The Layers of Legal Development in Myanmar
Melissa Crouch (2014) ‘The Layers of Legal Development in Myanmar’ in Melissa Crouch and Tim Lindsey (eds) Law, Society and Transition in Myanmar. Oxford: Hart Publishing
37 Pages Posted: 18 Oct 2014 Last revised: 13 Jan 2017
Date Written: October 15, 2014
This paper provides an overview of the development of the legal system in Myanmar, as background for the chapters that follow in this volume. It considers the origins of the law in Myanmar, the key influences on the development of the modern system and the direction it has taken. It seeks to go beyond the 'common law' label to consider the development of Burmese Buddhist law, the colonial legal system, the post-independence period, socialism, and military rule. It identifies that law has often been used by force across these political eras, and that the relatively shallow roots of current legal institutions, including a weak judiciary, present particular challenges for the uncertain future of law in Myanmar.
Keywords: Burma, Myanmar, common law, development
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