The first international student conference in legal history, „Iustoria“, was held from October 14th to 16th, 2020, with the topic “Law Codes and Women”. The initiative to organize the conference came from the Department of Legal History of the University of Belgrade Faculty of Law, with the aim of starting a beautiful tradition of holding such conferences annually, all to create space and opportunities for domestic and foreign students to express their love and interest in legal history. For the same reason, the first student journal for legal history, “Vesnik pravne istorije / Herald of Legal History”, was recently launched, and it will, among others, publish the papers presented at the conference. The conference was originally planned to be held live in March, on the anniversary of the passing of the Serbian Civil Code of 1844, but despite the best wishes of the organizers, the epidemiological situation, unfortunately, did not allow it, so the conference not only had to be postponed for October, but was then also fully transferred to the Cisco Webex online platform.
The conference was opened with a welcome address by Prof. Dr Zoran Mirković, Dean of the University of Belgrade Faculty of Law, Prof. Dr Milena Polojac, Head of the Department of Legal History and Professor of Roman Law, and Prof. Dr Dragica Vujadinović, Professor of Gender Studies and Legal and Political Theories.
All three days of the conference began with keynote lectures by professors: on the first day, the opening lecture was given by Prof. Dr Elisabeth Holzleithner from the University of Vienna Faculty of Law, on the topic “Women’s Rights as Human Rights – Historical Roots and Current Challenges”. On the second day, the participants were addressed by Prof. Dr Sima Avramović with the topic “Can a daughter prolong her family?”, and on the third day Prof. Dr Marion Röwekamp, Humboldt Professor at the College of Mexico, presented a lecture entitled “Law Codes and Communities of Female Protest in European History, 1794-1970s”.
The sessions were divided into Serbian and English, and students from countries all over the world participated, covering the legal systems from the East to the West and from Antiquity to modern times. The first day of the conference was dedicated to Antiquity and the position of women in the Middle and Far East, as well as in ancient Rome and Greece. The second day focused on the position of women in the Middle Ages, and then in the Modern Age, where the entire session was dedicated to the law codes of Central and Eastern Europe. The third day of the conference was entirely dedicated to the Modern Age and the position of women in civil law, public law and the economy. All sessions were followed by lively discussion.
The conference was closed by the head of the organizing committee, Ass. Prof. Dr Nina Kršljanin, with congratulations and warm salutations to the participants and encouragement to apply for the conference next year, when the topic will be ” Law and Religion”.
Footage from the conference will soon be available on the Faculty YouTube channel.