Legal pluralism: Ziad Bahaa-Eldin.
The judicial review of regulatory agencies' decisions, and of statutory enactments with important economic content, presents unique and persistent problems. These decisions are often technical and complex, and the judicial review is usually performed by non-specialists who often seek to provide clear rules and predictability, not case-by-case economic balancing of their own. Sound economic policy requires a balancing of both costs and benefits and demand and supply. In Economic Reasoning and Judicial Review (AEI Press, March 2004)--an essay first presented in December 2003 as the AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies' 2003 Distinguished Lecture--Stephen G. Breyer, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, discusses these dilemmas in the context of recent Supreme Court decisions and offers suggestions for addressing them. In order to bring economic reasoning to bear in legal fields, such as antitrust law, intellectual property law, and economic regulation, Justice Breyer recommends the following: The law must take into greater consideration the underlying human purposes of the law, rather than simply favor strict legal categories. Courts should consider using independent experts for economic reasoning in technical areas rather than sending judges to economic seminars. These experts should understand the role that administrative considerations, such as the need for rules, play in the law. Given the law's reluctance to rely upon novel approaches, institutions outside the judiciary should debate and adopt economic methods for the courts to model. The legal process, Justice Breyer argues, "is too important to be left simply to the legal specialists, to the lawyers, or even to the judges." Those with basic economic or regulatory policymaking expertise need to participate in the judicial process. Whether serving as experts in individual cases or informed court watchers and critics, these experts can help lawyers and judges understand the tools of analysis and encourage their use. Justice Breyer has long been a leader in the quest to build a rational consensus on the appropriate role of government intervention in a market-based economy. As counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee, he was one of the chief architects of airline deregulation. As a Harvard University law professor and a Supreme Court Justice, he has made seminal contributions to the understanding of social and economic regulation, copyright law, and administrative law. Justice Breyer is the author of Regulation and Its Reform (Harvard, 1992) and Breaking the Vicious Circle: Toward Effective Risk Regulation (Harvard, 1993).
Unlike many other books about the American founding, this new work by two of the most prominent scholars of American political history emphasizes the coherence and intelligibility of the social compact theory. Social compact theory, the idea that government must be based on an agreement between those who govern and those who consent to be governed, was one of the Founders' few unifying philosophical positions, and it transcended the partisan politics of that era. Contributors to this volume present a comprehensive overview of the social compact theory, discussing its European philosophical origins, the development of the theory into the basis of the fledgling government, and the attitudes of some of the founders toward the theory and its traditional proponents. The authors argue forcefully and convincingly that the political ideas of the American Founders cannot be properly understood without understanding social compact theory and the exalted place it held in the construction of the American system of government.
This thought-provoking introduction to the study of comparative law provides in-depth analyses of all major comparative methodologies and theories and serves as a common sense guide to the study of foreign legal systems. It is written in a lively and accessible style and will prove indispensable reading to students of the subject. It also contains much that will be of interest to comparative law scholars, offering novel insights into commonplace methodological and theoretical questions and making a significant contribution to the field.
This is the first comprehensive account in English of the human rights jurisdiction of the Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt. The Court has full judicial review powers under the 1971 Egyptian Constitution and has played a central role in defending democratic vallues and in implementing international human rights standards in this pivotal Islamic country. The book includes chapters written by the Chief Justice, Dr. Awad Mohammad El-Morr, and other members of the judiciary. It contains a digest of key human rights judgments along with the texts of the Constitution and the Statute of the Supreme Constitutional Court. The book also examines the influence of United States constitutional law as well as international human rights law on Egypt's highest court.
This volume addresses an important historiographical gap by assessing the respective contributions of tradition and foreign influences to the 19th century codification of criminal law. More specifically, it focuses on the extent of French influence – among others – in European and American civil law jurisdictions. In this regard, the book seeks to dispel a number of myths concerning the French model’s actual influence on European and Latin American criminal codes. The impact of the Napoleonic criminal code on other jurisdictions was real, but the scope and extent of its influence were significantly less than has sometimes been claimed. The overemphasis on French influence on other civil law jurisdictions is partly due to a fundamental assumption that modern criminal codes constituted a break with the past. The question as to whether they truly broke with the past or were merely a degree of reform touches on a difficult issue, namely, the dichotomy between tradition and foreign influences in the codification of criminal law. Scholarship has unfairly ignored this important subject, an oversight that this book remedies.
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Revolution by Judiciary
Author: Jed Rubenfeld
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Although constitutional law is supposed to be fixed and enduring, its central narrative in the twentieth century has been one of radical reinterpretation--Brown v. Board of Education, Roe v. Wade, Bush v. Gore. What, if anything, justifies such radical reinterpretation? How does it work doctrinally? What, if anything, structures it or limits it? Jed Rubenfeld finds a pattern in American constitutional interpretation that answers these questions convincingly. He posits two different understandings of how constitutional rights would apply or not apply to particular legislation. One is that a right would be violated if certain laws were passed. The other is that a right would not be violated. He calls the former "Application Understandings" and the latter "No-Application Understandings." He finds that constitutional law has almost always adhered to all of the original Application Understandings, but where it has departed from history, as it did in the Brown decision, it has departed from No-Application Understandings. Specifically, the Fourteenth Amendment did not prohibit racial segregation, so Rubenfeld argues that the Supreme Court had no problem reinterpreting it to prohibit it. It was a No-Application Understanding. This is a powerful argument that challenges current theories of constitutional interpretation from Bork to Dworkin. It rejects simplistic originalism, but restores historicity to constitutional theorizing.
States - Enid Hill.
Constitutionalism and Democracy
Author: Douglas Greenberg, Stanley N. Katz, Steven C. Wheatley, Melanie Beth Oliviero
Publisher: Oxford University Press
The political changes which have occurred in the last three years have been phenomenal--the dissolving of the former Soviet Union, the impending union of Western Europe, and the evolution of democracy in Eastern Europe. What changes have occurred in the legal structure of these countries? How have their constitutions been affected by these developments? Stanley Katz, Douglas Greenberg, and other scholars and politicians from numerous countries discuss in this work the experiences of constitutionalism. Previously, little work has been done in this field, but now Constitutionalism and Democracy represents the range and depth for serious constitutional analysis. Discussing concrete issues such as human rights, nationalism, and pluralism, this volume will be essential in understanding the phenomenon of constitutionalism in various parts of the world.
This book offers a series of new studies on the dynamics of political and legal culture as well as of conflict management in contemporary Africa, taking inspiration from and honoring the scholarly contributions and impact of Prof. Gerti Hesseling (1946-2009) in African Studies.
Author: Robert Elgie
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Robert Elgie examines the relationship between semi-presidentialism and democratic performance. There are over 50 countries with a semi-presidential constitution. This book shows that the president-parliamentary sub-type is more likely to be associated with a poorer democratic performance than its premier-presidential counterpart.