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Vol 22 No 10 Oct/Nov 2017

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Lindley & Banks on Partnership

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The Alchemists: Questioning Our Faith in Courts as Democracy-Builders


ISBN13: 9781108417945
Published: November 2017
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £95.00



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Can courts really build democracy in a state emerging from authoritarian rule? This book presents a searching critique of the contemporary global model of democracy-building for post-authoritarian states, arguing that it places excessive reliance on courts.

Since 1945, both constitutional courts and international human rights courts have been increasingly perceived as alchemists, capable of transmuting the base materials of a nascent democracy into the gold of a functioning democratic system. By charting the development of this model, and critically analysing the evidence and claims for courts as democracy-builders, this book argues that the decades-long trend toward ever greater reliance on courts is based as much on faith as fact, and can often be counter-productive.

Offering a sustained corrective to unrealistic perceptions of courts as democracy-builders, the book points the way toward a much needed rethinking of democracy-building models and a re-evaluation of how we employ courts in this role.

Subjects:
Constitutional and Administrative Law
Contents:
Preface: our court obsession
Acknowledgments
Table of Cases
List of Abbreviations
Introduction: an onerous role for courts as democracy-builders
1. The core concept: democratisation
2. The rise and limits of constitutional courts as democracy-builders
3. The rise and limits of human rights courts as democracy-builders
4. 'Democratisation jurisprudence': framing courts' democracy-building roles
5. Domestic democratisation jurisprudence in action: Brazil since 1988
6. Regional democratisation jurisprudence: shaping democracy from outside
7. What Should Courts Do in a Young Democracy? Rethinking Our Approach
Concluding thoughts: moving beyond our court obsession
Bibliography
Index.

Series: Cambridge Studies in Constitutional Law

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Dimensions of Dignity: The Theory and Practice of Modern Constitutional Law ISBN 9781107084285
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Balancing Constitutional Rights: The Origins and Meanings of Postwar Legal Discourse ISBN 9781107622487
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£22.99
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Published July 2015
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£72.00
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£67.00
Bills of Rights in the Common Law ISBN 9781107680630
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The Guardian of the Constitution: Hans Kelsen and Carl Schmitt on the Limits of Constitutional Law
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Lawyering for the Rule of Law: Government Lawyers and the Rise of Judicial Power in Israel ISBN 9781107038998
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