Emily Whewell speaks about Havilland de Sausmarez (1861-1941) and colonial legal biography to BBC Radio Guernsey and Guernsey Press

15. November 2019

Emily Whewell has recently appeared on BBC Radio Guernsey and Guernsey Press to discuss her research on Havilland de Sausmarez. De Sausmarez was an illustrious judge with an enigmatic character. He born in Guernsey in 1861 to a family embedded within the community there. He held a number of judicial appointments, initially in England but moved thereafter to British courts in semi-colonial jurisdictions, namely Zanzibar, the Ottoman Empire, and Shanghai. He returned to Guernsey in 1920 and lived there until he died in 1941. Emily’s scholarship uses legal biography to demonstrate the ways in which legal professionals – and their ideas - moved around the world. The early experiences, the travel and geographical mobility of these individuals were important in shaping their legal ideas and understanding of  diverse communities - but these events are often obscured from view. As well as shedding some much needed light on the circulation of individuals and law, it also notes the varied career paths that lawyers outside of England took. This includes a thought provoking exploration of the identity and cultural allegiances of lawyers in imperial and colonial contexts. More about Emily’s research can be found in her interview on Oscar Pearson’s show on BBC Radio Guernsey (starting at 1:23:45). The coverage in the pages of the Guernsey Press can be found in the images here.

Emily is at the forefront of the legal biography initiatives which are taking place at the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History. She is organising a workshop on Colonial Legal Biography which will be held at the Institute on April 27-28th 2020.

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