Surabhi Ranganathan - Unmaking the Ocean
Unmaking the Ocean examined the co-production of international law and the ocean from 1945 to now. Both the ocean and international law were radically transformed in this period. By tracing their co-constitution, we can extend the history of international law into new areas: ocean depths and bottoms, global commons, marine infrastructures, and techno-utopian imaginaries; throw new light on current preoccupations of the history of international law: statehood and territory, decolonization and the new international economic order, the Cold War, race and inequality, and the emergence of new legal forms and institutions; and unpick the ways in which particular definitions, and framings of the ocean - that, inter alia, account for its perilous state today - have become universalised through an oceanic ‘constitution’, the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
This seminar took place on Wednesday 23 September 2020.