This comparative constitutional law casebook offers a comprehensive and paradigmatic approach to the subject: it examines how the vast increase in international movements of people, capital, goods, ideas, and information affect politics in and beyond nation-states and how this influx affects the rule of law, separation of powers, and fundamental rights. Indeed, this casebook stands apart as it represents an international collaboration of legal scholars and allows for diversity of perspectives. Utilizing case excerpts from at least 40 countries across every continent, students will examine the assumptions, choices and trade-offs, strategies, and effects from decisions by constitutional courts and human rights tribunals throughout various legal systems and political contexts. Moreover, this book examines the different theories of constitutionalism and analyzes how constitutional democracies address similar issues in different institutional settings.

This third edition includes new material that speaks to current issues of pressing importance: citizenship, transnational constitutionalism, authoritarian and illiberal constitutions, collective rights and minorities, Internet censorship, religion in the public space, mass surveillance, and targeted killings. Both teachers and students will appreciate the complete coverage of complex topics within a manageable size and format. A comprehensive teacher’s manual accompanies the casebook.


Imprint: West Academic Publishing
Series: American Casebook Series
Publication Date: 07/15/2016

Norman Dorsen, New York University School of Law

Michel Rosenfeld, Cardozo Law School

Andras Sajo, New York University School of Law

Susanne Baer, University of Michigan Law School

Susanna Mancini, Cardozo Law School

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The casebook has been expanded and updated to reflect pressing new issues in comparative constitutional law. The first chapter of the casebook includes a new section on authoritarian and illiberal constitutions. Materials on transnational constitutionalism have been transferred to a new chapter, where they were expanded to cover salient constitutional aspects of various transnational legal regimes, including the UN, the EU and case law under various human rights conventions. In the chapter on horizontal separation of powers, the section on referendum has been expanded, as has the section on the scope of executive power, with particular focus on privatization. There is a new chapter on citizenship, which tackles the main conceptual and practical issues relating to the constitutional dimensions of citizenship. Discussion centers on citizenship as a rights-bearing status, the acquisition and loss of that status, and the challenges posed to the nation state citizenship paradigm by the deployment of citizenship rights in multicultural states and supra-national polities. In the chapter on dignity, privacy and personal autonomy, sections on the death penalty, suicide and euthanasia, same sex marriage and data privacy have been updated. A new section on the collective rights of minorities was added to the chapter on equality. The chapter on criminal procedure has been eliminated as the subject is mainly taught in the US and many other countries in separate courses, but pertinent material from this chapter has been integrated into the new chapter on citizenship and into the chapter on emergency powers. There is a new section on Internet censorship and free expression, and the section on freedom of the press has been expanded. In the chapter on freedom of religion and belief, a section was added on religious conduct in the public space, which focuses on recent conflicts over Muslim dress. In the chapter on constitutional guarantees of democracy, the sections on militant democracy party financing have been updated. The emergency powers chapter has added materials on the Arab Spring and expanded the section on terrorism to cover mass surveillance and targeted killings.

Learn more about this series.