Prof. Dr. Julia Eckert


031 631 8963
Postal Address
Lerchenweg 36, 3012 Bern
Consultation Hour
Wednesday 1 to 3 pm during the semester. Please sign up on the list at the office door or make an appointment by e-mail.


Julia Eckert is Professor for Political Anthropology at the University of Bern, Switzerland. She specializes in legal anthropology, the anthropology of the modern state, conflict theory, and social movements. Her current research interests are the transnationalisation of legal norms; the anthropology of crime and punishment; changing notions of responsibility and liability; security and citizenship. She has conducted research on everyday conflicts over norms of justice, citizenship and authority with a project on the police in Mumbai, India. Among her publications on this research are “The Trimurti of the State” in: Sociologus 2005; “From Subject to Citizen: Legalism from below and the Homogenisation of the Legal Sphere” in: Journal of Legal Pluralism 2006. Her work on a Hindu-nationalist movement in India resulted in her book The Charisma of Direct Action (Oxford University Press, 2003) and “Urban governance and emergent forms of legal pluralism in Mumbai” in: Journal of Legal Pluralism 2004. Other than India, she conducted research in Uzbekistan and Afghanistan. She was researcher at the German Institute for international pedagogical research, Frankfurt am Main, and lecturer at the Humboldt University, Berlin and the Free University of Berlin from where she holds a PhD. As head of the research group ‘Law against the State’ at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle/Saale, Germany she examined the juridification of protest and the globalisation of transnational legal norms. The results of this project have been published as Law against the State: Ethnographic Forays into Law’s Transformations (with Z.O. Biner, Ch. Strümpell and B. Donahoe) with with Cambridge University Press 2012.

Co-editor of Anthropological Theory

Research Fields

  • Legal anthropology
  • conflict theory
  • the anthropology of the modern state
  • social movements

Current Research Themes

  • The transnationalisation of legal norms
  • the anthropology of crime and punishment
  • changing notions of responsibility and liability
  • norms of justice, notions of equality
  • democracy
  • security
  • citizenship
Publications of Prof. Dr. Julia Eckert

Spring semester 2018

Exercise: Democracy?

Exercise: Research course I

Master Colloquia

PhD Colloquia

Autumn semester 2017

Seminar: Freedom, Equality, Solidarity III: Solidarity

Lecture: Introduction to Anthropology of Transnationalsm and the State

Master colloquia

PhD Colloquia