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Narratives and Normativity: Totalitarianism and Narrative Change in the European Legal Tradition after World War II

  • Kaius Tuori


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He thanks the members of the research project “Reinventing the Foundations of European Legal Culture 1934–1964”—Drs. Heta Björklund, Magdalena Kmak, Tommaso Beggio, Ville Erkkilä, and Jacob Giltai—for their advice and help. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013)/ERC grant agreement no. 313100.



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1. On historical narratives, see Rigney, Ann, “History as Text: Narrative Theory and History,” in Sage Handbook of Historical Theory, ed. Partner, Nancy and Foot, Sarah (London: SAGE Publications Ltd, 2012), 183201; Ankersmit, Frank R., Meaning, Truth, and Reference in Historical Representation (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2012); Munslow, Alun, Narrative and History (London: Macmillan, 2007); Ricoeur, Paul, Time and Narrative (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1990); and Carr, David, Time, Narrative, and History (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1986).

2. See, for example, Duranti, Marco, The Conservative Human Rights Revolution: European Identity, Transnational Politics, and the Origins of the European Convention (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017).

3. In addition to the works of Koschaker and Wieacker dealt with in this article, some of the most influential books promoting the same narrative are Bellomo, Manlio, The Common Legal Past of Europe: 1000–1800 (Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 1995); Stein, Peter, Roman Law in European History (New York and Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999); and Grossi, Paolo, A History of European Law (Chichester, West Sussex, UK and Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010).

4. Summarized in Svenungsson, Jayne, “After Utopia: On the Post-war Debates on History and Ideology,” Storiografia 18 (2015): 203–18.

5. An important exception is Thomas Duve, “European Legal History––Global Perspectives,” Working Paper for the Colloquium, European Normativity––Global Historical Perspectives (Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, September, 2–4, 2013), Max Planck Institute for European Legal History Research Paper Series No. 2013-06, August 5, 2013, 9. or (accessed March 20, 2019).

6. Ernst, Wolfgang, “Fritz Schulz,” in Jurists Uprooted: German-speaking Émigré Lawyers in Twentieth-century Britain, ed. Beatson, Jack and Zimmermann, Reinhard (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), 106204.

7. Honoré, Tony, “Fritz Pringsheim,” in Jurists Uprooted: German-speaking Émigré Lawyers in Twentieth-century Britain, ed. Beatson, Jack and Zimmermann, Reinhard (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), 205233.

8. Schulz, Fritz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts (München: Duncker & Humblot, 1934); and Schulz, Fritz, Roman Legal Science (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1946).

9. Pringsheim, Fritz, “The Legal Policy and Reforms of Hadrian,” Journal of Roman Studies 24 (1934): 141–53; and Pringsheim, Fritz, “Höhe und Ende der Römischen Jurisprudenz,” in Gesammelte Abhandlungen (Heidelberg: Winter Verlag, 1961), 5362.

10. Giaro, Tomasz, Aktualisierung Europas, Gespräche mit Paul Koschaker (Genoa: Name, 2000); and Beggio, Tommaso, Paul Koschaker (1879–1951): Rediscovering the Roman Foundations of the European Legal Tradition (Heidelberg: Winter Verlag, 2018).

11. Koschaker, Paul, “Die Krise des römischen Rechts und romanistische Rechtswissenschaft,” in Schriften der Akademie für Deutsches Recht: Römisches Recht und fremde Rechte, vol. 1 (München: Duncker & Humblot, 1938), 186; and Koschaker, Paul, Europa und das Römisches Recht (München: Duncker & Humblot, 1947).

12. Winkler, Viktor, Der Kampf gegen die Rechtswissenschaft. Franz Wieackers “Privatrechtsgeschichte der Neuzeit” und die deutsche Rechtswissenschaft des 20. Jahrhunderts (Hamburg: Verlag Dr. Kovač, 2014); and Erkkilä, Ville, The Conceptual Change of Conscience: Franz Wieacker and German Legal Historiography 1933–1968 (Helsinki: Unigrafia, 2017), available online at

13. Beyond short notes and an autobiography (Coing, Helmut, Für Wissenschaften und Künste. Lebensbericht eines europäischen Rechtsgelehrten, hrsg., kommentiert und mit einem Nachwort von Michael F. Feldkamp [Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2013]), no major study on Coing exists.

