Rule of Law Discourses

“Rule of law” is a concept and category incessantly invoked in the international public domain. At different times and in different hands, a range of different meanings has attached to rule of law. This project studies the bearing of 9/11 on rule of law. In particular, and of urgent legal, political, and social concern, is the manner in which meanings and values of rule of law are conveyed outside the sphere we traditionally think of as legal. In attending to this development, the project includes both doctrinal and nondoctrinal articulations of meanings, values, and relations of rule of law.

In her new book, Discounting Life: Necropolitical Law, Culture, and the Long War on Terror, Jothie Rajah is driven by a protective and passionate concern for rule of law as a legal, social, and political ideal. Discounting Life examines both standard legal texts, such as legislation, as well as nondoctrinal texts to illuminate legal meanings, relations, and values that are constructed and disseminated in ways that tend to evade critical attention, including television, film, and social media.