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Justice in Many Rooms Since Galanter: De-Romanticizing Legal Pluralism Through the Cultural Defense

Law and Contemporary Problems, Vol. 71, pp. 139-146, Spring 2008

University of Wisconsin Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1095

6 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2009  

Mitra J. Sharafi

University of Wisconsin Law School

Date Written: 2008

Abstract

Marc Galanter's article, 'Justice in Many Rooms' (1981) was prescient in recognizing that nonstate law was not necessarily kinder and gentler than state law. While many writing in the 1970s and 80s celebrated nonstate law as more egalitarian and less coercive than state law, Galanter held back. Post-1980s critiques of the cultural defense, particularly by Asian American feminist lawyers, have also contributed to a shift in the scholarly perception of nonstate law. In the spirit of Galanter's piece, the cultural defense debate should be read not just as a discussion about multicultural tolerance, but also as an integral part of the legal pluralism literature.

Keywords: legal pluralism, cultural defense, customary law, multiculturalism, immigration, legal anthropology categories, Asian Law

JEL Classification: Z12, Z19, Y80

Suggested Citation

Sharafi, Mitra J., Justice in Many Rooms Since Galanter: De-Romanticizing Legal Pluralism Through the Cultural Defense (2008). Law and Contemporary Problems, Vol. 71, pp. 139-146, Spring 2008; University of Wisconsin Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1095. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1464900 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1464900

Mitra J. Sharafi (Contact Author)

University of Wisconsin Law School ( email )

975 Bascom Mall
Madison, WI 53706
United States

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