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Paradigms in Modern European Comparative Law

A History

By: Balázs Fekete
Media of Paradigms in Modern European Comparative Law
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Published: 20-05-2021
Format: Hardback
Edition: 1st
Extent: 240
ISBN: 9781509946921
Imprint: Hart Publishing
Series: European Academy of Legal Theory Series
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
RRP: £70.00
Online price : £63.00
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Loren Epson

About Paradigms in Modern European Comparative Law

This book uses the philosophy of Thomas Kuhn to provide a new vision of the development of European comparative law that will challenge and inspire scholars in the field.

With the 'empathic' use of some ideas from Kuhn's theories on the history of science – paradigm, paradigm-shift, puzzle-solving research and incommensurability – the book rethinks the modern history of European comparative law from the late 19th century to the modern day.

It argues that three major paradigms determine modern comparative law:
- historical and comparative jurisprudence,
- droit comparé, and
- post-World War II comparative law.

It concludes that contemporary methodological trends are not signs of a paradigm-shift toward a postmodern and culturalist understanding of comparative law, but that the new approach spreads the idea of methodological plurality.

Table Of Contents


Introduction: Scope and Subject
I. The History of Comparative Law and a History of Comparative Law
II. The Dominance of Descriptive Linearity
III. Comparative Law as a Discipline and the Application of Comparative Methods in Law
IV. Ancient or Modern History of Comparative Law Thinking
V. Comparative Law and Comparative Constitutional Law
VI. A Mezzo-Perspective Approach

1. The History of Comparative Law and Kuhn's Oeuvre
I. Studying Science as a Historical Phenomenon: Some Preliminaries
II. Applying Kuhn's Legacy to Understand the History of Comparative Legal Studies
III. Lessons from Kuhn in the Historiography of Legal Scholarship

2. Historical-Comparative Jurisprudence
I. Introduction: The Centuries-Long Pre-Paradigm Period and the Rise of the First Paradigm
II. Prologue: The Modern Precursors and the Pre-Paradigm Period
III. General Background: The Rise of Positivism and the Idea of Evolution
IV. Historical and Comparative Jurisprudence – The Emergence of the Paradigm in England
V. From Ethnologische Jurisprudenz to Vergleichende Rechtswissenschaft – The Birth of a Paradigm in Germany
VI. The First Paradigm of Modern Comparative Law: A Summary

3. The Paradigm of Droit Comparé
I. Fin-de-siècle Atmosphere
II. A New Wave of Institutionalisation
III. The 1900 Paris Congress of Comparative Law
IV. The Establishment of the New Paradigm
V. The Development of the Paradigm – Functionalism, Global Law and Skepticism
VI. Characteristics of the Second Paradigm

4. The Third Paradigm – Post-World War II Comparative Law
I. Introductory Remarks: The New World Order and Comparative Law Scholarship
II. The Taxonomy of the World's Legal Orders
III. The Renewal of Comparative Law Methodology – The Victory of Functionalism
IV. The Third Paradigm

5. New Trends in Contemporary Comparative Law: Toward a Paradigm Shift?
I. A Changing Scholarly Landscape
II. A Cultural Turn in Comparative Law?
III. The Decline of Methodological Exclusivity in Comparative Law Thinking
IV. Paradigm Shift in Comparative Law?

Concluding Thoughts
I. On the Validity of This Research, with Special Regard to the Relevance of Kuhn's Ideas
II. On the Utility of Having a Single Book on the History of Modern European Comparative Law
III. On Recent Perspectives of Comparative Law


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