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Vol 23 No 2 Feb/March 2018

Book of the Month

Cover of The UK Supreme Court Yearbook Volume 8: 2016-2017 Legal Year

The UK Supreme Court Yearbook Volume 8: 2016-2017 Legal Year

Edited by: Daniel Clarry
Price: £120.00

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The Constitution of Switzerland: A Contextual Analysis

Publication abandoned lge

ISBN13: 9781849460927
Publisher: Hart Publishing
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback
Price: Publication Abandoned

This book critically analyses the history of the Swiss Constitution and the challenges it faces today. Several factors continue to shape the Swiss Constitution; economic diversity (rural vs urban areas), religious diversity (Catholic and Protestant, later Jewish and Muslim) and linguistic diversity (German, French, Italian, Romansh, and now many different languages among the immigrant populations), and democratic constitutionalism and the international, mainly European, environment. How does the Constitution meet those challenges? Diversity is maintained by a balance of shared- and self- rule down as far as autonomous municipalities, and a consensus culture. Switzerland is the only country in the world ruled by a council of 7 peer members without a head of state. Since 1848 it has kept a stable executive which has never been replaced in its totality. Opposition to government is in the shape of the people, using democratic rights to force parliament and the executive to provide for new policies or to reject adopted legislation. There are inevitable tensions between the sovereignty of the people and the rule of law, but surrounded by kin-communities, and loyal to its neighbours in Germany, France, Austria and Italy, the Swiss have put their faith in a constitution whose challenge is to preserve and develop the nation's unique identity and sovereignty while retaining a strong interconnection with the great middle European states.