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Rule By Law: The Politics of Courts in Authoritarian Regimes Paperback – May 8, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0521720410 ISBN-10: 0521720419 Edition: 1st

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Rule By Law: The Politics of Courts in Authoritarian Regimes + Judicial Review in New Democracies: Constitutional Courts in Asian Cases + The Rights Revolution: Lawyers, Activists, and Supreme Courts in Comparative Perspective
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 1 edition (May 8, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521720419
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521720410
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #882,997 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"...succinct but authoritative...This convincing assessment is therefore an incredibly important contribution to the literature in a rather neglected subject."
--ASIL UN21 Interest Group Newsletter [ISSUE #39: May 2009]

"...students of law and society, comparative politics, and regime transition will value the book for both its breadth and detail."
CHOICE, J.D. Marshall, Carthage College

"Every chapter of this book makes an analytically sophisticated argument about authoritarianism and law. Since more than half of all states can be characterized as authoritarian or semiauthoritarian, this volume provides frames of analysis and empirical examples that can stimulate and guide future research, and move the study of judicial politics in exciting new directions.
Perspectives on Politics, Lisa Hajjar, University of California- Santa Barbara

Book Description

This volume brings together leading scholars in comparative judicial politics to consider the causes and consequences of judicial empowerment in authoritarian regimes. Drawing on empirical and theoretical insights from every major region of the world, this volume advances our understanding of judicial politics in authoritarian regimes.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Enjolras TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 24, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recently took a comparative constitutional law class at my law school. Even though my school is one of the best for international law, I felt it really lacked depth when we discussed courts in illiberal countries like China. Frankly, this book was much more useful than that class.

I purchased this book because I am currently doing research on judicial systems in Asia under authoritarian control. The articles provide both a theoretical framework for how courts operate in such environments and a selection of case studies from all over the world. The overarching theme is that authoritarian regimes in many cases actually provide an illiberal form of rule of law for their courts, rather than simply treating them as a facade. I thought the chapters on Singapore (Silverstein), Chile (Hilbank), Egypt (Moustafa), and and Turkey (Shambayati) were particularly insightful and made me look at courts and judges in these regimes differently.

On a personal note, I wish the book had included one more chapter looking at another judicial system in Asia. Given recent events last year, a chapter on Pakistan would have been very interesting. I also think the book would have benefitted from a chapter exploring the patronage and corruption that authoritarian leaders in Southeast Asia used to influence judges, such as Suharto in Indonesia or Mahathir in Malaysia.

Overall, this is a great book and I hope it encourages more research in this field.
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