Legal Pluralism Explained: History, Theory, Consequences

ISBN : 9780190861551

Brian Z. Tamanaha
208 Pages
140 x 210 mm
Pub date
Jan 2021
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Legal pluralism involves the coexistence of multiple forms of law. This includes state law, international law, transnational law, customary law, religious law, indigenous law, and the law of distinct ethnic or cultural communities. Legal pluralism is a subject of discussion today in legal anthropology, legal sociology, legal history, comparative law, international law, transnational law, jurisprudence, and law and development scholarship. This book places legal pluralism in historical context going back to the Medieval period, describes the origins of legal pluralism in postcolonial countries and its implications today, identifies manifestations of legal pluralism within Western societies, discusses contemporary transnational legal pluralism, identifies problems with current theoretical accounts of legal pluralism, and articulates an approach to legal pluralism that avoids theoretical problems and is useful for social scientists, theorists, and law and development scholars and practitioners.


Introduction: Three Themes
Chapter One: Legal Pluralism in Historical Context
Chapter Two: Postcolonial Legal Pluralism
Chapter Three: Legal Pluralism in the West
Chapter Four: National to Transnational Legal Pluralism
Chapter Five: Abstract Versus Folk Legal Pluralism
Conclusion: Legal Pluralism Explained

About the author: 

Brian Z. Tamanaha is a jurisprudence and law and society scholar, and the author of nine books and over fifty articles and book chapters. His books have received six awards, including the 2019 IVR Book Prize for best book in legal philosophy, the 2006 Dennis Leslie Mahoney Prize in Legal Theory, and the 2002 Herbert Jacob Book Prize in Law and Society. Altogether his publications have been translated into eleven languages. He has delivered eight named lectures around the globe, including the Kobe Memorial Lecture in Tokyo and the Julius Stone Address in Sydney. He spent a year in residence as Member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. His work has been the subject of four published symposia, and his books have been reviewed in many venues, including the Harvard Law Review, Michigan Law Review, Cambridge Law Journal, Law and Society Review, and Law and History Review. He is the John S, Lehmann University Professor at Washington University School of Law.

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