14. Wieacker, Franz, Das römische Recht und das deutsche Rechtsbewußtsein (Leipzig: Barth, 1944); and Wieacker, Franz, Privatrechtsgeschichte der Neuzeit (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1952).

15. Coing, Helmut, “Zum Einfluss der Philosophie des Aristoteles auf die Entwicklung des römisches Rechts,” Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte: Romanistische Abteilung 69 (1952): 2459; Coing, Helmut, “Römisches Recht in Deutschland,” Ius Romanum Medii Aevi 5 (1964): 2628; and Coing, Helmut, “Die ursprüngliche Einheit der europäischen Rechtswissenschaft,” in Gesammelte Aufsätze II (Frankfurt am Main: Klostermann, 1982), 137–56.

16. Fermi, Laura, Illustrious Immigrants: The Intellectual Migration from Europe 1930–1941 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1968); Ash, Mitchell G. and Söllner, Alfons, eds., Forced Migration and Scientific Change: Émigré German-Speaking Scientists and Scholars after 1933 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996); Rösch, Felix, Émigré Scholars and the Genesis of International Relations: A European Discipline in America? (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). On exiled lawyers, see also Graham, Kyle, “The Refugee Jurist and American Law Schools, 1933–1941,” American Journal of Comparative Law 50 (2002): 777; Lutter, Marcus, Stiefel, Ernst C., and Hoeflich, Michael H., eds., Der Einfluß deutscher Emigranten auf die Rechtsentwicklung in den USA und in Deutschland. Vorträge und Referate des Bonner Symposions im September 1991 (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1993); and Breunung, Leonie and Walther, Manfred, Die Emigration deutscher Rechtswissenschaftler ab 1933, vol. 1 (Göttingen: De Gruyter, 2012), second volume forthcoming.

17. Martin, Benjamin George, The Nazi-Fascist New Order for European Culture (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2016).

18. Sluga, Glenda, Internationalism in the Age of Nationalism (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013); and Svenungsson, “After Utopia,” 203–18.

19. Hewitson, Mark and D'Auria, Matthew, eds., Europe in Crisis: Intellectuals and the European Idea 1917–1957 (Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2012).

20. A good example is Joerges, Christian and Ghaleigh, Navrag Singh, eds., Darker Legacies of Law in Europe (Cambridge: Hart, 2003).

21. Ankersmit, Meaning, Truth, and Reference in Historical Representation; and Rüsen, Jörn, “Historik: Umriss einer Theorie der Geschichtswissenschaft,” Erwägen-Wissen-Ethik 22 (2011): 477619.

22. James Q. Whitman, “Long Live the Hatred of Roman Law!” Yale Law School, Public Law Working Paper No. 36. (accessed March 20, 2019).

23. Paragraph 19 of the NSDAP party program from February 24, 1920: “We demand that Roman Law, which serves a materialistic world order, be replaced by a German common law.”

24. There is an immense amount of literature on the intellectual crisis; see, for example, Geyer, Martin H., Verkehrte Welt: Revolution, Inflation und Moderne, München 1914–1924 (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1998), or Keedus, Liisi, Crisis of German Historicism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015).

25. Regarding changes among the legal profession, see Ledford, Kenneth F., “German Lawyers and the State in the Weimar Republic,” Law and History Review 13 (1995): 317–49. On the Bildungsbürgertum, see Kocka, Jürgen, “Bürgertum und Bürgerlichkeit als Probleme der deutschen Geschichte vom späten 18. zum frühen 20. Jahrhundert,” in Bürger und Bürgerlichkeit im 19 Jahrhundert, ed. Kocka, Jürgen (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1987), 2163. On the idea of a generational crisis, see Mommsen, Hans, “Generationskonflikt und Jugendrevolte in der Weimarer Republik,” in “Mit uns zieht die neue Zeit.” Der Mythos Jugend, ed. Koebner, Thomas, Janz, Rolf–Peter, and Trommler, Frank (Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1985), 5067. The sense of crisis spread, setting off debates on the crises of science and reason. See Ortega y Gasset, José, Man and Crisis, trans. Adams, Mildred (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1958); and Valéry, Paul, History and Politics (New York: Pantheon Books, 1962).

26. Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service in April 7, 1933 (Gesetz zur Wiederherstellung des Berufsbeamtentums [hereafter GWBB], Reichsgesetzblatt. I 175). This law was subsequently enlarged to include different categories such as notaries, and numerous ordinances were used to implement it.

27. “Nazi Purge at Universities - Long List of Dismissals,” The Manchester Guardian Weekly, May 19, 1933, 399.

28. Wheatland, Thomas, “Franz L. Neumann: Negotiating Political Exile,” Bulletin of the German Historical Institute 54, suppl. 10 (2014): 111–38.

29. The biographical details have been gathered from Ernst, “Fritz Schulz”; Jacob Giltaij, Fritz Schulz (forthcoming); and Niedermeyer, Hans and Flume, Werner, eds., Festschrift Fritz Schulz 2 Bde. (Weimar: Verlag Hermann Böhlaus Nachfolger, 1951).

30. The main early works of Schulz are: Sabinus–Fragmente in Ulpians Sabinus–Commentar (Halle: M. Niemeyer, 1906); “System der Rechte auf den Eingriffserwerb,” Archiv für die civilistische Praxis 105 (1909): 1–488; Einführung in das Studium der Digesten (Tübingen: Verlag von J. C. B. Mohr [Paul Siebeck], 1916); Kantorowicz, Hermann, ed., De claris iuris consultis by Thomas Diplovatatius (Berlin: W. de Gruyter, 1919); and Die epitome Ulpiani des Codex vaticanus reginæ 1128 (Bonn: A. Marcus und E. Weber, 1926).

31. Humboldt–Universität zu Berlin, Universitätsarchiv zu Berlin, UK Personalia Sch 303, Personal–Akten des Prof Dr Schulz; Ernst, “Fritz Schulz,” 14–25. On the transformation of the Berlin law faculty, see von Lösch, Anna Maria Gräfin, Der nackte Geist. Die juristische Fakultät der Berliner Universität im Umbruch von 1933 (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1999).

32. Honoré, “Fritz Pringsheim,” 220.

33. Ernst, “Fritz Schulz,” 139–40.

34. Strauss, Leo, Persecution and the Art of Writing (Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1988), 2425.

35. Remy, Steven P., The Heidelberg Myth: The Nazification and Denazification of a German University (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003), 21.

36. Gemie, Sharif, Humbert, Laure, and Reid, Fiona, Outcast Europe: Refugees and Relief Workers in an Era of Total War 1936–48 (London: Bloomsbury, 2011); and Milza, Pierre and Peschanski, Denis, eds., Exils et migration. Italiens et Espagnols en France, 1938–1946 (Paris: Editions L'Harmattan, 1994).

37. Tuori, Kaius, “Exiled Romanists between Traditions: Pringsheim, Schulz and Daube,” in Roman Law and the Idea of Europe, ed. Tuori, Kaius and Björklund, Heta (London: Bloomsbury, 2019), 3551.

38. Koontz, Claudia, The Nazi Conscience (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003), 4668 on academic capitulation; and Lerner, Robert E., Ernst Kantorowicz: A Life (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2017), 159–71, quote at 159. Lerner rejects as absurd Cantor's claims that Kantorowicz was a Nazi sympathizer.

39. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 1, readily admitted that the Romans themselves did not really talk about principles of law, as their focus was different. But see Winkel, Laurens C., “The Role of General Principles in Roman Law,” Fundamina 2 (1996): 103–20.

40. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 13–26. In addition to the works of Carl Schmitt, where this idea of the submission of law to politics was repeatedly stated, it was expressed more bluntly by less refined lawyers such as Hildebrandt, Heinz, Rechtsfindung im neuen deutschen Staate: ein Beitrag zur Rezeption und den Rechtsquellen, zur Auslegung und Ergaenzung des Gesetzes (Berlin: W. de Gruyter, 1935), translated in Benson, Carolyn and Fink, Julian, “New Perspectives on Nazi Law,” Jurisprudence 3 (2) (2012): 341–46, at 31–32: “The initial point of national socialism is neither the individual nor humanity, but the entire German people; its aim is the securing and promotion of the German blood community … . The outcome of this are certain principles of law: first, the unconditional alignment of the correctness of the law with the general good and the future of the German blood community; second, the constant evaluative primacy of the correctness of law over legal security; and third, the increased acceptance of legal flexibility over legal constancy!”

41. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 57–73. The Volksgesetzbuch project was headed by Nazi legal historian Justus Hedemann, but beyond a few publications the initiative foundered. See Mohnhaupt, Heinz, “Justus Wilhelm Hedemann als Rechtshistoriker und Zivilrechtler vor und während der Epoche des Nationalsozialismus,” in Rechtsgeschichte im Nationalsozialismus: Beiträge zu einer Disziplin, ed. Stolleis, Michael and Simon, Dieter (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1989), 107–59.

42. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 74–94. The idea behind the law of the blood community was that the innate sense or feeling of law should be supreme.

43. Schermaier, Martin Josef, “Fritz Schulz’ Prinzipien. Das Ende einer deutschen Universitätslaufbahn im Berlin der Dreißigerjahre,” in Festschrift 200 Jahre juristische Fakultät der Humboldt–Universität zu Berlin. Geschichte, Gegenwart und Zukunft, ed. Grundmann, Stefan, Kloepfer, Michael, and G., Christoph Paulus (Berlin: Hulboldt–Universität, 2010), 694–95. See also Hedemann's letters to Schulz (July 13, 1934 and August 27, 1934, Schulz Archive), showing how even a Nazi might be oblivious to the criticism. Hedemann wrote these two laudatory letters to Schulz about the Prinzipien after receiving a copy from the author. The letters will be published in Giltaij, Fritz Schulz.

44. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 128–50; and Neumann, Franz Leopold, Behemoth: The Structure and Practice of National Socialism, 1933–1944 (London: Rowman & Littlefield, 2009), 452–58. On Roman law and humanity, see Garofalo, Luigi, “L'humanitas tra diritto romano e totalitarismo hitleriano,” Teoria e storia di diritto privato 7 (2015): 148.

45. Rachlin, Robert D., “Roland Freisler and the Volksgerichthof,” in The Law in Nazi Germany: Ideology, Opportunism, and the Perversion of Justice, ed. Steinweis, Alan E. and Rachlin, Robert D. (New York: Berghahn Books, 2013), 6387, at 80.

46. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 151–61. The extreme form that Nazi oppression took meant that people would frequently abandon spouses, friends, and relatives when they were singled out for persecution.

47. Ibid., 162–71. The Nazi sense of legal security was also based on the sense of law shared by the blood community, for example Göring, Hermann, “Die Rechtssicherheit als Grundlage der Volksgemeinschaft,” in Schriften der Akademie für Deutsches Recht, ed. Frank, Hans (Hamburg: Hanseatische Verlagsanstalt, 1935), wrote how law should not be founded on the letter of the law or even on law itself, but rather an innate sense of law; Neumann, Franz, Behemoth: The Structure and Practice of National Socialism 1933–1944 (New York: Harper & Row, 1944), 440–50.

48. Schulz, Prinzipien des römischen Rechts, 172; Schulz, Fritz, Principles of Roman Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1936), 253.

49. The same themes come up in both Pringsheim, “Höhe und Ende der Römischen Jurisprudenz” and Pringsheim, “The Legal Policy and Reforms of Hadrian,” but the conclusions drawn and the explicitness with which they are presented are markedly different, the German text being much more technical and understated.

50. Kaser, Max, Römisches Recht als Gemeinschaftsordnung (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1939), 89: “Das stolze Bild das Schönbauer hier von echtem Römertum entworfen hat, erinnert in manchen Zügen stark an die ältere deutsche Rechtsgeschichte, sind es doch die gleiche Tugenden, ‘männliche Selbstzucht, nationaler Instinkt, starkes Sendungsbewußtsein, Größe im Unglück und Opferbereitschaft für das Gemeinwesen’, die den Character beider Völker bestimmen.” (The proud image that Schönbauer provides us of genuine Romans, resembles in many ways strongly the older German legal history. The same virtues, “manly self-discipline, national instinct, strong sense of mission, greatness in misfortune and willingness for sacrifice for the common good,” define the character of both peoples.) Wieacker, Franz, Vom römischen Recht. Wirklichkeit und Überlieferung (Leipzig: Koehler & Ameland, 1944). On approaches to Roman law, see Miglietta, Massimo and Santucci, Gianni, eds., Diritto romano e regimi totalitari nel ’900 Europeo (Trento: Università degli studi di Trento, 2009); and Nelis, Jan, “Constructing Fascist Identity: Benito Mussolini and the Myth of Romanità,” Classical World 100 (2007): 391415.

