Decolonial Comparative Law: A Conceptual Beginning

Rabel Journal of Comparative and International Private Law (RabelsZ), Vol. 86, No. 1, pp. 166-188, January 2022

DOI: 10.1628/rabelsz-2022-0007

Max Planck Private Law Research Paper No. 22/1

25 Pages Posted: 26 Jan 2022

See all articles by Lena Salaymeh

Lena Salaymeh

Oxford School of Global and Area Studies; Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Ralf Michaels

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Abstract

This article introduces the intellectual motivations behind the establishment of the Decolonial Comparative Law research project. Beginning with an overview of the discipline of comparative law, we identify several methodological impasses that have not been resolved by previous critical approaches. We then introduce decolonial theory, generally, and decolonial legal studies, specifically, and argue for a decolonial approach to comparative law. We explain that decoloniality’s emphasis on delinking from coloniality and on recognizing pluriversality can improve on some problematic and embedded assumptions in mainstream comparative law. We also provide an outline of a conceptual beginning for decolonial approaches to comparative law.

Note: This article is published in the Max Planck Private Law Research Paper Series with the permission of the rights owner, Mohr Siebeck. All full-text Rabel Journal articles are available via pay-per-view or subscription at Mohr Siebeck's website.

Keywords: Decolonial comparative law, Comparative law method, Decolonial theory, Pluriversality, Coloniality, Decolonial legal theory

Suggested Citation

Salaymeh, Lena and Michaels, Ralf, Decolonial Comparative Law: A Conceptual Beginning. Rabel Journal of Comparative and International Private Law (RabelsZ), Vol. 86, No. 1, pp. 166-188, January 2022, DOI: 10.1628/rabelsz-2022-0007, Max Planck Private Law Research Paper No. 22/1, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4014459

Lena Salaymeh

Oxford School of Global and Area Studies ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

Ralf Michaels (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

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