Dr Rose Parfitt

Senior Lecturer in Law
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Dr Rose Parfitt


Dr Parfitt joined Kent Law School in April 2016. She has published widely in the fields of international law, legal history, critical theory and history of art, broadly speaking. Her first monograph, The Process of International Legal Reproduction: Historiography, Inequality, Resistance, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2019.
She received her doctorate in 2011 from SOAS (University of London). Between 2011 and 2013 was an Assistant Professor of International Law at the American University in Cairo. From 2013-2016 she was based at Melbourne Law School’s Institute for International Law and the Humanities, where her research was funded by a McKenzie Research Fellowship.
Dr Parfitt has been a member of the workshop teaching faculty at Harvard Law School’s Institute for Global Law and Policy (IGLP) since 2011, and has held visiting professorships at institutions including Melbourne Law School (Australia), Los Andes University (Colombia), Helsinki Law School (Finland), the University of Salento (Italy), Icesi (Colombia) and elsewhere. In July 2020, she has been invited to convene a seminar on social justice for SOMA Summer in Mexico City, an annual eight-week program for international artists, curators, critics, and art historians.

Research interests

Dr Parfitt’s research is focused on the development of new techniques aimed at uncovering, making sense of and challenging international law’s role in the creation and preservation of a world in which wealth, power and pleasure are distributed more and more unequally. Her work (both individual and collaborative) involves the bringing together of words, images and sounds – and of traditions dedicated to analysing words, images and sounds – in order to find more effective ways of getting at the legal past and its material consequences for the human and non-human world.
She was awarded a Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA) by the Australian Research Council in 2015, and between 2016 and 2019 led a multi-year research project entitled ‘International Law and the Legacies of Fascist Internationalism’ while on secondment to Melbourne Law School. In 2017 she established the ‘Fascism and the International’ Project – an ongoing series of counter-disciplinary international workshops aimed at developing a new, sharper set of tools with which to challenge the language and aesthetics of the twenty-first century ‘new right’.
The first of these workshops took place at the Museo de Arte Moderno in Mexico City (2017). The second, organised in collaboration with the sound art collective Liquid Architecture, the Italian Cultural Institute and Melbourne Law School’s Institute for International Law and the Humanities, took place at West Space in Melbourne (2018). The third workshop – which initiates a new project called ‘Interdisciplinarity as Resistance’ – will take place at Konstepidemin studios in Gothenburg, Sweden, in April 2020. Organised in collaboration Matilda Arvidsson and Hjalmar Falk at the University of Gothenburg, this third workshop is also supported by grants from the Socio-Legal Studies Association, Kent University’s Faculty Research Fund and the University of Gothenburg.
A new collaborative project, International law and the Challenge of Populism – with Richard Joyce (Law/Monash), Sundhya Pahuja (Law/Melbourne), Andrew Benjamin (Philosophy/Monash) and James Martel (Political Science/SFSU)- has just been selected by the Australian Research Council for one of its 2020 Discovery Project awards.
Together with Luis Eslava (KLS) and Markus Gunneflo (Lund), Dr Parfitt is the co-director of the ‘International Law and Politics’ Collaborative Research Network at the Law and Society Association (LSA), coordinating a programme of more than 45 events at the LSA’s annual meetings in the US, Mexico, Canada and elsewhere.
Her other collaborative projects include the Fascism and the International Project (see above); Countering the Rise of Authoritarianism: Law, Philosophy, Politics (with Richard Joyce and Andrew Benjamin); History, Anthropology and the Archive of International Law (HAAIL) (with Madelaine Chiam, Luis Eslava, Genevieve Painter and Charlotte Peevers); Working with Law: Critical Futures (with Tom Andrews, Sara Dehm, Jake Goldenfein, James Parker and Cait Storr); Imperial Locations (with Lauren Benton, Luis Eslava, Martti Koskenniemi, Luigi Nuzzo, Liliana Obregón, Kerry Rittich and others); and the League of Nations and the Periphery project (with Michelle Bergis-Kasthala, Michael Fakhri, Usha Natarajan and Umut Özsu)


Rose teaches undergraduate law in the areas of International Law, Public Law and International Humanitarian Law.

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