51. Even the British tradition of liberalism was inexorably tied to reflections and reactions to the Continent, as is visible in works such as Acton, Lord, History of Freedom (London: Macmillan, 1907).

52. There is a wealth of examples of men and women of dignity and conscience who met untimely ends, but few are as compelling as the story of Max Hirschberg, who actually sought to bring Hitler to court and lived. Morris, Douglas G., Justice Imperiled: The Anti–Nazi Lawyer Max Hirschberg in Weimar Germany (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2005).

53. Ernst, “Fritz Schulz,” 158–60; and Honoré, “Fritz Pringsheim,” 221–23; Carmichael, Calum, Ideas and the Man: Remembering David Daube (Frankfurt: Vittorio Klostermann Verlag, 2004), 63; and Stray, Christopher, “Eduard Fraenkel (1888–1970),” in Ark of Civilization: Refugee Scholars and Oxford University, 1930–1945, ed. Crawford, Sally, Ulmschneider, Katharina, and Elsner, Jaś (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), 185–87. Even someone like Kenneth Sisam, who was instrumental in helping exiles in Britain, reveals in his correspondence his lack of patience for the refugees and their complaints. Oxford University Press Archives, Oxford, Schulz PB ED 010382, 47 Sisam to C. H. S. Fifoot (October 17, 1939): “I cannot stand the refugees who are always grumbling about their lot at a time when most of us have something hard to think about; but a few of them, and Schulz is one, are of a different class, and recognize that they are lucky to be here.”

54. Momigliano, Arnaldo, “Peace and Liberty in the Ancient World,” in Decimo contributo alla storia degli studi classici e del mondo antico, ed. di Donato, Riccardo (Roma: Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura, 2012), vol. 1: 4105, at 9; Murray, Oswyn, “Arnaldo Momigliano on Peace and Liberty,” in Ark of Civilization: Refugee Scholars and Oxford University, 1930–1945, ed. Crawford, Sally, Ulmschneider, Katharina, and Elsner, Jaś (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), 204–5; and Neumann, Behemoth, 440–52.

55. Adorno, Theodor, “Scientific Experiences of a European Scholar in America,” in The Intellectual Migration: Europe and America, 1930–1960, ed. Fleming, Donald and Bailyn, Bernard (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1969), 338–70.

56. On the Neue Rechtswissenschaft, see Rüthers, Bernd, Die unbegrenzte Auslegung (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2017).

57. For a summary of the literature and the example of Heidelberg, see Remy, The Heidelberg Myth, 28–33. On the different interpretations of the war generation, see Koontz, The Nazi Conscience, 49; and Herbert, Ulrich, “‘Generation der Sachlichkeit’. Die völkische Studentenbewegung der frühen zwanziger Jahre in Deutschland,” in Zivilisation und Barbarei, Die widersprüchlichen Potentiale der Moderne, ed. Bajohr, Frank, Johe, Werner, and Lohalm, Uwe (Hamburg: Hans Christians Verlag, 1991), 115–43, where Koontz represents the view that it was actually the generation that had gone to war, the ones born during the 1880s and 1990s, whereas Herbert and others see the generation as comprising those born during 1900–1919.

58. Döhring, Ernst, “Geschichte der Juristischen Fakultät 1665–1965,” in Geschichte der Christian–Albrechts–Universität Kiel 1665–1965. Bd 3, ed. Jordan, Karl and Hofmann, Erich (Neumünster: Wachholtz, 1969), 209–11. The members of the Kieler Schule were Karl August Eckhardt, Paul Ritterbusch, Ernst Huber, Karl Larenz, Karl Michaelis, Friedrich Schaffstein, and others.

59. On the variations within the authors of the Nazi era, see Pauer–Studer, Herlinde and Fink, Julian, eds., Rechtfertigungen des Unrechts. Das Rechtsdenken im Nationalsozialismus in Originaltexten (Berlin: Suhrkamp, 2014).

