Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Full circle

Cycling home from my third Christmas dinner in college (I have been here a frighteningly long time now) a strange thought struck me.

When I first found out I would be coming to Cambridge for my Masters, a friend in the Federal Court loaned me her copy of Phillip Allott's "Eunomia" to read. It's a dense and difficult book, but quite inspiring in its depiction of what international law could be, not what it is. (His "Health of Nations", while still tricky, is a much easier read).

I still recall the sense of wonder it evoked, the dizzyingly alternative perspective on a subject I thought I knew, as I read in snatches on a late-winter tram in Melbourne traveling to and from the Court.

Despite never seeing myself as a legal theorist, I took Professor Allott's History and Theory of International Law course; an experience that more than anything else inspired me to stay on for the PhD.

And now, two years later, tomorrow night I am taking the colleague who leant me the book (who has also landed in Cambridge) to a discussion group and supper hosted by Professor Allott.

Funny how things sometimes come full circle.

No comments: