Interpreting Constitutions

Author: Jeffrey Denys Goldsworthy
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199274134
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This book describes the constitutions of six major federations and how they have been interpreted by their highest courts, compares the interpretive methods and underlying principles that have guided the courts, and explores the reasons for major differences between these methods and principles. Among the interpretive methods discussed are textualism, purposivism, structuralism and originalism. Each of the six federations is the subject of a separate chapter written by a leading authority in the field: Jeffrey Goldsworthy (Australia), Peter Hogg (Canada), Donald Kommers (Germany), S.P. Sathe (India), Heinz Klug (South Africa), and Mark Tushnet (United States). Each chapter describes not only the interpretive methodology currently used by the courts, but the evolution of that methodology since the constitution was first enacted. The book also includes a concluding chapter which compares these methodologies, and attempts to explain variations by reference to different social, historical, institutional and political circumstances.

Building the Constitution

Author: James Fowkes
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107124093
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A revisionary account of the South African Constitutional Court, its working method and the neglected political underpinnings of its success.

The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Constitutional Law

Author: Michel Rosenfeld
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191640174
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The field of comparative constitutional law has grown immensely over the past couple of decades. Once a minor and obscure adjunct to the field of domestic constitutional law, comparative constitutional law has now moved front and centre. Driven by the global spread of democratic government and the expansion of international human rights law, the prominence and visibility of the field, among judges, politicians, and scholars has grown exponentially. Even in the United States, where domestic constitutional exclusivism has traditionally held a firm grip, use of comparative constitutional materials has become the subject of a lively and much publicized controversy among various justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. The trend towards harmonization and international borrowing has been controversial. Whereas it seems fair to assume that there ought to be great convergence among industrialized democracies over the uses and functions of commercial contracts, that seems far from the case in constitutional law. Can a parliamentary democracy be compared to a presidential one? A federal republic to a unitary one? Moreover, what about differences in ideology or national identity? Can constitutional rights deployed in a libertarian context be profitably compared to those at work in a social welfare context? Is it perilous to compare minority rights in a multi-ethnic state to those in its ethnically homogeneous counterparts? These controversies form the background to the field of comparative constitutional law, challenging not only legal scholars, but also those in other fields, such as philosophy and political theory. Providing the first single-volume, comprehensive reference resource, the Oxford Handbook of Comparative Constitutional Law will be an essential road map to the field for all those working within it, or encountering it for the first time. Leading experts in the field examine the history and methodology of the discipline, the central concepts of constitutional law, constitutional processes, and institutions - from legislative reform to judicial interpretation, rights, and emerging trends.

The Migration of Constitutional Ideas

Author: Sujit Choudhry
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781139460774
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The migration of constitutional ideas across jurisdictions is one of the central features of contemporary constitutional practice. The increasing use of comparative jurisprudence in interpreting constitutions is one example of this. In this 2007 book, leading figures in the study of comparative constitutionalism and comparative constitutional politics from North America, Europe and Australia discuss the dynamic processes whereby constitutional systems influence each other. They explore basic methodological questions which have thus far received little attention, and examine the complex relationship between national and supranational constitutionalism - an issue of considerable contemporary interest in Europe. The migration of constitutional ideas is discussed from a variety of methodological perspectives - comparative law, comparative politics, and cultural studies of law - and contributors draw on case-studies from a wide variety of jurisdictions: Australia, Hungary, India, South Africa, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Canada.

How Constitutions Change

Author: Dawn Oliver
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 184731788X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This set of essays explores how constitutions change and are changed in a number of countries, and how the 'constitution' of the EU changes and is changed. For a range of reasons, including internal and external pressures, the constitutional arrangements in many countries are changing. Constitutional change may be formal, involving amendments to the texts of Constitutions or the passage of legislation of a clearly constitutional kind, or informal and organic, as where court decisions affect the operation of the system of government, or where new administrative and other arrangements (eg agencification) affect or articulate or alter the operation of the constitution of the country, without the need to resort to formal change. The countries in this study include, from the EU, a common law country, a Nordic one, a former communist state, several civil law systems, parliamentary systems and a hybrid one (France). Chapters on non EU countries include two on developing countries (India and South Africa), two on common law countries without entrenched written constitutions (Israel and New Zealand), a presidential system (the USA) and three federal ones (Switzerland, the USA and Canada). In the last two chapters the editors conduct a detailed comparative analysis of the jurisdiction-based chapters and explore the question whether any overarching theory or theories about constitutional change in liberal democracies emerge from the study.

The Endurance of National Constitutions

Author: Zachary Elkins
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139479741
Format: PDF
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Constitutions are supposed to provide an enduring structure for politics. Yet only half live more than nine years. Why is it that some constitutions endure while others do not? In The Endurance of National Constitutions Zachary Elkins, Tom Ginsburg and James Melton examine the causes of constitutional endurance from an institutional perspective. Supported by an original set of cross-national historical data, theirs is the first comprehensive study of constitutional mortality. They show that whereas constitutions are imperilled by social and political crises, certain aspects of a constitution's design can lower the risk of death substantially. Thus, to the extent that endurance is desirable - a question that the authors also subject to scrutiny - the decisions of founders take on added importance.

Interpreting Statutes

Author: D. Neil MacCormick
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351926381
Format: PDF, Mobi
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This book is a work of outstanding importance for scholars of comparative law and jurisprudence and for lawyers engaged in EC law or other international forms of practice. It reviews, compares and analyses the practice of interpretation in nine countries representing Europe as well as the US and Argentina in common and civil law; it also explores implications for general theories of interpretation and of justification. Its authors, who include Aulis Aarnio, Robert Alexy, Ralf Dreier, Enrique Zuleta-Puceiro, Michel Troper, Christophe Grzegorczyk, Jean-Louis Gardes, Enrico Pattaro, Michele Taruffo, Massimo La Torre, Jerry Wroblewski, Alexsander Peczenik, Gunnar Bergholtz and Zenon Bankowski, as well as editors Robert S. Summers and D. Neil MacCormick, constitute an international team of great distinction; they have worked on this project for over seven years.

Comparative Constitutional Reasoning

Author: András Jakab
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1108138616
Format: PDF, ePub
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To what extent is the language of judicial opinions responsive to the political and social context in which constitutional courts operate? Courts are reason-giving institutions, with argumentation playing a central role in constitutional adjudication. However, a cursory look at just a handful of constitutional systems suggests important differences in the practices of constitutional judges, whether in matters of form, style, or language. Focusing on independently-verified leading cases globally, a combination of qualitative and quantitative analysis offers the most comprehensive and systematic account of constitutional reasoning to date. This analysis is supported by the examination of eighteen legal systems around the world including the European Court of Human Rights and the European Court of Justice. Universally common aspects of constitutional reasoning are identified in this book, and contributors also examine whether common law countries differ to civil law countries in this respect.

Constitutional Interpretation in Singapore

Author: Jaclyn L Neo
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317428080
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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At the heart of constitutional interpretation is the struggle between, on the one hand, fidelity to founding meanings, and, on the other hand, creative interpretation to suit the context and needs of an evolving society. This book considers the recent growth of constitutional cases in Singapore in the last ten years. It examines the underpinnings of Singapore’s constitutional system, explores how Singapore courts have dealt with issues related to rights and power, and sets developments in Singapore in the wider context of new thinking and constitutional developments worldwide. It argues that Singapore is witnessing a shift in legal and political culture as both judges and citizens display an increasing willingness to engage with constitutional ideas and norms.