#mortsuspecte is a project supported by students of the « Seminar for Law and Justice History » (LHIST2570, Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium).
The theme of the academic year 2015-2016 are crime and investigation from early modern to contemporary history. The role of expertise and forensic science in establishing the sense of suspicious death (mort suspecte) are the center of the project. Court records from the city of Namur (18th century) and from the Cour d’Assises de Brabant (19th century) are the main historical sources used by the students. A whole series of questions arise: what is the nature of the crime, how the experts, the judge and the jury construct their opinions, their experiences and their abilities; what is a crime passionnel; what are the legal proceedings;… ? The students are invited to use various historical materials (legal texts, forensic journals and manuals, press,…), to put these sources in a historical context (recent literature, historiography) and finally to write an academic paper which will be summarized in a short text and posted on the blog.
Through the #mortsuspecte project, the students have the opportunity to participate to the valuation of historical material as an object, with an original and dynamic scope.
LHIST 2570 2015-2016. Lecturer: Veerle Massin. Teaching assistants: Romain Parmentier, Quentin Verreycken. Students: Virginie Berteau, Charlène Crahay, Vincent Desguin, Laetitia Junk, Alexia Kruppa, Thomas Lambier, Félicien Magos, Simon Michel, Loïc Naudin, François Pierrard, Alain Rahier, Mélissa Senterre, Dorian Simon, Bryan Willems.
The pictures of the #mortsuspecte project are from :
Archives générales du Royaume, Bruxelles, Dépôt Cuvelier (AGR2), Cour d’Assises de Brabant, 1895-1915
Archives de l’Etat à Namur, Haute Cour de Namur, 17e et 18e siècles