Chair: Jed Odermatt, City Law School
Speaker: Rohini Sen, Jindal Global Law School, O.P Jindal Global University
Modern statehood is an act of erasure and a product of colonial boundary making.
It is an account of violence in which law and artificial frontiers came together to create a disembodied sense of belonging through ideas of ‘territorial sovereignty’ and ‘citizens’.
In Eurocentric international law, the sovereign state came to be through colonial expansion, positivism, homogenization and locating borders in abstract ideas of security and containment.
Post-colonial states were trapped in a strange inheritance of borders that destroys identities and effaces non-European people. With law came the question of identity, belonging and legitimacy – all of which were inherently connected to state-making processes in a region.
However, the language of international law ably dissociated this enquiry from its deep-seated roots in the ‘state’.
This work seeks to reimagine the relationship between law, land and the state by revisiting various sites and forms of sovereign territoriality to reengage with the most significant stakeholders of state-making – the people.
To do this, it engages with Kashmir as a site of legal unpacking. While most TWAIL arguments contend with the oppressive heuristics of the colonial and postcolonial state, Kashmir may be a challenge to modern statehood itself.
About the speaker
Rohini Sen is an Assistant Professor, Assistant Dean (International Collaborations) and Assistant Director, Centre for Human Rights Studies at the Jindal Global Law School, O.P Jindal Global University. She is pursuing her PhD from the School of Law, University of Warwick as a Chancellor’s Scholar.
Rohini’s broad research interests are Critical Approaches to International Law, pedagogy, post-colonial feminism, queer theory, Marxism and intersection of international law and history. Her current research focuses on:
- Critical pedagogy and its dialogical relationship with the pedagogue and the discipline of critical international law.
- Formal and informal barriers to the workings of Sexual Harassment Committees in Indian Higher Education Institutes.