Can one have a legal right to disobey a law?

3 December 2009

Time: 6:30pm

In his inauqural lecture, Professor David Schiff will examine the practise of civil disobedience. Applying a modern systems theory approach, he will consider the difficulties, for the political and legal systems, of recognising claims that it is right, or that one can have a right, to disobey the law, taking the example of recent House of Lords decision in the Debbie Purdy case, which resulted in the DPP being required to issue guidance to enable those who wish to break the law on assisted suicide to learn when this might be done with little risk of prosecution.

David Schiff joined Queen Mary in September 2006 as a Professor of Law, having previously held the position of Reader in Law at the LSE where he had been teaching since 1973. During his academic career he has researched and published on emergency powers, the sociology of law, the English Legal System, civil liberties, the interface between law and the media, miscarriages of justice and criminal appeals, and the application of modern systems theory to jurisprudence and legal theory. The last three are his current research interests.

Contact information:

David Schiff
Tel: +44 20 7882 3276