60. Hausmann, Frank–Rutger, “Deutsche Geisteswissenschaft” im Zweiten Weltkrieg : die “Aktion Ritterbusch” (1940–1945) (Heidelberg: Synchron, 2007); and Erkkilä, The Conceptual Change of Conscience, 91.

61. Wieacker, Das römische Recht und das deutsche Rechtsbewußtsein, 3–9.

62. Ibid., 10–27 quotations at p. 26.

63. Frank, Hans, “Zur Reform des Rechtsstudiums,” Deutsches Recht 3 (1933): 23.

64. Wieacker to Carl Schmitt November 30, 1941. Nachlass Carl Schmitt, RW 0265, Landesarchiv Nordrhein–Westfalen, Duisburg; and Mehring, Reinhard, Carl Schmitt: Aufstieg und Fall (München: Beck, 2009), 406.

65. Coing, Für Wissenschaften und Künste, 57.

66. Meissel, Franz–Stefan and Wedrac, Stefan, “Strategien der Anpassung –– Römisches Recht im Zeichen des Hakenkreuzes,” in Vertriebenes Recht –– Vertreibendes Recht. Die Wiener Rechts– und Staatswissenschaftliche Fakultät 1938–1945, ed. Meissel, Franz–Stefan, Olechowski, Thomas, Reiter–Zatloukal, Ilse, and Schima, Stefan (Wien: Manz, 2012), 3578.

67. Koschaker, “Die Krise des römischen Rechts und romanistische Rechtswissenschaft”; and Beggio, Paul Koschaker.

68. On the denazification process, see Vollnhals, Clemens, Entnazifizierung. Politische Säuberung und Rehabilitierung in den vier Besatzungszonen 1945–1949 (München: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, 1991). On intellectual reasonings, see Forner, Sean A., German Intellectuals and the Challenge of Democratic Renewal: Culture and Politics after 1945 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014), 6263, 170–71.

69. Koschaker to Kisch April 3, 1948, at 27, and Koschaker to Kisch May 24, 1948, at 29, now in Kisch, Guido, Paul Koschaker, Gelehrter, Mensch, Freund. Briefe aus den Jahren 1940 bis 1951 (Basel: Helbing und Lichtenbahn, 1970).

70. Forner, German Intellectuals and the Challenge of Democratic Renewal, 5–9, 35.

71. Forner, German Intellectuals and the Challenge of Democratic Renewal, 35; and Krauss, Marita, Heimkehr in ein fremdes Land (Münich: Beck, 2001), 910.

72. Greenberg, Udi, The Weimar Century: German Émigrés and the Ideological Foundations of the Cold War (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2015), 67.

73. For the conventional story, see Hunt, Lynn, Inventing Human Rights (New York: Norton, 2007), 200207.

74. Duranti, The Conservative Human Rights Revolution, 4–5.

75. Koschaker, Europa und das Römisches Recht, 346.

76. On the difficulties and the hostility faced by returning exiles, see Krauss, Heimkehr in ein fremdes Land.

77. Bodleian Library, Oxford, Archives of the Society for the Protection of Science and Learning (hereafter SPSL), MS. 272.1, 233 on his schedule; 190, Pringsheim to Ursell (April 3, 1946), on his intent to go to Freiburg in need of a certificate of identity from the Home Office and a return visa; 272.1, 191 Skemp to Under Secretary of State (April 5, 1946), application for traveling papers for Pringsheim, who is willing to assist in the educational reconstruction of Germany, short-term, children remain in Britain. Letters 192–206 about the travel arrangements to Germany show how difficult movement was at the time.

78. Winkler, Der Kampf gegen die Rechtswissenschaft, 571.

79. Wieacker, Franz, “Studien zur Hadrianischen Justizpolitik,” Romanistische Studien: Freiburger Rechtsgeschichtliche Abhandlungen 5 (1935): 4381.

80. Wieacker, Franz, “Ursprünge und Elemente des europäischen Rechtbewusstseins,” in Europa, Erbe und Aufgabe. Internationaler Gelehrtenkongress Mainz 1955, ed. Göhring, Martin (Wiesbaden: Franz Steiner Verlag, 1956), 105–19.

