘Nomos, Narrative and Broken Promises’ and ‘The Empowerment of Women in the Workplace’, 7th International Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility, Durham University, September 2008
  • ‘Sisyphus, Seneca and the Last Taboo’ and ‘Fags and Fiction: Regulation and the Tobacco Industry’, and Law & Literature stream Chair, Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference, Manchester, March 2008  

Current research students

Helen Franklin (October 2018-) Full Bursary Scholarship Holder

Gerald Opiah (April 2019-)

Sharon Ball (2019-) Full Bursary Scholarship Holder

Martina Locorotondo (2019-) Full Bursary Scholarship Holder

Externally funded research grants information

Awarded an EU mobility programme research grant, to support a two-month Visiting Fellowship to Åbo Akademi University, Finland, to work with the AAU’s Institute for Human Rights. The project relates to social justice and minority rights, with specific focus on Finland’s Sámi community, 2019

Internally funded research project information

Awarded a research grant by the Centre for Urban Research on Austerity (CURA) in 2016, to investigate urban food poverty within the context of social justice and recent calls for a ‘human right to healthy food’; using Cardiff and the Valleys as a case study.

Professional esteem indicators

Editorial Appointnments

  • Associate Editor of International Journal for the Semiotics of Law, Springer, ISSN 0952-8059
  • Book Series Editor for Springer 'Law and Visual Aesthetics'
  • Associate Editor and founder member of Social Responsibility Journal, Emerald, ISSN 1747-117
  • Editorial Board Member of Journal of Responsible Technology

Guest Editorial Roles

  • Guest Editor of Liverpool Law Review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues 38(1) on aesthetics and law, 2017
  • Guest Editor, Liverpool Law Review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues Vol. 35(1) on law and literature, 2014
  • Guest Editor, Contemporary Issues in Law Vol. 10(4) on law and literature (vol.II) 2010
  • Guest Editor, Contemporary Issues in Law Vol. 9(4) on law and literature (vol.I) 2009

 Journal Refereeing information

  • Journal of Law and Society
  • Journal of Business Ethics
  • International Journal for the Semiotics of Law
  • International Journal of Law and Management
  • International Journal of Law in Context
  • Law and the Humanities
  • Liverpool Law Review: a journal of contemporary legal and social policy issues
  • Law and Literature
  • Law and Critique
  • Law and Society Review

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