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Constitutions: Writing Nations, Reading Difference

Constitutions: Writing Nations, Reading Difference (Hardback)

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Bringing a postcolonial perspective to UK constitutional debates and including a detailed and comparative engagement with the constitutions of Britain's ex-colonies, this book is an original reflection upon the relationship between the written and the unwritten constitution. Can a nation have an unwritten constitution? While written constitutions both found and define modern nations, Britain is commonly regarded as one of the very few exceptions to this rule. Drawing on a range of theories concerning writing, law and violence (from Robert Cover to Jacques Derrida), Constitutions makes a theoretical intervention into conventional constitutional analyses by problematizing the notion of a 'written constitution' on which they are based. Situated within the frame of the former British empire, this book deconstructs the conventional opposition between the 'margins' and the 'centre', as well as between the 'written' and 'unwritten', by paying very close, detailed attention to the constitutional texts under consideration.

Pryor argues that Britain's 'unwritten' constitution and 'immemorial' common law only take on meaning in a relation of difference with the written constitutions of its former colonies. These texts, in turn, draw on this pre-literate origin in order to legitimize themselves. The 'unwritten' constitution of Britain can therefore be located and dislocated in postcolonial written constitutions. Constitutions is an excellent addition to the bookshelves of all students of the philosophy of law, political theory, constitutional and administrative law and jurisprudence.

LawInternational lawInternational law of transport, communications & commerceInternational communications & telecommunications lawLawInternational lawInternational law of transport, communications & commerceInternational maritime lawLawInternational lawInternational law of transport, communications & commerceInternational space & aerospace lawLawInternational lawInternational law of transport, communications & commerceTransnational commercial lawLawInternational lawInternational law reportsLawInternational lawPrivate international law & conflict of lawsLawInternational lawPublic international lawDiplomatic lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational criminal lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational economic & trade lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational environmental lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational human rights lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational humanitarian lawLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational law of territory & statehoodLawInternational lawPublic international lawInternational organisations & institutionsLawInternational lawPublic international lawJurisdiction & immunitiesLawInternational lawPublic international lawLaw of the seaLawInternational lawPublic international lawTreaties & other sources of international lawLawInternational lawSettlement of international disputesInternational arbitrationLawInternational lawSettlement of international disputesInternational courts & proceduresLawJurisprudence & general issuesJurisprudence & philosophy of lawLawJurisprudence & general issuesSystems of lawCommon lawLawLaws of Specific jurisdictionsConstitutional & administrative lawElection lawLawLaws of Specific jurisdictionsConstitutional & administrative lawParliamentary & legislative practicePhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesPhilosophy TheorySocial & political philosophy Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd Publication Date: 09/08/2007 ISBN-13: 9780415431927  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
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Judith Pryor is an historian at the Waitangi Tribunal, New Zealand

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