Julie Billaud

Former Staff

C.V. | Publications | Research Projects

Research Interests
Legal anthropology, anthropology of morality, Islam, human rights, gender.

Research Area(s)
Afghanistan, Europe (especially the UK), the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Allegra Lab: Anthropology, Law, Art & World


Julie received a B.A (Licence) in Modern Literature from La Nouvelle Sorbonne. She graduated from the Institute of Political Studies in Paris and received an MSc in Social Sciences Research Methods from the University of Sussex. In May 2010, she completed a European DPhil in Social Anthropology and Law from Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and the University of Sussex (Brighton). Her doctoral thesis seeks to problematize the new visibility acquired by women in 'post-war/reconstruction' Afghanistan.

In 2010, she assisted Prof. Jane Cowan in her ethnographic study of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a new mechanism of human rights monitoring within the (reformed) UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

She is now redirecting her research interests towards Islam in Europe, looking at the contemporary transformations of the European public sphere through its encounter with Islamic difference. Her recent work investigates everyday uses and practices of Islamic law in Britain. In 2011-2012, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow within the ‘Legal Cultures’ (Rechtskulturen) program of Humboldt University. In 2009-2010, she was part of Prof. Göle’s ERC project: “Islam in the making of the European Public Sphere”.

Why Law & Anthropology?

"Fieldwork I conducted in Afghanistan, at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva and in British Shari'ah Councils made me realise that law and justice do not always coincide. Oftentimes even, the law can foster sentiments of injustice. In my view, anthropology is the discipline that is most apt to unpack these complexities and provide critical insight into the lived experiences and practices of the law."


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