The Power of Judges

Author: Carlo Guarnieri
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 9780198298359
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This text argues that certain elements affect the political significance of judicial decisions: Firstly, the status of judges; secondly, the organization of the judicial system including such things as the existence of judicial review of legislation and the structure of trials.

The Judge as Political Theorist

Author: David Robertson
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400836871
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The Judge as Political Theorist examines opinions by constitutional courts in liberal democracies to better understand the logic and nature of constitutional review. David Robertson argues that the constitutional judge's role is nothing like that of the legislator or chief executive, or even the ordinary judge. Rather, constitutional judges spell out to society the implications--on the ground--of the moral and practical commitments embodied in the nation's constitution. Constitutional review, in other words, is a form of applied political theory. Robertson takes an in-depth look at constitutional decision making in Germany, France, the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Canada, and South Africa, with comparisons throughout to the United States, where constitutional review originated. He also tackles perhaps the most vexing problem in constitutional law today--how and when to limit the rights of citizens in order to govern. As traditional institutions of moral authority have lost power, constitutional judges have stepped into the breach, radically altering traditional understandings of what courts can and should do. Robertson demonstrates how constitutions are more than mere founding documents laying down the law of the land, but increasingly have become statements of the values and principles a society seeks to embody. Constitutional judges, in turn, see it as their mission to transform those values into political practice and push for state and society to live up to their ideals.

Theory and Method in Socio Legal Research

Author: Reza Banakar
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1847316913
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Socio-legal researchers increasingly recognise the need to employ a wide variety of methods in studying law and legal phenomena, and the need to be informed by an understanding of debates about theory and method in mainstream social science. The papers in this volume illustrate how a range of topics, including EU law, ombudsmen, judges, lawyers, Shariah Councils and the quality assurance industry can be researched from a socio-legal perspective. The objective of the collection is to show how different methods can be used in researching law and legal phenomena, how methodological issues and debates in sociology are relevant to the study of law, and the importance of the debate between "structural" and "action" traditions in researching law. It also approaches the methodological problem of how sociology of law can address the content of legal practice from a variety of perspectives and discusses the relationship between pure and applied research. The editors provide a critical introduction to each of the six sections, and a general introduction on law, sociology and method. The collection will provide an invaluable resource for socio-legal researchers, law school researchers and postgraduates.

The Oxford Handbook of Law and Politics

Author: Keith E. Whittington
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191615064
Format: PDF
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The study of law and politics is one of the foundation stones of the discipline of political science, and it has been one of the most productive areas of cross-fertilization between the various subfields of political science and between political science and other cognate disciplines. This Handbook provides a comprehensive survey of the field of law and politics in all its diversity, ranging from such traditional subjects as theories of jurisprudence, constitutionalism, judicial politics and law-and-society to such re-emerging subjects as comparative judicial politics, international law, and democratization. The Oxford Handbook of Law and Politics gathers together leading scholars in the field to assess key literatures shaping the discipline today and to help set the direction of research in the decade ahead.

Children s Socio Economic Rights Democracy And The Courts

Author: Aoife Nolan
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1847318584
Format: PDF, Docs
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This book is concerned with children's economic and social rights (sometimes referred to simply as children's social rights). Despite increased academic interest in both children's rights and socio-economic rights over the last two decades, children's social and economic rights remain a comparatively neglected area. This is particularly true with regard to the role of the courts in the enforcement of such social rights. Aoife Nolan's book remedies this omission, focussing on the circumstances in which the courts can and should give effect to the social and economic rights of children. The arguments put forward are located within the context of, and develop, long-standing debates in constitutional law, democratic theory and human rights. The claims made by the author are supported and illustrated by concrete examples of judicial enforcement of children's social and economic rights from a variety of jurisdictions. The work is thus rooted in both theory and practice. The author brings together and addresses a wide range of issues that have never previously been considered together in book form. These include children's socio-economic rights; children as citizens and their position in relation to democratic decision-making processes; the implications of children and their rights for democratic and constitutional theory; the role of the courts in ensuring the enforcement of children's rights; and the debates surrounding the litigation and adjudication of social and economic rights. This book thus represents a major original contribution to the existing scholarship in a range of areas including human (and specifically social) rights, legal and political theory and constitutional law. 'Children's rights were often thought to be synonymous with economic and social welfare prior to the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989. Ironically, since that time, remarkably little scholarship has been devoted to the vitally important economic and social rights dimensions of children's rights. Nolan's book singlehandedly remedies that neglect and does so in a sophisticated, nuanced and balanced way. It provides a superb account of the pros and cons of judicial activism in promoting these rights.' Philip Alston, John Norton Pomeroy Professor, NYU Law School 'Thus far the burgeoning literature on the judicial enforcement of socio-economic rights has failed to engage in a sustained, systemic manner with this topic from the perspective of children and the complexity of their status as citizens within contemporary democracies. This book fills this gap and makes a major contribution to the literature in the three interrelated areas of the judicial review of socio-economic rights claims, children's rights, and democratic theory. Nolan navigates skilfully through the dense, but rich literature in these areas as well as relevant international and comparative law. In so doing she illuminates both the pitfalls and potential of resorting to courts in a partial response to the multifaceted and deeply entrenched global phenomenon of child poverty.' Professor Sandra Liebenberg, HF Oppenheimer Professor of Human Rights Law, University of Stellenbosch Law Faculty. Winner of the Kevin Boyle Book Prize 2012, awarded by the Irish Association of Law Teachers to a book that is deemed to have made an outstanding contribution to the understanding of law.

