Books, Books, Books Sydney Law School

Books, Books, Books Sydney Law School

Podcast highlighting the latest research at Sydney Law School
Books, Books, Books Sydney Law School is a podcast series showcasing the latest, published research of our academics.

Hosted by alumna, Nicole Abadee, Books Books Books Sydney Law School is an exciting podcast series that delves into the latest research by our academics.

The podcast is a collection of chats between Nicole and Sydney Law School's acclaimed legal educators about their latest books, tying in current global issues. 

The podcast will canvas areas of law such as religious liberty, criminal responsibility, commercial disputes, competition law, sharia processes and international humanitarian law. 

This podcast series is a collaboration between Sydney Law School and alumna, Nicole Abadee.

About the podcast host, Nicole Abadee

Nicole Abadee

Sydney Law School alumna, Nicole Abadee

Nicole (LLB First Class Hons '91) had a 20 year career in law, including 10 years at the New South Wales Bar and 5 years teaching International Law and International Use of Armed Force at Sydney Law School, before she pivoted her career into the book industry.

Nicole then worked as a senior editor at Penguin Books before transitioning into a freelance career, starting as the Books Writer for the Australian Financial Review Magazine.

Today, Nicole is the Books Writer for Good Weekend Magazine, and she appears regularly at writers’ festivals and other literary events interviewing writers about their work. In 2021 and 2022 she was a judge for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, for the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction.

In 2020, Nicole started her successful literary podcast, Books, Books, Books, in which she interviews top Australian and international writers such as Hilary Mantel, Helen Garner and Hugh Mackay about their latest books. 


Episode 7: Professor Gerry Simpson

Professor Gerry Simpson’s aim in his intriguing and highly original new book, “The Sentimental Life of International Law”, is “to speak international law” – not to describe it. In this wide-ranging conversation he draws on his extensive knowledge of literature, language, psychology, philosophy and history as he considers what international lawyers are,  how they strike a balance between dryness and excessive sentimentality and the bathetic nature of international criminal law and the arguments for and against war crimes trials – and alternatives to them. Finally, he asks whether international law is an appropriate way to think about and change the world.

Episode 6 - Associate Professor Ghena Krayem

Associate Professor Ghena Krayem provides deep insights into her latest book, Understanding Sharia Processes – Women’s Experience of Family Disputes, explaining the difference between a religious and a civil law divorce and why an Islamic woman might want both, the different types of religious divorce, and the process for obtaining a religious divorce, considering recent improvements to make the process more female-friendly and suggesting further reforms.

Episode 5 - Professor Yane Svetiev

Professor Svetiev provides an up-to-date account of the evolution of competition law enforcement in the European Union, arguing that recent developments may be explained by a model of experimentalist governance based on learning from difference and learning from experience. He considers the extent to which an experimentalist governance model is either feasible or desirable, with detailed reference to recent cases and developments.

4 - Dr Stacie Strong

In this week’s episode, Nicole speaks with Dr Stacie Strong, Associate Professor, about her recent book, Legal Reasoning Across Commercial Disputes – Comparing Judicial and Arbitral Analyses¸ in which she considers the following three issues:

  1. Is legal reasoning in the judicial setting different from legal reasoning in the setting of commercial arbitration?

  2. Is legal reasoning in the context of international commercial arbitration different from that used in domestic commercial arbitration?

  3. Does legal reasoning in the commercial context differ between countries with a common law system and those with a civil law system?

Dr Strong conducted an extensive survey of judges and arbitrators, as well as interviews and an analysis of judicial decisions and arbitral awards, and arrived at some interesting and at times surprising results.

3 - Teela Reid

“I am first and foremost a First Nations woman. I am that before I am a lawyer”.

In this wide-ranging conversation with Teela Reid, Sydney Law School’s first First Nations Lawyer in Residence, she discusses her remarkable career as lawyer, activist and storyteller – the life-changing decision to move from teaching to law,  her determination to make life better for the next generation of First Nations kids, her involvement in the Regional  Dialogues which led to the Uluru Statement From the Heart and her tireless advocacy for the First Nations Voice to Parliament, which she sees as the beginning of a crucial reckoning between Black and white Australia. She also talks about the need for non-Indigenous Australians to show up and to do the work.

A fascinating insight into one of the thought leaders of her generation, who is determined to use her role at the Law School to “make sure we continue to create space for other First Nations students and lawyers”.

2 - Professor Arlie Loughnan

Self, Others and the State – Relations of Criminal Responsibility

In her latest book, “Self, Others and the State – Relations of Criminal Responsibility”, Professor Arlie Loughnan reassesses the rise to prominence of criminal responsibility within the Australian criminal law in the twentieth century and reconsiders its significance within the criminal law. In this episode Nicole and Professor Loughnan discuss the central thesis of her book – that criminal responsibility is significant because of the unique role it plays in organising key sets of relations – between individuals, other and the state – as relations of responsibility. To illustrate her argument, they talk about “the gendered self”,  focusing on women’s responsibility for crime, the offence of consorting and government responses to allegations of institutional child abuse.

1 - Associate Professor Emily Crawford

Non-Binding Norms in International Humanitarian Law – Efficacy, Legitimacy and Legality

Associate Professor Emily Crawford and Nicole discuss how non-binding instruments or ‘soft law’ have been received in international humanitarian law by looking at specific examples, such as the ICRC Study into Customary International Humanitarian Law. 

Have they been adopted in state practice? Are they referred to by international and national courts and tribunals? They consider potential benefits, such as their potential to contribute in a positive way to the development and clarification of the law, but also the possible pitfalls – lack of accountability and transparency and bias.  And what legal status, if any, do they have?

Watch the replay of Nicole Abadee in conversation with the Honourable Justice Andrew Bell, Chief Justice of New South Wales, as part of Sydney Law School's Distinguished Alumni Series.

Episode list


Associate Professor Emily Crawford


Professor Arlie Loughnan


Teela Reid


Dr Stacie Strong


Professor Yane Svetiev


Associate Professor Ghena Krayem


Professor Gerry Simpson