Comparative Law and Socio-legal Studies

Annelise Riles

in The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law

Published in print November 2006 | ISBN: 9780199296064
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Law

 Comparative Law and Socio-legal Studies

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The article begins by describing some shared ancestral figures of both comparative law and socio-legal studies, and the conundrums they have left to both fields. It then turns to the divisions between socio-legal studies and comparative law. It qualifies this account of disciplinary division with a description of two important areas of research — non-European comparative law and legal pluralism. The discussion describes the new rapprochement between the fields, and outlines a series of foci of active debate. These include the nature of legal pluralism under conditions of globalization, the character of legal culture, the causes and prospects of legal transplants, and the consequences of legal harmonization. From this point of view, the article outlines a number of points of general agreement between comparative lawyers and socio-legal scholars in hopes that the debate on these particular points can now be put to rest.

Keywords: comparative law; socio-legal studies; legal pluralism; globalization; legal culture

Article.  17236 words. 

Subjects: Law ; Comparative Law

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