Cultural Expertise, Law, and Rights: Theory, Debates, and Cases

Home Education Online Courses other courses Cultural Expertise, Law, and Rights: Theory, Debates, and Cases

Key words: Cultural expertise, theory and practice of cultural expertise, Indigenous expertise.

This course offers an overview of the advanced tools of cultural expertise. It will familiarise the participants with the interdisciplinary approaches that develop connections for problem-solving among the various disciplines of the social sciences. It will address the theoretical and applied components of the major debates and controversies related with the engagement of social scientists with law. It will equip participants with a basic set of principles and ethics to identify the appropriate use of cultural expertise for assisting decision-making authorities in the assessment of evidence, the claim of rights, and the resolution of conflicts. Each class, a mix of theory and case study, will include a theory session and exercises in small groups.

Taught by:  Prof Dr Livia Holden Prof Dr Emma Varley

Length: 8 x 1 hour classes

Start date: TBC (beginning of 2024)

Certification: Certificates of participation to be given upon completion of the course.

Price: £245

Materials: All core readings are available online either through publically accessible websites or the RAI Anthropology Library, which students will be given access to once they are enrolled.

Email courses@therai.org.uk with any questions.

If you are already an enrolled student, you can access our Moodle platform here:

Tutor biography

Livia Holden is Director of Research at Paris 1 Sorbonne. She currently leads K-Peritia (COST Action 2023 – 2027) for the support of the Cultural Expertise Junior Network. She is regularly appointed as an expert for matters pertaining to South Asian laws and cultures.

Find out more information about Livia here: https://www.therai.org.uk/about-the-rai/staff/livia-holden

Emma Varley is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Brandon University and Outgoing President of CASCA (Canadian Anthropology Society). She is a medical anthropologist with long term experience of field research in Pakistan and India.

Find out more information about Emma here: https://people.brandonu.ca/varleye/

This course is licensed by CULTEXP the trademark for the development and dissemination of cultural expertise.

Syllabus

 

Session 1 Cultural expertise: New Legal Pluralism, Interculturalism, and Decolonisation.

This session will retrace the genesis of cultural expertise as an umbrella concept to be positioned vis-à-vis current trends from across the social sciences.


Session 2 Cultural Expertise, Ethics and Deontology.

This session will explore the ethical principles of cultural expertise to stress the strengthened ethics that cultural experts should adopt to secure a position of professional authority in the legal setting.


Session 3 Race, gender & sexuality.

This session identifies how cultural expertise can assist in navigating the complex definitions and debates surrounding socially, medically, and politically constructed ideas of race, gender, and sexuality. It also explores how cultural expertise can assist when the law requires the ascertainment of belonging in connection with rights.


Session 4 Cultural expertise, asylum, refugees, and migration.

This session will introduce participants to the diverse ways cultural expertise can assist courts in matters of refugee law, asylum law and migration. This section will also touch at the various styles and potential challenges of providing cultural expertise in asylum and migration.


Session 5 Cultural expertise and political violence.

This session will offer select case-studies about the ways cultural expertise has been used to counter and prosecute extremist speech and terrorism, and corroborate the cultural dynamics and social risks inherent to violence and warfare. This session will also introduce participants to the ethics of engaging with the investigation teams and highly politicised trials.


Session 6 Cultural expertise at international jurisdictions.

This session provides an overview on the use of cultural expertise in international courts and tribunals, to understand how cultural expertise is presented in various regional human rights courts, and what has been the role of cultural experts in human rights litigation in selected case studies.


Session 7 Cultural expertise, Indigenous peoples, and Indigenous rights.

This session provides an overview of the ways cultural expertise has assisted courts and policy makers for matters concerning Indigenous peoples. This session will include case-studies that demonstrate the need for the ethical engagement of experts in ways that revolve around the primacy of the voices and the rights of Indigenous people.


Session 8 Cultural expertise in procedural justice, commercial arbitration, and conflict resolution.

This session will offer an overview of how cultural expertise has assisted legal proceedings in various specialized fields of law including land rights, climate change, health and medicine, procedural justice, commercial arbitration, and conflict resolution.

 

Learning Outcomes

  • Understanding the historical development and current trends in cultural expertise as an umbrella concept within the social sciences.
  • Exploring the ethical principles and deontology specific to cultural expertise in diverse legal contexts.
  • Gaining insights into the application of cultural expertise in navigating complex issues related to race, gender, sexuality, and the ascertainment of belonging in relation to rights.
  • Acquiring knowledge of the role of cultural expertise in matters of refugee law, asylum law, migration, and the challenges involved in providing cultural expertise in these areas.
  • Examining the use of cultural expertise in countering extremist speech, prosecuting terrorism, and engaging with highly politicized trials.
  • Understanding the use of cultural expertise in international courts and tribunals, including regional human rights courts, through selected case studies.
  • Recognizing and fostering the role of Indigenous expertise in assisting courts and policymakers in matters concerning Indigenous peoples and Indigenous rights.
  • Gaining an overview of the application of cultural expertise in procedural justice, commercial arbitration, and conflict resolution, particularly in specialized fields such as land rights, climate change, and health and medicine.