More related to constitutional law

This book focuses on Andrew Arato’s democratic theory and its relevance to contemporary issues such as processes of democratization, civil society, constitution-making, and the modern Executive.

Andrew Arato is -both globally and disciplinarily- a prominent thinker in the fields of democratic theory, constitutional law, and comparative politics, influencing several generations of scholars. This is the first volume to systematically address his democratic theory. Including contributions from leading scholars such as Dick Howard, Ulrich Preuss, Hubertus Buchstein, Janos Kis, Uri Ram, Leonardo Avritzer, Carlos de la Torre, and Nicolás Lynch, this book is organized around three major areas of Arato ́s influence on contemporary political and social thought. The first section offers a comprehensive view of Arato’s scholarship from his early work on critical theory and Western Marxism to his current research on constitution-making and its application. The second section shifts its focus from the previous, comprehensive approach, to a much more specific one: Arato ́s widespread influence on the study of civil society in democratization processes in Latin America. The third section includes a previously unpublished work, ‘A conceptual history of dictatorship (and its rivals,)’ one of the few systematic interrogations on the meaning of a political form of fundamental relevance in the contemporary world.

Critical Theory and Democracy

will be of interest to critical and social theorists, and all Arato scholars.
Translated by Ciaran Cronin.

In the midst of the current crisis that is threatening to derail the historical project of European unification, Jürgen Habermas has been one of the most perceptive critics of the ineffectual and evasive responses to the global financial crisis, especially by the German political class. This extended essay on the constitution for Europe represents Habermas’s constructive engagement with the European project at a time when the crisis of the eurozone is threatening the very existence of the European Union. There is a growing realization that the European treaty needs to be revised in order to deal with the structural defects of monetary union, but a clear perspective for the future is missing. Drawing on his analysis of European unification as a process in which international treaties have progressively taken on features of a democratic constitution, Habermas explains why the current proposals to transform the system of European governance into one of executive federalism is a mistake. His central argument is that the European project must realize its democratic potential by evolving from an international into a cosmopolitan community. The opening essay on the role played by the concept of human dignity in the genealogy of human rights in the modern era throws further important light on the philosophical foundations of Habermas’s theory of how democratic political institutions can be extended beyond the level of nation-states.

Now that the question of Europe and its future is once again at the centre of public debate, this important intervention by one of the greatest thinkers of our time will be of interest to a wide readership.

In October 1999, some fifteen academic experts and government practitio ners from Germany and North America gathered for two days at the Uni ver sity of Augsburg to discuss the topic of "Constitutional Reform and Consti tutional Jurisprudence in Canada and the United States." The present volume documents the results of that conference, a collaborative effort of the De partment of Political Science, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, and the Institute for Canadian Studies, University of Augsburg. In organizing this workshop, we were guided by two basic sets of ideas and assumptions: First, all "established" democracies are regularly confron ted with the need to adjust their constitutional order to changes in their envi ronment lest democratic stability be transformed into rigidity; in many wes tern nations, including Canada and the United States, developments such as the crisis of the Keynesian welfare-state or the emergence of increasingly heterogeneous, postmodern societies have ushered in an era of heightened, yet not always successful constitutional reform activity. Secondly, however, there is no unique path towards, or model of, an "optimal" constitutional order, however defined; rather, constitutional reform processes, their under Iying normative principles and their outcomes are strongly path and context dependent. Therefore, the participants of the workshop and authors of this volume were asked to examine the specific preconditions, context, nature and impact of recent constitutional reform processes in the Uni ted States and Canada.
"In modern nations, political disagreement is the source of both the gravest danger and the greatest security," writes Cass Sunstein. All democracies face intense political conflict. But is this conflict necessarily something to fear? In this provocative book, one of our leading political and legal theorists reveals how a nation's divisions of conviction and belief can be used to safeguard democracy. Confronting one explosive political issue after another, from presidential impeachment to the limits of religious liberty, from discrimination against women and gays to the role of the judiciary, Sunstein constructs a powerful new perspective from which to show how democracies negotiate their most divisive real-world problems. He focuses on a series of concrete concerns that go to the heart of the relationship between the idea of democracy and the idea of constitutionalism. Illustrating his discussion with examples from constitutional debates and court-cases in South Africa, Eastern Europe, Israel, America, and elsewhere, Sunstein takes readers through a number of highly charged questions: When should government be permitted to control discriminatory behavior by or within religious organizations? Does it make sense to govern on the basis of popular referenda? Can the right to have an abortion be defended? Can we defend Internet regulation? Should the law step in if children are being schooled in discriminatory preferences and beliefs? Should a constitution protect rights to food, shelter, and health care? Disputes over questions such as these can be fierce enough to pose a grave threat. But in a paradox whose elaboration forms the core of Sunstein's book, it is a nation's apparently threatening diversity of opinion that can ensure its integrity. Extending his important recent work on the way deliberation within like-minded groups can produce extremism, Sunstein breaks new ground in identifying the mechanisms behind political conflict in democratic nations. At the same time, he develops a profound understanding of a constitutional democracy's system of checks and balances. Sunstein shows how a good constitution, fostering a "republic of reasons," enables people of opposing ethical and religious commitments to reach agreement where agreement is necessary, while making it unnecessary to reach agreement when agreement is impossible. A marvel of lucid, subtle reasoning, DESIGNING DEMOCRACY makes invaluable reading for anyone concerned with the promises and pitfalls of the democratic experiment.
The U.S. Supreme Court is the quintessential example of a court that expanded its agenda into policy areas that were once reserved for legislatures. Yet scholars know very little about what causes attention to various policy areas to ebb and flow on the Supreme Court’s agenda. Vanessa A. Baird’s Answering the Call of the Court: How Justices and Litigants Set the Supreme Court Agenda represents the first scholarly attempt to connect justices’ priorities, litigants’ strategies, and aggregate policy outputs of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Most previous studies on the Supreme Court’s agenda examine case selection, but Baird demonstrates that the agenda-setting process begins long before justices choose which cases they will hear. When justices signal their interest in a particular policy area, litigants respond by sponsoring well-crafted cases in those policy areas. Approximately four to five years later, the Supreme Court’s agenda in those areas expands, with cases that are comparatively more politically important and divisive than other cases the Court hears. From issues of discrimination and free expression to welfare policy, from immigration to economic regulation, strategic supporters of litigation pay attention to the goals of Supreme Court justices and bring cases they can use to achieve those goals.

