William E. Conklin

Brief Bio

Recently elected to the Royal Society of Canada, William received his PhD in Social and Political Thought from York University Canada and graduate degrees in Law from Columbia University and in International Relations from the London School of Economics.

Bill’s most recent books are the well-received Statelessness: the enigma of an international community (Oxford: Hart, 2015), Le savoir oublié de l’expérience des lois (trans. Basil Kingstone, Québec: Laval U Pr, 2011) and Hegel’s Laws: the legitimacy of a modern legal order (2008) with Stanford University Press. His efforts have seen the publication of 7 books, over 60 peer-reviewed articles, and 8 co-edited volumes including the first two volumes of the Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice. He has presented 2-4 papers at International Conferences each year over many years. He has created 18 new courses for law students and has been active in the PhD, MA and LlM programs at Windsor U.



History of Legal Thought,


Constitutional Legal Theory,

Nomadic Peoples,


Bill’s most recent articles are

- “Legal Time” in Canadian J Jurisprudence and Law 31 (2018): 281-322;

- “Derrida’s Kafka and the Imagined Boundary of Legal Knowledge” in Law, Culture and the Humanities (2016): 1-27.


- “Hegel and a Third Theory of Law” in Owl of Minerva 48 (2016-17): 57-74;

- “Which takes Precedence: Collective Rights or Culture?” in Cultural Rights: an anthology, ed by Almed Momeni-Rad, Arian Petoft & Alireza Sayadmansom (Tehran Iran: Iranian Cultural Services Society, 2015), 115-152;   

-“Human Rights and the Forgotten Acts of Meaning in the Social Conventions of Conceptual Jurisprudence” in Metodo: International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy 2 (2014): 169-199;

-“The Legal Culture of European Civilization: Hegel and the Indigenous Americans” in Europe in its own Eyes, Europe in the Eyes of the Other, ed by David B MacDonald and Mary-Michelle De Coste (Waterloo: University of Waterloo Press, 2014), 55-79;

- “‘The Preface’, Hegel’s Legal Philosophy, and the Critics of His Time” in Jonathan Lavery et al, Ideas under Fire (Madison: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2017 [2013]), 161-90;

- “Derrida’s Territorial Knowledge of Justice” in Ruth Buchanan et al, Reading Modern Law (London: Routledge, 2012), 102-29;

- “The Peremptory Norms of the International Community” in European J Int’l L 23 (2012), 837-61;

- “The Peremptory Norms of the International Community: A Rejoinder to Alexander Orakhelashvilli” in European J Int’l L. European J Int’l L 23 (2012), 869-72;

- “The Exclusionary Character of the Early Modern International Community” in Nordic J Int’l L 81 (2012) 133-173;

- “The Ghosts of Cemetery Road: two forgotten indigenous women and the crisis of analytical jurisprudence” in Australian Feminist L Journal (2011): 3-21;

- “The Myth of Primordialism in Cicero’s Theory of Jus Gentium” in the Leiden Journal of International Law (2010): 479-506;

- “Statelessness and Bernhard Waldenfels’ Phenomenology of the Alien” in British J Phenomenology 38 (2007): 280-96;

- “A Phenomenological Theory of the Human Rights of the Alien” in Ethical Perspectives 13 (2006): 245-301;

- “Lon Fuller’s Phenomenology of Language” in International J for Semiotics of Law” 19 (2006): 93-125.

Bill has been a Visiting Professor at the University of London (Birkbeck College) and has taught at the Universities of Ottawa, Toronto, York, Carleton and Ryerson. He has been a Visiting Fellow/Scholar at the Ethics Centre, University of Toronto; Lauterpacht Centre for International Law (Cambridge University); Clare Hall College (Cambridge); the Northrop Frye Centre for the Humanities (Victoria College, University of Toronto); Massey College (Toronto); Stanford University; and the University of California (Berkeley). Bill is a Life Member of Clare Hall College, Cambridge University.