Constitutions and Democracy in Post-National Times: A Political-Sociological Approach

Irish Journal of Sociology, Special issue on 'Engaging the Cosmopolitan: Contemporary Approaches,' Forthcoming

20 Pages Posted: 30 Mar 2013 Last revised: 25 Jun 2013

See all articles by Paul Blokker

Paul Blokker

Charles University in Prague

Date Written: December 15, 2012

Abstract

The modern idea of the constitution is closely tied up with the political form of the nation-state, but the post-national age poses various challenges to this idea, not least due to the emergence of constitutional or quasi-constitutional regimes both beyond and below the nation-state. While a good, and steadily growing, amount of research probes the constitutional dimensions on the international and supranational levels, the domestic dimensions and related transformations, and in particular the implications of constitutional pluralism for meaningful democratic practice, seem, however, less prominent in current debate. I argue that domestic constitutional dynamics and conflict, not least regarding democratic participation, can be fruitfully analysed through the lens of a political-sociological approach to constitutions and constitutionalism. In order to outline such an approach in one specific way, I briefly discuss, firstly, the recent (re-)emergence of constitutional sociology. Secondly, I will situate constitutional sociology within a wider debate on constitutionalism and democracy. Thirdly, I will propose a sociological, ‘historical-functionalist’ approach to the analysis of constitutions, which, I will then, fourthly, relate to a comparative and interpretative political sociology of constitutional discourses and political, legal, and social critique.

Keywords: Constitutionalism, Democracy, Social critique, Socio-functional dimensions, Participation

Suggested Citation

Blokker, Paul, Constitutions and Democracy in Post-National Times: A Political-Sociological Approach (December 15, 2012). Irish Journal of Sociology, Special issue on 'Engaging the Cosmopolitan: Contemporary Approaches,' Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2241099

Paul Blokker (Contact Author)

Charles University in Prague ( email )

Celetná 13
Praha 1, 116 36
Czech Republic

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
29
Abstract Views
338
PlumX Metrics