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Department II

The research in department II (Thomas Duve) primarily deals with legal history in the early Modern and Modern period. Of particular interest is the analysis of religiously shaped normativity – Canon law, Moral theology – as part of a multi-normative setting in socially and culturally complex societies. One of our regional focuses involves Ibero-America as an imperial space. Additional research fields include the history of criminal law and the shifts in regulatory and decision-making systems during the Modern Period. Particular importance is placed upon enriching legal historical work by means of comparative and global historical perspectives and to develop it even further via an intensive dialogue with the legal scholarship.

We are involved in a number of institutional co-operations, such as with “Academy of Sciences and Literature in Mainz”, with the research project focusing on the School of Salamanca (since 2013) as well as with the SFB 1095 “Discourses of Weakness and Resource Regimes” located at the Goethe University with a sub-project entitled “Knowledge of the pragmatici” (since 2015). Within the framework of the institute’s participation in the Frankfurt Excellence Cluster “The Formation of Normative Orders”, three research projects are currently being carried out involving multi-normativity, transnational regimes of criminal law and structures of legitimation of regulatory systems (since 2012). As part of an interdisciplinary co-operation including 3 Max Planck Institutes in Germany and Italy as well as the University of Chicago, we are looking at the legal historical aspects of the Convivencia in the medieval and early Modern Iberian world (since 2015). Furthermore, we have a series of co-operative relationships with domestically situated and international colleagues and research institutions that are project-related or connected to individual researchers.


Research Projects