Julie Stone Peters

Julie Stone Peters

Research Interests


BA Yale, PhD Princeton, JD Columbia

Julie Stone Peters is the H. Gordon Garbedian Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia, an Affiliated Faculty Member at Columbia Law School, and a Global Professorial Fellow at Queen Mary University School of Law in London. A scholar of law and humanities and media history, she studies performance, film, digital, and legal cultures across the longue durée.

Her most recent book is Law as Performance: Theatricality, Spectatorship, and the Making of Law in Ancient, Medieval, and Early Modern Europe (Oxford UP, 2022) (longlisted for the Media Ecologies Association Book Award and winner of an honorable mention from the Medieval and Renaissance Drama Society). Previous scholarly publications include Theatre of the Book: Print, Text, and Performance in Europe 1480-1880 (Oxford UP, 2000) (winner of the ACLA’s Harry Levin Prize, English Association’s Beatrice White Award, and an honorable mention from ASTR for the best book in theatre history), Women’s Rights, Human Rights: International Feminist Perspectives (co-edited, Routledge, 1995), and Congreve, the Drama, and the Printed Word (Stanford UP, 1990). Her more public-facing essays have appeared in the London Review of BooksNew York Times Book Review, SlatePublic BooksChronicle of Higher Education, Village Voice, and elsewhere.

At Columbia, she spearheaded the creation of the graduate certificate and undergraduate major in Human Rights, and currently serves as Director of Academic Careers Advising for PhD Students and Co-Chair of the Theatre and Performance Ph.D. Program. She has taught at Harvard, Stanford, and the Metropolitan Detention Center (Brooklyn). She is co-editor of the Cambridge Elements in Legal Humanities book series, and the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, Fulbright Foundation, American Philosophical Society, American Council of Learned Societies, Humboldt Foundation, and elsewhere.

She has a new book forthcoming from Cambridge University Press: Staging Witchcraft Before the Law: Skepticism, Performance as Proof, and Law as Magic in Early Modern Witch Trials. She is currently working on a collaborative project called “Fragments for a History of the Legal Body” and two books tentatively titled The Video and the Law and The War of the Cameras.

Law as Performance: Theatricality, Spectatorship, and the Making of Law in Ancient, Medieval, and Early Modern Europe (Oxford University Press, 2022).

Mapping Law and Performance: Reflections on the Dilemmas of an Interdisciplinary Conjunction: https://www-oxfordhandbooks-com.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/view/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190695620.001.0001/oxfordhb-9780190695620-e-42

A Short History of Scaffold Tragedy c. 1650-1800: How a Classic Trope Salvaged the Spectacle of Punishment in the Age of Sympathy

Staging the Last Judgment in the Trial of Charles I: https://doi.org/10.1525/rep.2018.143.1.1

Penitentiary Performances: Spectators, Affecting Scenes, and Terrible Apparitions in the Nineteenth-Century Model Prison" https://www-jstor-org.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/stable/j.ctv346v7v.5?refreqid=excelsior%3Aa8b84a309f950e2272a603224b5fcfde&seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents.

Law as Performance: Historical Interpretation, Objects, Lexicons, and Other Methodological Problems: https://oxford-universitypressscholarship-com.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190456368.001.0001/acprof-9780190456368-chapter-12

Theatrocracy Unwired: Legal Performance in the Modern Mediasphere: https://www-tandfonline-com.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/doi/full/10.1080/1535685X.2014.888200

Drama, Primitive Ritual, Ethnographic Spectacle: Genealogies of World Performance (ca. 1890-1910): https://read.dukeupress.edu/modern-language-quarterly/article-abstract/70/1/67/19623/Drama-Primitive-Ritual-Ethnographic-Spectacle?redirectedFrom=fulltext

Legal Performance Good and Bad: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1743872108091473

Jane Harrison and the Savage Dionysus: Archaeological Voyages, Ritual Origins, Anthropology, and the Modern Theatre: https://muse.jhu.edu/article/242465

Performing Obscene Modernism: Theatrical Censorship and the Making of Modern Drama: https://link-springer-com.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/chapter/10.1057%2F9780230289086_12

Theatricality, Legalism, and the Scenography of Suffering in the Trial of Warren Hastings and Richard Brinsley Sheridan’s Pizarro: https://www-jstor-org.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/stable/10.1525/lal.2006.18.1.15?seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents

A ‘Bridge over Chaos’: De Jure Belli, Paradise Lost, Terror, Sovereignty, Globalism, and the Modern Law of Nations: https://www-jstor-org.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/stable/4122558?seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents

‘Literature,’ the ‘Rights of Man,’ and Narratives of Atrocity: Historical Backgrounds to the Culture of Testimony: https://digitalcommons.law.yale.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1304&context=yjlh

Law, Literature, and the Vanishing Real: On the Future of an Interdisciplinary Illusion: https://www-jstor-org.ezproxy.cul.columbia.edu/stable/25486170?seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents

Theatre of the Book 1480-1880 Print, Text and Performance in Europe, Julie Peters


Women’s Rights, Human Rights: International Feminist Perspectives, Ed. Julie Peters and Andrea Wolper