Since policy making in courts is iterative, multiple well-crafted cases are needed for courts to make comprehensive policy. Baird argues that judicial policy-making power depends on the actions of policy entrepreneurs or other litigants who systematically respond to the priorities and preferences of Supreme Court justices.

All democratic constitutions feature "the people" as their author and ultimate source of legitimacy. They claim to embody the political form that citizens are in some sense supposed to have given themselves. But in what sense, exactly? When does a constitution really or genuinely speak for the people? Such questions are especially pertinent to our present condition, where the voice of "the people" turns out to be irrevocably fragmented, and people themselves want to speak and be heard in their own voices.

Founding Acts explores the relationship between constitutional claims of popular sovereignty and the practice of constitution-making in our pluralistic age. Serdar Tekin argues that the process of making a constitution, or its pedigree, is as morally and politically significant as its content. Consequently, democratic constitution-making is not only about making a democratic constitution but also about making it, as much as possible, democratically.

Tekin develops two overarching arguments in support of this claim. First, citizen participation in the process of constitution-making is essential to the democratic legitimacy of a new constitution. Second, collective action, that is, the political experience of constructing public life together, is what binds diverse people into a democratic peoplehood. Bringing into dialogue a wide range of canonical and contemporary thinkers, Tekin examines historical realities extending from revolutionary America and France to contemporary South Africa and Germany.

What authority does international law really have for the United States? When and to what extent should the United States participate in the international legal system? This forcefully argued book by legal scholar Jeremy Rabkin provides an insightful new look at this important and much-debated question.

Americans have long asked whether the United States should join forces with institutions such as the International Criminal Court and sign on to agreements like the Kyoto Protocol. Rabkin argues that the value of international agreements in such circumstances must be weighed against the threat they pose to liberties protected by strong national authority and institutions. He maintains that the protection of these liberties could be fatally weakened if we go too far in ceding authority to international institutions that might not be zealous in protecting the rights Americans deem important. Similarly, any cessation of authority might leave Americans far less attached to the resulting hybrid legal system than they now are to laws they can regard as their own.



Law without Nations? traces the traditional American wariness of international law to the basic principles of American thought and the broader traditions of liberal political thought on which the American Founders drew: only a sovereign state can make and enforce law in a reliable way, so only a sovereign state can reliably protect the rights of its citizens. It then contrasts the American experience with that of the European Union, showing the difficulties that can arise from efforts to merge national legal systems with supranational schemes. In practice, international human rights law generates a cloud of rhetoric that does little to secure human rights, and in fact, is at odds with American principles, Rabkin concludes.


A challenging and important contribution to the current debates about the meaning of multilateralism and international law, Law without Nations? will appeal to a broad cross-section of scholars in both the legal and political science arenas.

Since the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon, key improvements have occurred in the democratisation of EU international relations through the increased powers of the European Parliament. Nevertheless, a comprehensive legal analysis of the new developments in democratic control of EU external action has not yet been performed.

