Functional, Overlapping, Competing Jurisdictions Among Fractionalized Agents: Medieval Spain
Daniel J. Smith
Troy University - Manuel H. Johnson Center for Political Economy
October 3, 2011
Most economists doubt the operability of functional, overlapping, competing jurisdictions (FOCJ) among large groups of homogenous agents; few could be found that would hold that FOCJ would work among large groups of socially distant agents. Yet, it is under precisely those circumstances that FOCJ would offer the most benefit, allowing socially distant agents to use their own legal courts, judged according to their own law, to minimize confrontations with other groups. This paper argues that FOCJ can be used to facilitate exchange and foster quality institutions and cordially relations among large groups of socially distant agents. Medieval Spain, where Christians, Jews and Muslims resided in close proximity from approximately 711-1492 is used to provide evidence of such a system in practice.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24
Keywords: FOCJ, Ethno-Linguistic Fractionalization, Legal Systems
JEL Classification: B52, K20, K40working papers series
Date posted: October 4, 2011 ; Last revised: October 26, 2011
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