Transnationalism, Legal Pluralism and Types of Conflicts: Contractual Norms Concerning Domestic Workers

Recht der Werkelijkheid, Forthcoming

Amsterdam Law School Research Paper No. 2011-31

General Subserie Research Paper No. 2011-04

12 Pages Posted: 27 Sep 2011

See all articles by Antoinette Vlieger

Antoinette Vlieger

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law

Date Written: September 26, 2011

Abstract

Transnationalism and migration are recognized contributors to legal pluralism. Scholars of legal pluralism state that in conflicts, social actors sustain their claims with arguments from coexisting legal systems. They maneuver between different legal systems, or contradicting norms within one system, to achieve the most satisfactory decision in an existing conflict. In doing so, they use norms as discursive tools. Indeed, according to data concerning domestic workers in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, this maneuvering with norms as discursive tools, is often recognizable in conflicts between the workers and their employers. However, transnational contractual norms and the legal pluralism they create are not merely discursive tools in existing conflicts, but also regularly the cause of conflicts. Domestic workers conclude agreements with agents in their countries of origin, while employers conclude agreements with different agents in the destination countries. Both parties think the other party has signed the same contract, while in reality that is not the case. Because of the differences between the two sets of contractual norms, these norms cause conflicts and are not merely discursive tools. This finding calls for a division between different types of conflicts, which is proposed herein for the purpose of socio-legal analysis of conflicts in general and particularly in situations of transnationalism and legal pluralism.

Keywords: Domestic workers, Transnationalism, Types of conflicts, Legal pluralism, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Contractual norms

JEL Classification: K19, J61

Suggested Citation

Vlieger, Antoinette, Transnationalism, Legal Pluralism and Types of Conflicts: Contractual Norms Concerning Domestic Workers (September 26, 2011). Recht der Werkelijkheid, Forthcoming, Amsterdam Law School Research Paper No. 2011-31, General Subserie Research Paper No. 2011-04, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1933729

Antoinette Vlieger (Contact Author)

University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Law ( email )

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