Ghassan Hage on racism and the mob. Listen to the full conversation on White Fantasies and Arab Fictions between Ghassan Hage, Michael Mohammed Ahmad and Greg Noble.

Our Next Seminar

Kathleen Birrell on Locating Indigeneity: Juridical Storytelling, Literary Jurisprudences

Friday 13 October
11.00am -12.30pm
Building 3.G.55, Bankstown Campus, Western Sydney University

This seminar will discuss the notion of locating indigeneity – that is, locating indigeneity geographically and discursively, as encapsulated and expressed in law and literature.  I will consider Indigenous peoples as local subjects, with ontological and epistemological connections to ancestral country, yet simultaneously as global subjects, in possession of contemporary political, legal and cultural identities with international valency.  Drawing upon my research to date on juridical and literary renderings of indigeneity, I will extend this analysis to the pressing context of climate change.  Through a reading of Alexis Wright’s novels, Carpentaria and The Swan Book, I will examine the constraints of juridical storytelling, exemplified in the universalising imperatives of global climate change governance, and reveal the literary jurisprudences of local resistance.  Ultimately, I will locate indigeneity not in the habitual subordination of the local to the global, but in the generative resistance of the local, and the constitutive relation between these.

Kathleen Birrell is a McKenzie Postdoctoral Fellow at Melbourne Law School. She completed a PhD (Law) at Birkbeck, University of London, under the supervision of Professor Peter Fitzpatrick, and an LLB (Hons), BA (Hons) and Graduate Diploma in Arts (English Literature) at The University of Melbourne.  She has taught at Birkbeck, University of London and, prior to entering academia, worked in commercial legal practice, specialising in environmental, property and native title law.  She is a member of the Melbourne Law School Centre for Resources, Energy and Environmental Law and Institute for International Law and the Humanities.

Our seminars are free and open to visitors from outside the university. If you want to come along to one of our seminars simply RSVP by sending an email to indicating which seminar you wish to attend.

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