The East Asian Legal Tradition
Emory University School of Law
May 3, 2012
The Cambridge Companion to Comparative Law, Mauro Bussani & Ugo Mattei, eds., Cambridge University Press, 2012
Emory Public Law Research Paper No. 12-190
This essay is a chapter in the Cambridge Companion to Comparative Law. It provides a brief description of an East Asian legal tradition – namely, what I call the classical legal tradition of East Asia, or by way of analogy, a kind of East Asian ius gentium. Although it is a historically significant tradition, by no means does it exhaust the entire East Asian legal universe. The essay intentionally focuses only on the central and shared aspects of that tradition. Yet the very notion of an East Asian legal tradition itself requires further methodological observations. First, just what does the term ‘East Asia’ encompass? Second, what do we mean by a ‘legal tradition’? The answer to neither question is obvious. After addressing these preliminary considerations, the essay turns to developing the broad outlines of a classical East Asian legal tradition.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 25
Keywords: East Asia, China, Korea, Vietnam, Japan, ius gentium, Confucianism, area studies, comparative law, international law
Date posted: May 4, 2012 ; Last revised: May 28, 2014
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