Reconceptualizing Law and Politics in the Transnational Constitutional and Legal Pluralist Approaches

24 Pages Posted: 21 Jul 2008

See all articles by Ruth Buchanan

Ruth Buchanan

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School

Date Written: July 21, 2008

Abstract

Despite the apparent fluidity that characterizes this historical moment as well as this moment in legal scholarship, this paper argues that there is also an enduring rigidity in the persistence of a modernist conception of law. In the way that the important questions raised for legal scholars in the current moment are identified as questions for legal theory, they are also already 'framed' in terms of a particular approach to the relationship between legality and legitimacy. This is revealed in debates over post-national constitutionalism which, even as they purport to transcend the nation-state, fail to escape some form of reinscription of the relation between law and a centralized sovereign authority. The author suggests that an alternative, more capacious approach to re-imagining law in the transnational might be found in a turn to legal pluralism, understood as a metaphor or style of thinking about law.

Keywords: Legal Pluralism, Postcolonial Legal Theory, Transnational Constitutionalism, WTO Constitutionalism

JEL Classification: K10, K33

Suggested Citation

Buchanan, Ruth, Reconceptualizing Law and Politics in the Transnational Constitutional and Legal Pluralist Approaches (July 21, 2008). CLPE Research Paper No. 19/2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1167722 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1167722

Ruth Buchanan (Contact Author)

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

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