Legal Experts and Legal Expertise in the Ancient World
Coordinators: José Luis Alonso (University of the Basque Country), Jakub Urbanik (University of Warsaw)
Our experience in Oñati
For much of the past century, socio-legal studies and ancient legal history have gone separate ways, the former focusing on the contemporary development of the law, its regulatory function in society and the social aspects of law creation, the latter concentrating on the historical development of legal institutions and, inevitably, on the problems posed by the sources themselves. This increasing isolation would have come as a surprise to been not so easy to foresee in the turn of the century, when figures such as Max Weber or Leon Petrazycki incarnated the, a priori natural, connection between legal history and sociology of law. The twentieth century turn from factography to social and economic history has stimulated also among legal historians a renewed interest in the connections between law and society, and in the law as cultural expression, part of the so-called history of mentality. Our Workshop is conceived as the first of a series aiming at renewing the communication between these not so new currents in legal historiography and the rich tradition of the sociology of law, and at providing, from the inexhaustible realm of the ancient legal experience, new materials for socio-legal study.