: Moderating Liberalism and Common Law: Spirit and Juridical Liberty

in The Cloaking of Power

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2003 | ISBN: 9780226094823
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226094830 | DOI:
: Moderating Liberalism and Common Law: Spirit and Juridical Liberty

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This chapter focuses on the introduction of The Spirit of the Laws by Montesquieu, and the concern with both the realities and potentialities of political life partly explains why he does not openly declare the importance of judicial power for his constitutionalism, because the aims and novelty of his conception provide reasons for cloaking a proposal for reform. The intentional cloaking by Montesquieu is less confusing in light of d'Alembert's defense of the work's confusing style, which repeats the jurist's own remarks on the complexity of his writings. The conception of judicial power by Montesquieu is one beneficiary of the complicated approach to philosophy, because there are good reasons for cloaking this proposed transformation of political power. With the advancement in the argument of The Spirit of the Laws, Montesquieu develops his constitutionalism of separated powers more through praise of juridical complexity than through any other theme in his analysis of humankind and politics.

Keywords: The Spirit of the Laws; Montesquieu; judicial power; constitutionalism; style; juridical complexity

Chapter.  9202 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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