Oceans as Archives: A Conversation between Renisa Mawani and Mikki Stelder

Key information

6:00 pm
1st Floor, Paul Webley Wing, SOAS
Wolfson Lecture Theatre

About this event

Event header image: speakers

The Centre for Law & Social Change (City, University of London) and the Centre for Gender Studies with the School of Law, Gender and Media (SOAS University of London) are delighted to invite you to an interdisciplinary conversation on 'Oceans as Archives'.

  • Speakers: Professor Renisa Mawani & Dr Mikki Stelder
  • Chair: Dr Grietje Baars

As part of the Fertile Ground: Interdisciplinary Conversations series and the Law & Race Roundtable, we offer you a conversation between socio-legal historian Professor Renisa Mawani (UBC, Canada) and cultural studies scholar Dr Mikki Stelder (University of Utrecht, The Netherlands). Our conversants will discuss the roots, currents and capillaries of the relationships between law, race, colonialism and environmental destruction by turning to oceans. Drawing on oceans as archive as their orientation, Renisa and Mikki will navigate an original course through the choppy waters of law’s oceanic empire and imaginaries.

Renisa Mawani is Canada Research Chair in Colonial Legal Histories and Professor of Sociology at the University of British Columbia, located on the unceded territories of the Musqueam (xʷməθkʷəy̓əm) peoples. She is also Global Professorial Fellow at the School of Law, QMUL. She is the author of Across Oceans of Law (Duke University Press, 2018), which was a finalist for the UK Socio-Legal Studies Association Theory and History Book Prize (2020) and winner of the Association of Asian American Studies Book Prize for Outstanding Contribution to History (2020).

Mikki Stelder is a lecturer in gender and postcolonial studies at Utrecht University and has recently completed a three-year Marie Skłodowska-Curie Global Fellowship for their project Maritime Imagination: A Cultural Oceanography of Dutch Imperialism and its Aftermaths. They received the 2022 ASCA Academic Article of the Year Award for “The Colonial Difference in Hugo Grotius: Rational Man, Slavery and Indigenous Dispossession”, published in Postcolonial Studies.  

The event is chaired by Grietje Baars, co-director of the Centre for Law & Social Change at City, University of London.


The event is free, but please register.

The event is hybrid, and a Zoom link will be sent to all registered participants on the day. We will also post a recording to our website after the event.