Laws and Societies in Global Contexts: Contemporary Approaches

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Cambridge University Press, Jan 31, 2013 - Law - 422 pages
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This text seeks to situate sociolegal studies in a global context. Law and society scholarship in the United States and elsewhere typically assumes one legal system and one society and explores the relationship between them. Such a narrow endeavor perpetuates a Western international relations model that too often conflates law, culture, and the nation-state. A more global sociolegal perspective engages with multiple laws and societies within and across national borders and recognizes diverse sociolegal systems based on very different historical and cultural traditions, interacting on multiple local, national, and global levels. This more global perspective also reveals an array of transnational issues including regional conflicts, genocide, mass immigration, environmental degradation, and climate change that have consistently defied resolution via conventional international system of governance. The approach to global legal pluralism outlined here seeks to provide a framework for envisioning new global governance regimes that move beyond state-based solutions to deal with trenchant transnational challenges.

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Interconnected Themes and Challenges
Law as Multicultural Artifact
List of Suggested Readings
Producing Legal Knowledge
Decolonizing Legal Knowledge
Reimagining Legal Geographies
Securing Peoples
Reracializing the World
The Enduring Relevance of Law?

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About the author (2013)

Eve Darian-Smith is Professor in Global Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She holds degrees in law (Melbourne) and sociocultural anthropology (Harvard, Chicago). Her research engages with issues of legal pluralism and explores the changing role of law and legal institutions in the context of globalization. Her first book, Bridging Divides: The Channel Tunnel and English Legal Identity in the New Europe, won the Law and Society Association Herbert Jacob Book Prize. Subsequent books include Laws of the Postcolonial; New Capitalists: Law, Politics and Identity Surrounding Casino Gaming on Native American Land; and most recently Religion, Race, Rights: Landmarks in the History of Anglo-American Law. She is on various editorial boards and is a former associate editor of American Ethnologist and Law and Society Review.

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