Interpreting Constitutions

Author: Jeffrey Denys Goldsworthy
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199274134
Format: PDF, Mobi
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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.

The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Constitutional Law

Author: Michel Rosenfeld
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199578613
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The field of comparative constitutional law is vast and diverse, international and interdisciplinary. The first single source of reference on the topic, the entries in Handbook are written by leading authorities and discuss the most important subjects in the field, covering the history and development of the discipline, core concepts, structure and interpretations, institutions, rights, and emerging trends. It is an invaluable resource for everyone in the field.

Governing with Judges

Author: Alec Stone Sweet
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198297300
Format: PDF, Docs
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Constitutional Politics in Europe: Governing with Judges elaborates a theory of constitutional politics, the process through which the discursive practices and techniques of constitutional adjudication come to structure the work of governments, parliaments, judges, and administrators. Focusingon the cases of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the European Union, the book examines the sources and consequences of the pan-European movement to confer constitutional review authority on a new governmental institution, the constitutional court. Detailed case studies illustrate how and to whatextent legislative processes have been placed under the influence of constitutional judges. In a growing number of policy domains, these judges function as powerful, adjunct legislators. As constitutional courts have consolidated their position as authoritative interpreters of the constitutionallaw, and especially of human rights provisions, the work of the judiciary, too, has gradually been constitutionalised. Today, ordinary judges seek to detect violations of the constitution in their application of the various codes, and to rewrite statutes that they deem unconstitutional.Constitutional politics have not only provoked the demise of traditional notions of parliamentary sovereignty, they have organized profound transformations in the very nature of European governance. Stone Sweet argues that constitutional adjudication constructs complex causal linkages between rule systems and normativity, on the one hand, and the strategic behaviour of individuals, on the other. The theory constitutes a novel synthesis of normative and rational approaches to politics. Thebook also addresses central questions raised by a wide range of ongoing theory projects, including the 'new institutionalism,'rational choice, principal-agent theories of delegation, and the new constitutionalism in Continental legal theory.

Routledge Handbook of Comparative Political Institutions

Author: Jennifer Gandhi
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317551796
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The Routledge Handbook of Comparative Political Institutions (HCPI) is designed to serve as a comprehensive reference guide to our accumulated knowledge and the cutting edge of scholarship about political institutions in the comparative context. It differs from existing handbooks in that it focuses squarely on institutions but also discusses how they intersect with the study of mass behaviour and explain important outcomes, drawing on the perspective of comparative politics. The Handbook is organized into three sections: The first section, consisting of six chapters, is organized around broad theoretical and empirical challenges affecting the study of institutions. It highlights the major issues that emerge among scholars defining, measuring, and analyzing institutions. The second section includes fifteen chapters, each of which handles a different substantive institution of importance in comparative politics. This section covers traditional topics, such as electoral rules and federalism, as well as less conventional but equally important areas, including authoritarian institutions, labor market institutions, and the military. Each chapter not only provides a summary of our current state of knowledge on the topic, but also advances claims that emphasise the research frontier on the topic and that should encourage greater investigation. The final section, encompassing seven chapters, examines the relationship between institutions and a variety of important outcomes, such as political violence, economic performance, and voting behavior. The idea is to consider what features of the political, sociological, and economic world we understand better because of the scholarly attention to institutions. Featuring contributions from leading researchers in the field from the US, UK, Europe and elsewhere, this Handbook will be of great interest to all students and scholars of political institutions, political behaviour and comparative politics. Jennifer Gandhi is Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Emory University. Rubén Ruiz-Rufino is Lecturer in International Politics, Department of Political Economy, King’s College London.

Understanding the Rule of Law

Author: Geert Corstens
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 150990364X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The 'rule of law' is increasingly regarded as integral to liberal democracy, and its significance is frequently discussed by lawyers, academics, politicians and the media. But the meaning of the phrase is not always clear. What does 'the rule of law' mean exactly? And why is it so important to the democratic state and, above all, its citizens? In Understanding the Rule of Law, former president of the Dutch Supreme Court Geert Corstens paints a lively and accessible portrait of the rule of law in practice. The focus is on the role of the courts, where the tensions in a democratic state governed by the rule of law are often discussed and resolved. Using landmark judgments, Geert Corstens explains what judges do and why their work is valuable. What do minimum sentences and prisoners' voting rights have to do with each other? Why is there no easy answer to the question of whether a paedophile organisation should be banned? Why is it no joke when the Italian politician Silvio Berlusconi calls the judiciary 'the cancer of democracy'? Understanding the Rule of Law provides the answers to these and many other questions, and is essential reading for anyone interested in the state of democracy today.