legalism anthropology and history

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Legalism Anthropology And History

Author : Paul Dresch
ISBN : 9780191641473
Genre : Law
File Size : 23. 17 MB
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Law and law-like institutions are visible in human societies very distant from each other in time and space. When it comes to observing and analysing such social constructs historians, anthropologists, and lawyers run into notorious difficulties in how to conceptualize them. Do they conform to a single category of 'law'? How are divergent understandings of the nature and purpose of law to be described and explained? Such questions reach to the heart of philosophical attempts to understand the nature of law, but arise whenever we are confronted by law-like practices and concepts in societies not our own. In this volume leading historians and anthropologists with an interest in law gather to analyse the nature and meaning of law in diverse societies. They start from the concept of legalism, taken from the anthropologist Lloyd Fallers, whose 1960s work on Africa engaged, unusually, with jurisprudence. The concept highlights appeal to categories and rules. The degree to which legalism in this sense informs people's lives varies within and between societies, and over time, but it can colour equally both 'simple' and 'complex' law. Breaking with recent emphases on 'practice', nine specialist contributors explore, in a wide-ranging set of cases, the place of legalism in the workings of social life. The essays make obvious the need to question our parochial common sense where ideals of moral order at other times and places differ from those of modern North Atlantic governance. State-centred law, for instance, is far from a 'central case'. Legalism may be 'aspirational', connecting people to wider visions of morality; duty may be as prominent a theme as rights; and rulers from thirteenth-century England to sixteenth-century Burma appropriate, as much they impose, a vision of justice as consistency. The use of explicit categories and rules does not reduce to simple questions of power. The cases explored range from ancient Asia Minor to classical India, and from medieval England and France to Saharan oases and southern Arabia. In each case they assume no knowledge of the society or legal system discussed. The volume will appeal not only to historians and anthropologists with an interest in law, but to students of law engaged in legal theory, for the light it sheds on the strengths and limitations of abstract legal philosophy.

Legalism

Author : Paul Dresch
ISBN : 9780191068324
Genre : Law
File Size : 68. 90 MB
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Mainstream historians in recent decades have often treated formal categories and rules as something to be 'used' by individuals, as one might use a stick or stone, and the gains of an earlier legal history are often needlessly set aside. Anthropologists, meanwhile, have treated rules as analytic errors and categories as an imposition by outside powers or by analysts, leaving a very thin notion of 'practice' as the stuff of social life. Philosophy of an older vintage, as well as the work of scholars such as Charles Taylor, provides fresh approaches when applied imaginatively to cases beyond the traditional ground of modern Europe and North America. Not only are different kinds of rules and categories open to examination, but the very notion of a rule can be explored more deeply. This volume approaches rules and categories as constitutive of action and hence of social life, but also as providing means of criticism and imagination. A general theoretical framework is derived from analytical philosophy, from Wittgenstein to his critics and beyond, and from recent legal thinkers such as Schauer and Waldron. Case-studies are presented from a broad range of periods and regions, from Amazonia via northern Chad, Tibet, and medieval Russia to the scholarly worlds of Roman law, Islam, and Classical India. As the third volume in the Legalism series, this collection draws on common themes that run throughout the first two volumes: Legalism: Anthropology and History and Legalism: Community and Justice, consolidating them in a framework that suggests a new approach to rule-bound systems.

Legalism

Author : Fernanda Pirie
ISBN : 9780198716570
Genre : Law
File Size : 47. 35 MB
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That law is, or should be, related to justice generally goes without saying; that communities are the basis for (or objects of) laws is also easily assumed; and notable theories of justice explicitly or implicitly elide the two. In this volume historians and anthropologists use empirical examples to unpick conceptual knots formed by law, justice, and community, asking how these relations appear in practice, and how fundamental they are.

The Anthropology Of Law

Author : Fernanda Pirie
ISBN : 9780199696840
Genre : Law
File Size : 52. 29 MB
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Questions about the nature of law, its relationship with custom, and the distinctive form of legal rules, categories, and reasoning, are placed at the centre of this introduction to the anthropology of law. It brings empirical scholarship within the scope of legal philosophy, while suggesting new avenues of inquiry for the anthropologist. Going beyond the functional and instrumental aspects of law that underlie traditional ethnographic studies of order and conflict resolution, The Anthropology of Law considers contemporary debates on human rights and new forms of property, but also delves into the rich corpus of texts and codes studied by legal historians, classicists, and orientalist scholars. Studies of the great legal systems of ancient China, India, and the Islamic world, unjustly neglected by anthropologists, are examined alongside forms of law created on their peripheries. The coutumes of medieval Europe, the codes drawn up by tribal groups in Tibet and the Yemen, village laws on both sides of the Mediterranean, and the intricate codes of saga in Iceland provide rich empirical detail for the author's analysis of the cross-cultural importance of the form of law, as text or rule, and the relative marginality of its functions as an instrument of government or foundation of social order. Carefully-selected examples shed new light upon the interrelations and distinctions between law, custom, and justice. Gradually an argument unfolds concerning the tensions between legalistic thought and argument, and the ideological or aspirational claims to embody justice, morality, and religious truth which lie at the heart of what we think of as law.

The Confucian Legalist State

Author : Dingxin Zhao
ISBN : 9780190463618
Genre : History
File Size : 83. 1 MB
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In The Confucian-Legalist State, Dingxin Zhao offers a radically new analysis of Chinese imperial history from the eleventh century BCE to the fall of the Qing dynasty. This study first uncovers the factors that explain how, and why, China developed into a bureaucratic empire under the Qin dynasty in 221 BCE. It then examines the political system that crystallized during the Western Han dynasty, a system that drew on China's philosophical traditions of Confucianism and Legalism. Despite great changes in China's demography, religion, technology, and socioeconomic structures, this Confucian-Legalist political system survived for over two millennia. Yet, it was precisely because of the system's resilience that China, for better or worse, did not develop industrial capitalism as Western Europe did, notwithstanding China's economic prosperity and technological sophistication beginning with the Northern Song dynasty. In examining the nature of this political system, Zhao offers a new way of viewing Chinese history, one that emphasizes the importance of structural forces and social mechanisms in shaping historical dynamics. As a work of historical sociology, The Confucian-Legalist State aims to show how the patterns of Chinese history were not shaped by any single force, but instead by meaningful activities of social actors which were greatly constrained by, and at the same time reproduced and modified, the constellations of political, economic, military, and ideological forces. This book thus offers a startling new understanding of long-term patterns of Chinese history, one that should trigger debates for years to come among historians, political scientists, and sociologists.

The Church Of England And Divorce In The Twentieth Century

Author : Ann Sumner Holmes
ISBN : 9781315408484
Genre : History
File Size : 57. 74 MB
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Attitudes towards divorce have changed considerably over the past two centuries. As society has moved away from a Biblical definition of marriage as an indissoluble union, to that of an individual and personal relationship, secular laws have evolved as well. Using unpublished sources and previously inaccessible private collections, Holmes explores the significant role the Church of England has played in these changes, as well as the impact this has had on ecclesiastical policies. This timely study will be relevant to ongoing debates about the meaning and nature of marriage, including the theological doctrines and ecclesiastical policies underlying current debates on same-sex marriage.

A History Of Modern Yemen

Author : Paul Dresch
ISBN : 052179482X
Genre : History
File Size : 61. 42 MB
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An accessible and fast moving account of twentieth-century Yemeni history.

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