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Shaking the legal foundations of corporate power

David Whyte

Tuesday 23 January 2018, 4.00PM to 5.30pm

Speaker(s): Professor David Whyte, University of Liverpool

Social and Political Sciences Seminar Series

This lecture will analyse the historical development of legal categories that apply to corporations as a series of 'exceptional measures' in law that provide corporations with the capacity to commit crime with impunity. David argues that those legal foundations are precisely the same foundations upon which corporate power rests. He develops a typology of those legal exceptions along the following categories: the corporation as a form of public entity; the corporation as a form of private property; the corporation as a political citizen; and the corporation as a responsible actor. The talk uses this typology to show how, in a range of different ways, legal challenges to corporate crime tend to have the effect of shoring up, rather than challenging the legal foundations of corporate power.  David therefore argues that a meaningful challenge to the capacity of corporations to commit crimes must challenge the legal foundations of corporate power.

Speaker biography:  David Whyte is Professor of Socio-legal Studies at the University of Liverpool where he teaches and researches on the relationship between corporate power and law. His most recent publications are The Violence of Austerity (ed. with Vickie Cooper, Pluto, 2017) and Corporate Human Rights Violations (with Stefanie Khourie, Routledge, 2017). He is an Executive Committee member of the Institute of Employment Rights and an Advisory Board member of Corporate Watch.

Other lectures in this series include: 

Location: Room ARC/014, Alcuin Research Resources Centre

Admission: is by free ticket only. Please book below.

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