Law and Love (in and beyond Pandemic Times) - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

Accessibility links

Law and Love (in and beyond Pandemic Times)

USC School of Law and Society is proud to host the 2021 conference of the Law, Literature and the Humanities Association of Australasia - Law and Love (in and beyond Pandemic Times): Images and Narratives, Histories and Cultures.

Monday, 29 November - Thursday, 2 December 2021

USC Sunshine Coast, Sippy Downs + online

In-person or virtual participation options available for all sessions.


Call for papers - now closed

Love, like the law, operates through exceptionality. It functions through the recognition of the individual, calling them out from the set of the population to bestow upon them an exceptional relational status. This exceptionality of love would appear to be in tension with the law and its notion of an equality that treats all the same—the rule of law’s protection of the individual by rendering them a subject equal to all other legal subjects. Love therefore provides the basis for a critique of the law, its failed objectivity, its lack of care for and recognition of the other. At the same time, love’s functioning through exceptionality presents a structural alignment with the law and its own constitutive relation to the exception. Law and love are both forms of sociality that at various times are argued to be the founding of community, reflective of modes of being-in-relation, our ‘being together’. What are we to make of the intersections of these modes of sociality in the pandemic times in which we live?

For many of us, the ‘being together’ that we experienced at the ‘Law in the End Times’ conference of the Association in 2019 would, in the months to follow, become a fond memory of academic life—quickly disrupted by lock-downs and shut-downs, working and schooling from home, institutional restructures and the increased precarity of academic employment, social distancing and masks, and the promises of vaccinations to ‘get the economy going’. The demand for adherence to both the crisis measures and the ‘new’ normal to come that we have experienced is founded on law but then justified by a sense of love—that we make sacrifice for our loved ones, our communities, our societies, nations and economies. Law and love are not, here, presented as antinomies, but rather intertwined in the biopolitical demands of a state in (and thriving on) crisis. Is this all that love has become—a mechanism of shoring up legality, demanding a legitimacy for the dialectic of health and economy?

It is in response to these concerns that we call for a consideration of the themes of law and love, their tensions and parallels, interrelations and distinctions—and their necessity for our human and non-human being together—in and beyond the times in which we live. In the face of such crises and concerns, the need for law and humanities scholarship is more and not less important—not in the least because such crises function through the cultural images, narratives and histories that we are equipped to interrogate and analyse. The times in which we live, of which the current pandemic is only an aspect, have seen not only increased deployment of legal exceptionality but also greater calls for love and justice, of care and sociality, and of the necessity of recognising the importance of our being together. It is in this context that we call for papers in the broad and deep traditions of law and humanities scholarship that helps us to think the importance of both law and love—and their tensions and interrelations—in and beyond these pandemic times.

Papers and panels could include themes such as:

  • Love as Critique of the Images of Law
  • Narratives of Desire as the Source of Law
  • Love and the Cultural Legalities of Corporate Life
  • The Histories, Futures and Temporalities of Life and Love in the Law
  • Love of the Law: Stabilisation and Exceptionality
  • Indigenous Sovereignties, Indigenous Jurisprudence and Answering Statements from the Heart
  • Love, Rights and (Un)lawful Relations
  • Empathy and the Affective Life of Law
  • Law and Love in (and out of) Religion
  • Images of Posthumanism, Love of Other Beings and Ecological Justice
  • The Legalities of Embrace and Care in contexts of Social Distancing
  • The Resilience of Love and Protests for Life (Black Lives Matters, March 4 Justice, Extinction Rebellion)
  • Love and the Biopolitics of Personhood
  • Indigenous Law/Lore, Narratives of Love and Relational Ecologies
  • Love Ethic as/and Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Being Together and the Office of the (Law and Humanities) Scholar

In addition, papers and panels across the broad spectrum of law, literature and the humanities can also be presented.

Confirmed Keynote and Plenary Speakers

Associate Professor Ioannis Ziogas

Department of Classics and Ancient History, Durham University (UK)

Maria Giannacopoulos
Dr Maria Giannacopoulos

Flinders University

Dr Claire Loughnan - University of Melbourne
Dr Claire Loughnan

University of Melbourne

Conference Host

USC Senior Lecturer in Law Dr Timothy Peters
Dr Timothy Peters

Dr Timothy Peters, School of Law and Society, USC

Organising Committee

Dr Dale Mitchell, School of Law and Society, USC

Dr Ashley Pearson, School of Law and Society, USC

Dr Dyann Ross, School of Law and Society, USC

Dr Timothy Peters, School of Law and Society, USC

Justine Poon, School of Law and Society, USC

Jordan Belor, School of Law and Society, USC

Vincent Goding, School of Law and Society, USC

Registrations Now Open

Each registration includes annual membership of the Law, Literature and Humanities Association of Australasia.

In-person registrations - close 15 November 2021

  • AU$400 Full Registration (in-person, 30 November to 2 December)
  • AU$180 Postgraduate/HDR Registration (in-person 30 November to 2 December and includes attendance at Postgraduate Workshop on 29 November)
  • AU$180 Unwaged Registration (in-person 30 November to 2 December)
  • Conference Dinner to be held Wednesday 1 December. Further details and additional costs will be confirmed shortly.

Online registrations - close 22 November 2021

  • AU$180 Online Registration (30 November to 2 December)
  • AU$180 Online Postgraduate/HDR Registration (30 November to 2 December and includes attendance at Postgraduate Workshop on 29 November)
  • AU$180 Online Unwaged Registration (30 November to 2 December)

Please note: the Law and Love (in and beyond Pandemic Times) Conference will be held fully online if in-person attendance is not permittable due to Queensland Health COVID-19 directive. Refunds of the balance between in-person and online registrations will be provided.

Law and Love (in and beyond Pandemic Times) conference will be held at the USC Sunshine Coast Campus and via online on Monday 29 November - Thursday 2 December 2021.

The Sunshine Coast is a fast-growing regional area of South East Queensland approximately 1 hour north of Brisbane; Queensland’s capital and largest city.

How do I get there?
By car

There is all day paid parking $5 at USC Sunshine Coast Campus. Please see the USC Sunshine Coast Campus map for details.

By public transport

Travel to the Sunshine Coast from Brisbane can be planned on public transport through Translink, South East Queensland’s public transport provider. Destination: USC Station.

By air

You can fly directly to the Sunshine Coast. Flights to and from Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Auckland are serviced by the Sunshine Coast Airport. Alternatively, you can fly into Brisbane airport. See Con-X-ion shuttle bus option from Brisbane airport to the Sunshine Coast or Sunshine Coast Airport to Mooloolaba.

Where should I stay?

Mooloolaba is a coastal suburb and tourist resort township on the Sunshine Coast, is located 97km north of Brisbane and is just a 10 minute drive to USC Sunshine Coast. There are a number of accommodation options in Mooloolaba and surrounding areas.

Mooloolaba is a 15 minute drive to the USC Sunshine Coast campus and a 15 minute drive to the Sunshine Coast airport.

Conference delegate can access Mantra Mooloolaba Beach USC rates by contacting Brenden Whittred at Campus Travel:

Tel: +61 7 3083 0266


  • One Bedroom AU$156 per night
  • One Bedroom Superior AU$171 per night
  • One Bedroom Ocean View AU$176 per night
  • Two Bedroom AU$216 per night

A booking fee of $22 applies on top of accommodation rates. Final payment will be required at checkout.