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4th Max Planck Master Class in International Law / Film by Miriam Aziz

The 4th annual Master Class in International Law has been filmed by Miriam Aziz - a documentary of legal anthropology, and more:

"I was commissioned to film the 4th annual Master Class in International Law held by the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg in 2015. The project fused my passion for art and ideas about the law underwritten by observing movement and, in this case, the choreography of global academic cultures. We express ourselves through words and movement, in short we embody our cognition and its mediation thereof. Whereas language games and the rules of engagement in cultures may be similar, they are never the same. Even within one academic culture, a variety of style and form exist. I spent a month prior to filming reading the main texts which were used as the masterclass readings which provided a number of narratives that would inform the editorial process. Notwithstanding, performance in the class room is unpredictable, as a masterclass in a group which was made up of international scholars, many of whom are at the beginning of their academic careers; they have not yet mastered their technique and so are open to experimentation. This contributed to providing a structure for dialogue which was not only dynamic but was also infused with the need to pay attention and listen which in turn inspired all participants in the room, at all stages of their career. The narrative arc of the editorial process was informed by Emmanuelle Tourme Jouannet's scholarship as well as the questions of the scholars and the presentation of their own research in an exchange which, as the days went by, became more lively as the participants grew more confident; their posture, tone of voice and diction, the rising tension of the body as it prepares its host to ask a question or make a comment, together with gazes out of the window or at mobile phones, visual expressions of alliance, understanding, incomprehension, concentration, detachment, exhaustion, boredom, engagement and so on, contributed to not only what might be termed as a documentary of legal anthropology but also a masterclass as performance of the art of the legal academy."

Miriam Aziz, September 16, 2015.