The 30th annual conference of the Australia and New Zealand Law and History Society will be held in Brisbane, Australia, 12-13 December 2011.

The 2011 conference theme – “Private Law, Public Lives” - examines the social dimensions of private law in history. What has been the historical role of private law in the creation of core social values? How did private law in areas such as the laws of marriage, property, succession, labour or contract, for example, shape colonial and postcolonial societies? What are the wider social implications of family law as well as commercial, corporations, competition or insurance law in the common law world and beyond? Proposals are invited from scholars in the fields of law, history and related disciplines. Proposals from all jurisdictions are welcome.

The conference is hosted by UQ's TC Beirne School of Law and Faculty of Arts, and will be held at the historic Customs House, located on the shores of the Brisbane River.

Highlights of this year’s conference include twin keynote speakers: Professor John McLaren, professor emeritus of the Law School, University of Victoria, BC, Canada, and author of the forthcoming Dewigged, Bothered and Bewildered: British Colonial Judges on Trial (University of Toronto Press, 2011), and Professor Rosalind Croucher, President of the Australian Law Reform Commission.

Also, by special arrangement with the American Society for Legal History, we will be including a panel from the ASLH, including Professor Constance Backhouse, Distinguished University Professor, University of Ottawa and President of the ASLH; and Professor Chris Tomlins, Chancellor’s Professor of Law, University of California, Irvine.

Details concerning the Bruce Kercher Conference Scholarships can be found at the following link:


Paper proposals, including paper title, abstract (300 words max.) and brief author bio, should be sent by email to the Conference committee at the following address: by 14 July 2011.