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Reflection: Eggshell Skull by Bri Lee

Last semester I was teaching law to creative industries grad students (“How not to get sued: the basics”). We, of course, covered defamation and looked at the cases that were running in Australia right now on that front, and it got me thinking about the thesis I started developing over the summer regarding judgement writing as a form of biographical writing (I’ll bore you with it over wine if you really want me to). I think this is a significant project, as it locates judgements as a form of performative utterance that have a material effect, insofar as they determine what did or did not (or can or cannot, or will or will not) happen to the bodies of parties to a case, but it also reveals the instability of that utterance by revealing its position as a hybrid genre (both utterance and biography). There’s a whole bunch of ethical and legal issues that I think arise from this destabilisation, but let’s leave overthrowing the system to the side for the moment. Toward the end of the semester I went to a talk by Bri Lee as she launched her book, Eggshell Skull. You can read about that here. Point is, I finally finished reading the book.

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