Book Launch: Constitutionalism Beyond Liberalism

The Centre for Legal Theory was pleased to organise a book launch for CLT Executive Committee Member, Associate Professor Mike Dowdle to celebrate the publication of his co-edited book, Constitutionalism Beyond Liberalism, on 9 March 2017.

From left: Professor Andrew Halpin, Director of Centre for Legal Theory and Associate Professor Mike Dowdle, Co-Editor

The book was the product of a research project funded by the MOE Academic Research Grant Tier 1 in late 2011 where leading constitutional law scholars presented papers at the Comparative Constitutional Law & State Building symposium, held at the National University of Singapore.

Guest commentator and Saw Swee Hock Centennial Professor Alec Stone Sweet, provided his perspective on the book and raised some interesting issues for co-editor, Associate Professor Mike Dowdle’s response.

Constitutionalism Beyond Liberalism bridges the gap between comparative constitutional law and constitutional theory. The volume uses the constitutional experience of countries in the global South –China, India, South Africa, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Malaysia – to transcend the liberal conceptions of constitutionalism that currently dominate contemporary comparative constitutional discourse. The alternative conceptions examined include political constitutionalism, societal constitutionalism, state-based (Rousseau-ian) conceptions of constitutionalism, and geopolitical conceptions of constitutionalism. Through these examinations, the volume seeks to expand our appreciation of the human possibilities of constitutionalism, exploring constitutionalism not merely as a restriction on the powers of government, but also as a creating collective political and social possibilities in diverse geographical and historical settings.

From left: Professor Alec Stone Sweet, Commentator, Professor James Penner, Vice Dean (Research), Associate Professor Mike Dowdle, Co-Editor and Professor Andrew Halpin, Director of Centre for Legal Theory

The book is available from Cambridge University Press.