Cultural Conflicts *

Annelise Riles

in Law and Anthropology

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780199580910
Published online February 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191723025 | DOI:

Series: Current Legal Issues

 Cultural Conflicts *

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It is no secret that there is widespread dissatisfaction with the prevailing doctrinal approaches to conflict of laws in the United States. The ‘methodologies’ for resolving conflicts problems that compete for judicial attention in the United States coexist uneasily in the Second Restatement, since none has managed to garner sufficient support, and each has been the subject of extensive scholarly and judicial criticism. This chapter suggests that the general dissatisfaction with conflicts as a field in the United States, and its failure to live up to its larger promise, may stem in part from the fact that doctrines and theories fail to address what our moral intuition tells us that conflict problems are about. It takes as its primary example a case of cultural conflict between Native American legal norms and US state and federal law. The conflict between Native American and settler culture is foundational to the political and legal system of which US conflicts is a part, and is arguably the silent background against which questions of the politics of cultural recognition are entertained, defined, or rejected in US cultural, political, and legal life.

Keywords: anthropology; cultural conflicts; US law; federal law; Native Americans; settlers

Chapter.  20043 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Law

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