Monday, 11 July 2016: 16:00-17:30
Location: Seminarsaal 20 (Juridicum)RC12 Sociology of Law (host committee)
Much research is currently focused on morality and ethology and also on politics and ethology. Much less research is instead being done in the field of law and ethology. This may be due to the fact that the term “law” conveys the idea of a highly institutionalized linguistic phenomena (“to lay down”).
However, if one accepts a notion of law which includes informal social rules applied in a society, the legal relevance of many phenomena investigated by ethologists (which include family relationships, hierarchy, reciprocity and revenge, protection of possession, conflict resolution) becomes evident; it is evident that their human counterparts are considered as the object of legal sociology and legal anthropology.
Legal ethology can be addressed, among others, in two completely different (though not incompatible) ways. In one case, the social scientist searches for the biological roots of human legal phenomena. In the other one, the social scientist searches in non-human animals for forerunners of cultural phenomena that fully manifest themselves only in human animals, understood as somewhat anomalous animals.
Legal ethology can thus enrich both our understanding of human legal phenomena (by highlighting their biological roots) and of animal societies (by bringing into ethological studies an awareness of questions which are traditionally at the center of the study of legal phenomena among humans).
This session aims at discussing all issues related with legal ethology.