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Constitutions in Crisis : Political Violence and the Rule of Law - John E. Finn

Constitutions in Crisis

Political Violence and the Rule of Law

Hardcover

Published: 27th December 1990
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In this compelling study, which unites the fields of constitutional theory and comparative politics, John E. Finn examines how the efforts of two western liberal democracies, the United Kingdom and the Federal Republic of Germany, to cope with domestic terrorism threatens their constitutional integrity. Finn argues first that widespread political violence challenges the presuppositions of constitutional authority in any liberal democracy, namely that reason and deliberation, and not passion or will, can be the basis of political community. Terrorism therefore constitutes both a specific type of constitutional emergency and a challenge to the more general enterprise of constitutional maintenance. He then proceeds to review the efforts of the United Kingdom and Germany to control political violence through emergency legislation, and considers to what extent such measures comport with the demands of constitutionalism and the rule of law.

"[An] exciting study of how constitutional systems cope with political violence....Finn advances his argument not only persuasively and with great clarity but also with passion."--Times Higher Education Supplement "A very useful study of constitution-maintenance in extreme situations....Searching scholarship and alertness to the terrible distorting demands of political self-preservation are especially prominent here. Recommended for all college and university collections as well as libraries seeking to serve informed general readers."--Choice "Well written and soundly researched. A first class study, on a comparative basis, of anti-terrorist legislation in western democracies."--John F. Murphy, School of Law, Villanova University "This is an insightful book that moves gracefully from fact to theory and tells some dramatic stories in between. At a time when comparativists are once again recognizing the importance of institutions and constitutions, this book is an especially important contribution to the study of politics."--Nancy Bermeo, Princeton University "Finn's important book is in the tradition of Corwin, Rossiter, Friedrich, but he has asked questions they left unresolved. A provocative work, this will be the leading study in the field for years to come."--Walter F. Murphy, Princeton University "[An] exciting study of how constitutional systems cope with political violence....Finn advances his argument not only persuasively and with great clarity but also with passion."--Times Higher Education Supplement "A very useful study of constitution-maintenance in extreme situations....Searching scholarship and alertness to the terrible distorting demands of political self-preservation are especially prominent here. Recommended for all college and university collections as well as libraries seeking to serve informed general readers."--Choice "Well written and soundly researched. A first class study, on a comparative basis, of anti-terrorist legislation in western democracies."--John F. Murphy, School of Law, Villanova University "This is an insightful book that moves gracefully from fact to theory and tells some dramatic stories in between. At a time when comparativists are once again recognizing the importance of institutions and constitutions, this book is an especially important contribution to the study of politics."--Nancy Bermeo, Princeton University "Finn's important book is in the tradition of Corwin, Rossiter, Friedrich, but he has asked questions they left unresolved. A provocative work, this will be the leading study in the field for years to come."--Walter F. Murphy, Princeton University "Finn's three part study is a particularly worthy contribution to the quest for solutions within the liberal/analytical tradition."--Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly "Enlightening and substantive....The value of Finn's book is that it provides for those not squeamish about thinking in terms of universals, and who are committed to constitutional maintenance, a means by which to retain that commitment, even in the face of constitutional crisis. In the process, following Finn, they will neither lose the courage of their convictions nor inadvertently jeopardize their constitutional government as did the Weimar republicans. Finn has thus provided a valuable prop with which to help shore up constitutional democracy at its most critically vulnerable moments."--The Review of Politics "The detailed discussion of how British regulations since the 1920s have worked is informative and impressive....Constitutions in Crisis is a fair-minded, careful, illuminating, and well-written book that will deeply interest a wide range of political scientists--specialists in constitutional law, political theory, comparative politics, and terrorist studies."--American Political Science Review

Introductionp. 3
Constitutional Maintenance and the Legal Control of Political Violencep. 11
A Theory of Constitutional Maintenance and Constitutional Crisesp. 13
Afterword: Constitutive Principles and Right Answersp. 44
Constitutional Maintenance and Dissolution in Northern Irelandp. 47
Constitutional Dissolution and Reconstruction in Northern Irelandp. 51
Political Violence and Antiterrorism Legislation in Great Britain and Northern Irelandp. 84
Constitutional Maintenance and Reconstruction in Germanyp. 135
Constitutional Dissolution in the Weimar Republicp. 139
Constitutional Reconstruction, Militant Democracy, and Antiterrorism Legislation in the Federal Republic of Germanyp. 179
Conclusionp. 219
Notesp. 222
Selected Referencesp. 255
Indexp. 265
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780195057386
ISBN-10: 0195057384
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 27th December 1990
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.91 x 17.32  x 2.39
Weight (kg): 0.63