This book aims to improve the understanding of the set of mechanisms through which democratic control is exerted over EU external action, in times of profound transformations of the legal and political architecture of the European integration process. It analyses the role of the Court of Justice in the democratisation of international relations through EU law, and further provides a legal overview of the role of the European Parliament in the conduct of the EU's international relations. In those areas where the powers of the Parliament have greatly increased the book aims to raise questions as to whether this enhanced position has contributed to a more consistent external action. At the same time, the book aims to contribute to the debate on judicial activism in connection with the democratisation of EU external action. It offers the reader a detailed and topical analysis of the recent developments in democratic control of external action which are of relevance in the daily practice of EU external relations lawyers, including the topic of mixed agreements

This text will be of key interest to scholars and students working on EU external relations law, EU institutional law, European Union studies/politics, international relations, and more broadly to policy-makers and practitioners, particularly to those with an interest on the European Parliament and the Court of Justice of the European Union.

A study of John Marshall’s political thought with special emphasis on his views of constitutional legitimacy, sovereignty, citizenship, and national identity.


John Marshall’s Constitutionalism is an exploration of Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall’s political thought. Often celebrated and occasionally derided as a force in the creation of American jurisprudence and the elevation of the American Supreme Court, Marshall is too seldom studied as a political thinker. Clyde H. Ray explores this neglected dimension of Marshall’s thought by examining his constitutional theory in the context of several of his most important Supreme Court opinions, arguing that Marshall’s political theory emphasized the federal Constitution’s fundamental legitimacy; its sovereignty over national and state government policy; its importance in defining responsible citizenship; and its role in establishing a Constitution-based form of American nationalism. This cross-disciplinary argument illustrates Marshall’s devotion to the Constitution as a new source of national identity during the early national period. Furthermore, Ray argues that Marshall’s constitutionalism makes important contributions not only to our understanding of American constitutionalism during his time, but also conveys important lessons for readers seeking a better understanding of the Constitution’s role in the United States today.


“Ray’s deep analysis shows how Chief Justice John Marshall’s constitutional thought can inform our thinking today about issues of legitimacy, federalism, and national identity.” — Frank Colucci, Purdue University Northwest

In this seminal work, Bernard Siegan traces the history of onstitutional protection for economic liberties in the United States. He argues that the law began to change with respect to economic liberties in the late 1930s. At that time, the Supreme Court abdicated much of its authority to protect property rights, and instead condoned the expansion of state power over private property. Siegan brings the argument originally advanced in the .first edition completely up to date. He explores the moral position behind capitalism and discusses why former communist countries flirting with decentralization and a free market (for instance, China, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Laos) have become more progressive and prosperous as a result. He contrasts the benefits of a free, deregulated economy with the dangers of over-regulation and moves towards socialized welfare—most specifically as happened during Franklin Roosevelt's presidency. Supporting his thesis with historical court cases, Siegan discusses the past and present status of economic liberties under the Constitution, clarifies constitutional interpretation and due process, and suggests ways of safeguarding economic liberties. About the original edition, Doug Bandow of Reason noted, "Siegan has written a vitally important book that is sure to ignite an impassioned legal and philosophical debate. The reason—the necessity—for protecting economic liberty is no less than that guaranteeing political and civil liberty." Joseph Sobran of the National Review wrote, "Siegan...makes a powerful general case for economic liberty, on both historical and more strictly empirical grounds.... Siegan has done a brilliant piece of work, not only where it was badly needed, but where the need had hardly been recognized until he addressed it." And Edwin Meese remarked that, "This timely and important book shows how far we have drifted from protecting basic liberties that the Framers of the Constitution sought to secure. I recommend it highly." This new, completely revised edition of Economic Liberties and the Constitution will be essential reading for students of economics, history, public policy, law, and political science.
In 1987, E.L. Doctorow celebrated the Constitution's bicentennial by reading it. "It is five thousand words long but reads like fifty thousand," he said. Distinguished legal scholar Garrett Epps--himself an award-winning novelist--disagrees. It's about 7,500 words. And Doctorow "missed a good deal of high rhetoric, many literary tropes, and even a trace of, if not wit, at least irony," he writes. Americans may venerate the Constitution, "but all too seldom is it read." In American Epic, Epps takes us through a complete reading of the Constitution--even the "boring" parts--to achieve an appreciation of its power and a holistic understanding of what it says. In this book he seeks not to provide a definitive interpretation, but to listen to the language and ponder its meaning. He draws on four modes of reading: scriptural, legal, lyric, and epic. The Constitution's first three words, for example, sound spiritual--but Epps finds them to be more aspirational than prayer-like. "Prayers are addressed to someone . . . either an earthly king or a divine lord, and great care is taken to name the addressee. . . . This does the reverse. The speaker is 'the people,' the words addressed to the world at large." He turns the Second Amendment into a poem to illuminate its ambiguity. He notices oddities and omissions. The Constitution lays out rules for presidential appointment of officers, for example, but not removal. Should the Senate approve each firing? Can it withdraw its "advice and consent" and force a resignation? And he challenges himself, as seen in his surprising discussion of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in light of Article 4, which orders states to give "full faith and credit" to the acts of other states. Wry, original, and surprising, American Epic is a scholarly and literary tour de force.
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