The utopia of Rojava

A new world for stateless people

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.35295/osls.iisl/0000-0000-0000-1269

Keywords:

utopia, legal change, participatory art, democracy, revolution

Abstract

This article investigates how participatory art can contribute to legal change. As a case study, it discusses Jonas Staal’s project of New World Summit in Rojava, a (so far still) autonomous region in North and East Syria. It offers an interesting case, since it invites the law to include what it has excluded so far. To begin with, it is clarified how change is conceived within legal systems based on the rule of law. Although law resists radical change, it is involved in a constant process of adaptation to its environment. Subsequently, Staal’s project of New World Summit is discussed from a utopian perspective. Its apparent impossibility is what makes is so valuable for law and its development. By erecting a parliament for Rojava, it presents a picture of how the international order could look like when things were different. It basically is an exercise in “utopian world-making”.

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Author Biography

Bart van Klink, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Prof. Dr. B.M.J. (Bart) van Klink

Professor of Legal Methodology 

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Faculty of Law

Department of Legal Theory and Legal History

De Boelelaan 1105

1081 HV Amsterdam

The Netherlands

eMail: b.van.klink@vu.nl

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Published

30-03-2022 — Updated on 01-08-2022

How to Cite

van Klink, B. (2022) “The utopia of Rojava: A new world for stateless people”, Oñati Socio-Legal Series, 12(4), pp. 822–842. doi: 10.35295/osls.iisl/0000-0000-0000-1269.