„The corporation and law in the making of global capitalism”, Dr. Grietje Baars (University of London)
28 October 2019 @ 17:00 – 18:30
Legal Histories Beyond the State Seminar (LHBS) lecture summary: Dr Baars will draw on their recent book, The Corporation, Law and Capitalism, which offers a radical Marxist perspective on the role of law in the global political economy. Closing a major gap in historical-materialist scholarship, the book demonstrates how the corporation, capitalism’s main engine from city-state and colonial times to the present multinational, is a masterpiece of legal technology. The symbiosis between law and capital becomes acutely apparent in the question of ‘corporate accountability’. Baars provides a detailed analysis of corporate human rights and war crimes trials, from the Nuremberg industrialists’ trials to current efforts. They show that precisely because of law’s relationship to capital, law cannot prevent or remedy the ‘externalities’ produced by corporate capitalism. This realisation will generate the space required to formulate a different answer to ‘the question of the corporation’, and to global corporate capitalism more broadly, outside of the law.
Dr Grietje Baars is a Senior Lecture at the City Law School, University of London.