Law in War: Phenomenological Perspectives


Law in War

Phenomenological Perspectives: Online Workshop

February 10th, 14-17h CET

What is the experience of law in war? Is it the absence, suspension, or silence of law in face of unknown violence and a constant state of exception? Or does law remain an experience of everydayness in human interaction and a promise against war? In legal theory, the relation between law and war is a long-standing topic, as is the normativity of law, which asserts its own domain of “ought” against a domain of “being.” But if we consider law “not as an object of our knowledge or technical domination, but as something that happens to us in the world” (Satokhina), i.e., from a phenomenological point of view, the intertwined dimensions of validity and facticity manifest themselves in the experience and existence of human beings who live together, in peace and war.

The aim of the workshop is to describe, conceptualize, and analyze the structure and essence of these experiences in their “corporeal, liminal, concretely situated” (Stovba) and transcendent dimensions, between “world and worldlessness, infinity and totality, law and lawlessness” (Satokhina) and to ask how, from this phenomenological perspective, law relates to war.

The workshop is structured around two initial texts written by Ukrainian philosophers and phenomenologists of law, Nataliia Satokhina and Oleksiy Stovba. Both will present a short version of their texts to which the panelists will then reply with short inputs (10-15 mins), which is followed by panel discussion and open discussion. Both contributions and discussions aim to focus on how phenomenological tools, concepts and methods can help us up approach and better understand the phenomenon of law in war.


  • Nathalie Barbosa de la Cadena (Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora, Brazil)
  • Nicolas De Warren (Penn State University, US)
  • Saulius Geniusas (Chinese University of Hong Kong, China)
  • Sophie Loidolt (TU Darmstadt, Germany)
  • Nataliia Satokhina (Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University, Kharkiv, Ukraine)
  • Tatiana Shchyttsova (European Humanities University, Vilnius)
  • Michael Staudigl (University of Vienna, Austria)
  • Oleksiy Stovba (National Aerospace University, Kharkiv Aviation Institute, Ukraine)


  • 14.00-14.05: Welcome and Opening (Sophie Loidolt)
  • Opening statements:
    14.05-14.20: Nataliia Satokhina: “Phenomenology of Peace and War: Experience of
    Law and Experience of Lawlessness”
    14.20-14.35: Oleksiy Stovba: “Is Law Possible during the War? Specificity of the
    Corporal Experience”
  • Responses from the panel and discussion I:
    Nathalie Barbosa de la Cadena: “Phenomenology and Human Rights”
    Nicolas De Warren
    Saulius Geniusas

    *** Break 15.45 – 15.55 ***

  • Responses from the panel and discussion II:
    Sophie Loidolt
    Tatiana Shchyttsova
    Michael Staudigl

Online Workshop on Zoom
The workshop is open to all. Please register at: to obtain the Zoom-link and the texts.