Europe's Constitutional Mosaic: Human Rights in the European Legal Space
Europe's Constitutional Mosaic (Hart publishing, 2011) eds. Shaw, Tierney and Walker
38 Pages Posted: 26 Jun 2014
Date Written: January 24, 2011
This chapter seeks to analyse and interrogate the varying regimes and processes which exist regarding human rights protection across the European continent, to highlight the problem spots and fault-lines and to suggest mechanisms whereby the worst outcomes may be avoided. In order to do this, I proceed by way of three different analyses. First, what does it mean to have a ‘European’ human rights regime? This enquiry questions whether, in presenting such a regime as ‘European’, we thereby render incoherent and dilute in value different human rights protections which are too diverse to be grouped together in this way. Secondly, this chapter asks whether the increasing use of the term ‘constitutional’ in this context is justified? And if so, what added value does it lend to human rights protection in Europe? Thirdly, if we acknowledge a European ‘mosaic’ in this context, as a means of capturing this diverse and complex state of affairs, what then emerges from such a reading – from acknowledgment of juxtaposition, contrast, overlap – an overall picture capable of coherence, or a situation verging towards chaos and entropy?
Keywords: Human Rights, European Union, European Convention on Human Rights, law and the image, EU Charter on Fundamental Rights, post-communist states membership of EU and ECHR, constitutions and constitutionalism
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