Author Archives: Shane Chalmers

About Shane Chalmers

Shane Chalmers is currently a teaching fellow at Melbourne Law School as well as a visiting fellow in the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet) at the Australian National University, where he earned his doctorate in 2016. His dissertation, "Liberia and the Rule of Law,'' combined a historical study of the colonial origins and making of Liberia with an empirical study of the everyday life of law in Liberia and law's role in remaking the nation-state after war.

The Beginning of Human Rights: The Ritual of the Preamble to Law

Abstract: There is something distinctly ritualistic about the Preamble in international human rights instruments: in its repetitiveness both within and across legal instruments; in its logical ordering of the universe, connecting what has gone before (‘whereas’: human nature, crisis, recognition) with what must follow (‘therefore’: the law, this law); in its very style and representation. This suggests that the Preamble is more than a literally useful passage at the start of the text for lawyers to get to the law, but also something like a Continue reading → Continue reading →