Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Schorr on Legal Transplantation in the Colonial Context

Questioning Harmonization: Legal Transplantation in the Colonial Context is a new essay by David Schorr, Tel Aviv University, Buchmann Faculty of Law. It appears in Theoretical Inquiries in Law Forum (2009). Here's the abstract:
This comment on an article by Ron Harris and Michael Crystal argues that on the theoretical as well as the historical level, there is no reason to assume that a legal system, like a sort of organism, wishes to replicate itself or propogate its genes, nor that it will typically do so, even in the supposedly hospitable environment of colonial relations. While legal transplantation in the British Empire was rampant, it was also multidirectional, with jurisdictions from around the world borrowing freely from each other, from the legal systems of other imperial territories as well as from outside the empire. More generally, the inherent complexity of legislating, even in the colonial context, makes harmonization an unlikely prospect in any empire.