Your Basket is currently empty

Your Bookshelf is empty!

Your Basket is currently empty


Clamouring for Legal Protection

What the Great Books Teach Us About People Fleeing from Persecution

By: Robert F Barsky
Media of Clamouring for Legal Protection
See larger image
Published: 17-06-2021
Format: PDF eBook (?)
Edition: 1st
Extent: 336
ISBN: 9781509943173
Imprint: Hart Publishing
RRP: £67.50
Online price : £54.00
Save £13.50 (20%)

This book is also available in other formats: View formats

Please note that ebooks are subject to tax and the final price may vary depending on your country of residence.

Delivery & Returns

Tell others about this product

Loren Epson

About Clamouring for Legal Protection

In this novel approach to law and literature, Robert Barsky delves into the canon of so-called Great Books, and discovers that many beloved characters therein encounter obstacles similar to those faced by contemporary refugees and undocumented persons.

The struggles of Odysseus, Moses, Aeneas, Dante, Satan, Dracula and Alice in Wonderland, among many others, provide surprising insights into current discussions about those who have left untenable situations in their home countries in search of legal protection.

Law students, lawyers, social scientists, literary scholars and general readers who are interested in learning about international refugee law and immigration regulations in home and host countries will find herein a plethora of details about border crossings, including those undertaken to flee pandemics, civil unrest, racism, intolerance, war, forced marriage, or limited opportunities in their home countries.

Table Of Contents

Introduction: Opening Up the Great Books
I. Canons, Great Books and Classics
II. 'Popular' Culture
III. From Cultural Reflection to Legal Protection
IV. Why Fiction? What About the Real World?
V. From Escapism to Engagement
VI. From Empathy to Revelation

1. Spreading Disease, or Inoculating Us from Intolerance?
I. Pandemics in Literature and Culture
A. The Arc of Disease, Suffering and Death
II. The Foreignness of Diseases
III. The Rhetoric of Blame
A. From Vulnerable to Unwanted and Diseased
IV. The Plague
V. From Symptoms to Panic
VI. Creating Empathy
VII. Limbo and the Will to Move Around
VIII. From Quarantines to Quarrels to Empathy?
IX. Art in the Time of Cholera
X. Crossing the Border into Obscenity
XI. Predicting Post-Pandemic Politics

2. Following Pathways, Networks and Guides
I. The Cessation Clause
II. Following Intermediaries in Religious Texts
III. Human Smugglers
IV. Language Issues and Displacement
V. Pursuing the Land of Milk and Honey
VI. Divine Intermediaries and Shift s to Immigration Policy
VII. Guides from Behind the Veil
VIII. Intermediaries to Eden
IX. From Freedom Fighter to Refugee
X. From Civil War to Hell
XI. A Reluctant Follower
XII. Fleeing with Loved Ones
XIII. The Purposeless Quest
XIV. Constantly on the Road
XV. The Search for Treasure
XVI. The Promised Land

3. Opening Doors and Scaling Walls
I. From Protection to Integration
II. From Victim to Slave
III. Supplicating Before the Gatekeeping King
IV. Consulting Constituents on Border Policy
V. Opening the Right Doors
VI. Doors, Doorways and the People Hidden Behind Them
VII. Before the Law
VIII. Ill-Advised Strategies for Opening Doors
IX. Real-World Gatekeeping
X. Rights at the Border
XI. Behind Closed Doors
XII. Doors Towards Metaphysical Voyages

4. Confronting Inhospitable Spaces and Hostile Hosts
I. Storms, Floods and the Purging of Unwanted Civilisations
II. The Romantic Refugee
III. Mary and Percy Shelley: Feminist and Atheist
IV. Refugees in a Time of Climate Change
A. Mary Shelley, Victor Frankenstein and His Monster: Climate Refugees
B. Percy Shelley's Perspective on Climate and Geomorphology
C. Lord Byron: Catastrophism, Climate Change and Ensuing Darkness
V. From Creation of the Earth to Apocalypse
VI. Being Misled into the Wrong Paradise
VII. Finding Revelation Instead of Refuge
VIII. From Persecution to Punishment
IX. Chance Encounters
X. Finding Hell
XI. Transformation into Darkness

5. Encounters with Aliens, Monsters and Terrorists
I. Monsters in the Great Tradition
II. Insidious Monsters in the (Real) World
III. First Encounters
IV. The Monstrous Unfamiliar
V. A Refugee Amongst Refugees
VI. Confronting Your Neighbour: The Monster
VII. Identifying the Monsters, then Living with Them
Conclusion: From Persecution to Wonderland


Clamouring for Legal Protection provides a humanistic lens through which to view the complex realms of refugee law and border studies. By showing how well-known characters from canonical works face obstacles that resemble those facing contemporary refugees, Barsky is able to create empathy for people who are often denigrated or shunned as 'outsiders', rather than welcomed as inspiring contributors to host societies.” –  Deborah Anker, Clinical Professor of Law and Founder of the Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program, Harvard Law School, USA

“With stunning erudition, Barsky follows the trajectory of vulnerable migrants (asylum seekers, temporary migrant workers, undocumented migrants…) and combines the 'Great Books' of world literature with contemporary legal tenets to explore the complexity of their predicament, demonstrating that, throughout history, many individuals follow the ancient tradition of hospitality and protect migrants, but, swayed by populist identity politics, many societies blame migrants for their ills, foster hostile environments and show 'mountainish inhumanity'.” –  François Crépeau, Professor of Public International Law, McGill University, Canada

“Published on the 70th anniversary of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, Clamouring for Legal Protection reminds us that escape from untenable situations and the search for asylum are not only rooted throughout the course of human history but also embedded in the iconic characters and universal themes of the great literary works that reflect our common humanity.” –  Bill Frelick, Director, Refugee and Migrant Rights Division, Human Rights Watch, USA

Bookmark and Share