Mirror of Justice

A blog dedicated to the development of Catholic legal theory.
Affiliated with the Program on Church, State & Society at Notre Dame Law School.

Monday, March 14, 2022

Announcing the Sixth Biennial Colloquium in Law & Religion at St. John's Law School

The Center for Law and Religion, which Mark Movsesian and I co-direct, is delighted to announce the lineup for the sixth biennial Colloquium in Law and Religion, scheduled for Fall 2022. The Colloquium brings outside scholars and jurists to St. John’s to teach a seminar for selected students. 

This year’s Colloquium speakers are Judge Richard J. Sullivan of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and Professors J. Joel Alicea (Catholic University School of Law), Nathan Chapman (University of Georgia School of Law), Nicole Stelle Garnett & Fr. Pat Reidy (Notre Dame Law School and Yale Law School student), Anna Su (University of Toronto Faculty of Law), and Nelson Tebbe (Cornell Law School).

For more information about the Colloquium, please contact Center Co-Directors Mark Movsesian and Marc DeGirolami.

March 14, 2022 in DeGirolami, Marc | Permalink

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Mirror of Justice's 18th (!) anniversary . . . and the Velveteen Rabbit

Our first post here at Mirror of Justice went live just over 18 years ago.  ("Wait, grandpa . . . they had the Internet 18 years ago?"  "Yes, m'boy, and there was content besides homemade dance videos, too!")  Here's the opening graf:

Welcome to Mirror of Justice, a group blog created by a group of Catholic law professors interested in discovering how our Catholic perspective can inform our understanding of the law. Indeed, we ask whether the great wealth of the Catholic intellectual and moral tradition offers a basis for creating a distinctive Catholic legal theory- one distinct from both secular and other religious legal theories. Can Catholic moral theology, Catholic Social Thought and the Catholic natural law tradition offer insights that are both critical and constructive, and which can contribute to the dialogue within both the legal academy and the broader polity? In particular, we ask whether the profoundly counter-cultural elements in Catholicism offer a basis for rethinking the nature of law in our society. The phrase "Mirror of Justice" is one of the traditional appellations of Our Lady, and thus a fitting inspiration for this effort.

It is not clear, of course, what the future is for blogs and mid-2000's-style, blog-based conversations.  There's no denying that other platforms and media (especially Twitter) have distracted some of us (me!) and made for a more crowded field of things-to-read.  And yet:  Nearly two decades later, we are a group of friends and colleagues who continue to be interested in "discovering how our Catholic perspective can inform our understanding of the law", and in sharing this path of discovery with our students, our fellow lawyers, and, well, anyone who is interested!

One of my first sort-of-substantive posts was about the importance and relevance of "moral anthropology" to the legal enterprise.  I continue to think this is a linch-pin issue.  That is, it matters -- a lot -- for law what human persons are and what they are for.  Are we (in C.S. Lewis's words) "everlasting splendours" or . . . meat puppets?  If we have "dignity", what makes it so that we do?

March 13, 2022 in Garnett, Rick | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Conference: "Beyond 'Defensive Crouch' Religious Freedom"

I'm happy to be participating in this conference hosted by the Liberty & Law Center at George Mason Law School. I'll present a paper called "Traditionalist Disestablishments," a first step in combining my research interests in traditionalist constitutional interpretation with some of the developments occurring in law and religion at the moment. More soon on that. Here is the conference description:

In the United States today, religious individuals and institutions increasingly find themselves seeking exemptions from a wide array of laws and regulations burdening their free exercise. In this environment, it is important to ask about religion’s positive contributions to individuals and to society.
The Liberty & Law Center is therefore hosting a two-day conference on March 24 & 25, 2022 at the Antonin Scalia Law School in order to explore several urgent questions: what goods and values does religious exercise further, including institutional exercise; how religious exercise can not only serve but sometimes better promote the values of equality, dignity, and freedom valorized by the state; and how religious institutions might better understand and communicate the social worth of religion and religious freedom.
Findings will be presented in four panels over the course of two days. To view the agenda and detailed list of speakers, click here. For questions about the event, please email [email protected]. We hope you'll join us!

March 2, 2022 in DeGirolami, Marc | Permalink