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School of Law

State Crime Journal Special Issue Panel: The Covid-19 Pandemic and State Crime

When: Wednesday, April 14, 2021, 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Where: Online,

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The International State Crime Initiative (ISCI) is thrilled to bring together the editors and contributors of a special issue of the State Crime Journal to discuss how governments worldwide are using the Covid-19 pandemic to violate democratic norms and fundamental human rights. The panel will take place on Wednesday, 14th April, 2pm-3.30pm London (9am - 10.30am New York , 4.00pm-5.30pm Istanbul).

From military crackdowns to authoritarian power grabs and enhanced governmental surveillance, states across the globe are signaling worrying trends in terms of their efforts to exploit the global pandemic to secure their own power and privilege. In addition to state crimes characterised by mass governmental over-reach to undercut basic freedoms, Covid-19 has also revealed the link between prior structural crimes and the pandemic’s effects on human rights and the life chances of millions. Moreover, state responses to the pandemic are showing how violence produced within and through social structures is both a driving force and manifestation of state crime.

Engaging with their different areas of research, the panelists and contributors to the State Crime Journal will speak about these dynamics and highlight the complex linkages that are emerging between the pandemic and past and present forms of state criminality. Specifically, they will discuss: the effects of the pandemic on global food system workers trapped in conditions of modern slavery; the disproportionate impacts of the virus on Native American communities; and the consequences of “state organised race crime” in the context of U.S. mass incarceration.

About the Speakers

Neve Gordon is a Professor of International Law and Human Rights at Queen Mary University School of Law and an Executive Board Member of the International State Crime Initiative. Professor Gordon’s research focuses on international humanitarian law, human rights, new warfare technologies, the ethics of violence, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Professor Gordon’s latest book, Human Shields: A History of People in the Line of Fire (with Nicola Perugini, University of California Press 2020), follows the marginal and controversial figure of the human shield over a period of 150 years in order to interrogate the laws of war and how the ethics of humane violence is produced.

Hilal Elver is a served as the Special Rapporteur on the right to food between May 2014 to April 2020, where she was responsible for carrying out the right to food mandate as prescribed by the United Nations Human Rights Council. Professor Elver is international law professor and a Global Distinguished Fellow at the UCLA Law School Resnick Food Law and Policy Center, and a research professor at the UC Santa Barbara, where she has been Distinguished Visiting Professor since 2002. Her publications have focused on environmental law, climate change, food security, human rights and women rights, and her most recent co-edited book with Paul Wapner is Reimagining Climate Change published in 2016 by Routledge Press.

Laura Finley is a Professor of Sociology and Criminology at Barry University. Dr Finley’s work focuses on critical issues in criminal justice, juvenile delinquency, international perspectives on crime and criminal justice, sociology of violence, elite and organized crime, and perspective consciousness and social justice. Dr Finley is the author or co-author of several books on various social justice topics as well as numerous journal articles and book chapters.

Elizabeth Bradshaw is a Professor in Sociology at Central Michigan University. Dr Bradshaw has published widely on the intersection of state-corporate crime and green criminology including state-corporate environmental crime in the fossil fuel industry, resistance by social movements to crimes of the powerful, and toxic prisons as a form of green state crime.

**Please note this is an online event and all registrants will be sent joining instructions on the day of the event.