81. Koschaker, Europa und das Römisches Recht, 2–4; Dawson, Christopher, The Making of Europe (London: Sheed and Ward, 1932); Carl, Schmitt and Hartung, Fritz, Das Reich und Europa (Leipzig: Koehler & Amelang, 1941).

82. Hegel, Georg W. F., Lectures on the Philosophy of World History, trans. Nisbet, H. B. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975), 173; and Miettinen, Timo, The Idea of Europe in Husserl's Phenomenology (Helsinki: Philosophical Studies, 2013), 2933.

83. The second edition of the Privatrechtsgeschichte was translated into English in 1995 by Tony Weir. Winkler, Der Kampf gegen die Rechtswissenschaft, 238–39, notes the differences on the significance of the idea of Rome and the cultural implications.

84. Wieacker, “Ursprünge und Elemente des europäischen Rechtbewusstseins”; and Wieacker, Franz, Vulgarismus und Klassizismus im Recht der Spätantike (Heidelberg: Carl Winter Universitätäsverlag, 1955), 63, shows the same idea in a nutshell.

85. Wieacker, Franz, “Foundations of European Legal Culture,” The American Journal of Comparative Law 38 (1) (1990): 1–29. This is a translation of his earlier essay titled “Voraussetzungen europäischer Rechtskultur,” presented originally in Helsinki in 1983. The essay was translated and introduced by Edgar Bodenheimer, himself an exile.

86. Laughland, John, Tainted Source: The Undemocratic Origins of the European Idea (London: Little, Brown & Company, 1997).

87. This narrative was present already in the influential Stinzing, Ruderich, Geschichte der Deutschen Rechtswissenschaft (Münich and Leipzig: Oldenbourg, 1880). On linking legal tradition and rights discourse, see Coing, Helmut, Die obersten Grundsätze des Rechts (Heidelberg: Schneider, 1947).

88. Letter by Koschaker to Dean Hero Moeller October 8, 1943, Universitätsarchiv Tübingen 601/42.

89. Duve, “European Legal History –– Global Perspectives.”

90. The central texts are Savigny, Friedrich von, Of the Vocation of Our Age for Legislation and Jurisprudence (London: Littlewood, 1984); and Grimm, Jacob, Deutsche Rechts Alterthümer (Göttingen: Dieterich'sche Buchhandeln, 1828).

91. Forner, German Intellectuals and the Challenge of Democratic Renewal, 119–20.

92. I recently inquired from a leading scholar of feminist historiography about whether her motivations were political or whether she was inspired by feminist theory. She responded that political or theoretical inspiration would have been logical, but in fact she maintained that it was simply something she felt that she should do at that time. The issues were in the air and she wanted to address them.

93. Arendt, Hannah, The Origins of Totalitarianism (London: Penguin 2017), 301.

94. Rüsen, Jörn, “Tradition: A Principle of Historical Sense–Generation and Its Logic and Effect in Historical Culture,” History and Theory 51 (2012): 4559, at 52–54.

95. Jan Assmann's term Mythomotorik (the dynamics of myth) has been used to describe the dynamic complex of narrative symbols and evocative stories that influence the understanding of the present and the future. See Assmann, Jan, “Frühe Formen politischer Mythomotorik. Fundierende, kontrapräsentische und revolutionäre Mythen,” in Revolution und Mythos, ed. Harth, Dietrich and Assmann, Jan (Frankfurt: Fischer, 1992), 3961; Assmann, Jan, “Memory, Narration, Identity: Exodus as a Political Myth,” in Literary Construction of Identity in the Ancient World, ed. Liss, Hanna and Oeming, Manfred (Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2010), 318; and Assmann, Jan, “Communicative and Cultural Memory,” in Cultural Memory Studies: An International and Interdisciplinary Handbook, ed. Erll, Astrid and Nünning, Ansgar (Berlin and New York: De Gruyter, 2008), 109–18.

He thanks the members of the research project “Reinventing the Foundations of European Legal Culture 1934–1964”—Drs. Heta Björklund, Magdalena Kmak, Tommaso Beggio, Ville Erkkilä, and Jacob Giltai—for their advice and help. The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013)/ERC grant agreement no. 313100.

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Law and History Review
  • ISSN: 0738-2480
  • EISSN: 1939-9022
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