Jean-Christophe Bédard-Rubin is an incoming Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. His work explores Canadian constitutional culture from historical and comparative perspectives. He studied law, political science, and philosophy at Université Laval, Yale University, and the University of Toronto. During his doctoral studies, Jean-Christophe was the McMurty Fellow of the Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History and a Joseph-Armand Bombardier Scholar. He has done consultancy work on constitution-building for International IDEA and, prior to his graduate studies, he worked in litigation for the Quebec Department of Justice.
Jean-Christophe currently pursues two main research projects. The first is an intellectual history of the foundations of public law in French Canada. This project seeks to reconstruct the intellectual networks in which French Canadian public lawyers participated to excavate the transatlantic influences on the formation of Quebec’s legal syncretism. This genealogical reconstruction recovers the conceptual and theoretical innovations that allowed French Canadians to articulate a genuine theory of the state outside of the revolutionary framework. In so doing, this work sheds a different, somewhat oblique light on Canada’s constitutional experience and questions its status in comparative constitutional scholarship.
The second research project investigates judicial bilingualism in Canada. Using mixed social science methods, this project explores the various empirical impacts of bilingualism on judicial behaviour, the normative significance of legal bilingualism for the authority of judicial decisions, and the ways in which language shapes the dominant conception of the judicial role in Canada’s French and English public spheres.
Jean-Christophe’s work has been published in English and French in the Review of Constitutional Studies, the Canadian Journal of Law & Society, the Osgoode Hall Law Journal, the Bulletin d’histoire politique, and the International Journal of Canadian Studies, amongst others.