Press Release: Notre Dame Law School celebrates Professor Christian Burset’s new book

The Notre Dame Law School community celebrated Professor Christian Burset‘s new book, “An Empire of Laws: Legal Pluralism in British Colonial Policy,” at a reception on Wednesday, Oct. 4 in Eck Commons.

At the event, Patrick Griffin, the Madden-Hennebry Family Professor and director of the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies, delivered opening remarks to an audience of over 50 faculty, staff, and students.

Notre Dame Law School Dean G. Marcus Cole said, “I’m delighted to recognize Professor Burset’s recent book, which masterfully reveals the intricate ways in which the British Empire used varying approaches to law and legal institutions in order to execute its colonial strategy around the world.”

ND Law Professor Christian Burset’s new book: “An Empire of Laws: Legal Pluralism in British Colonial Policy.”

Burset’s book is a compelling reexamination of how Britain used law to influence its empire. This book is the first comprehensive overview of law as a policy instrument in the 18th-century British Empire. It offers an imaginative and fresh perspective of the relationship between tolerance and empire.

“My book challenges the received story by offering a new account of Britain’s imperial legal policy in the 18th century. I argue that the shape of Britain’s imperial law—and of colonial institutions more generally—was often a deliberate policy choice,” said Burset.

Burset teaches civil procedure, conflicts of law, the legal history, and a seminar on the rule of law. His research focuses on the history of English and American legal institutions, including their connection to economic change, their connection to arbitration, and the place of specialized courts in the Anglo-American legal tradition.

His previous publications include the 2021 article “Advisory Opinions and the Problem of Legal Authority.”

Read more about the book here