Research Handbooks in Comparative Law series
Edited by Pier Giuseppe Monateri
Chapter 1: Methods in Comparative Law: An Intellectual Overview
Pier Giuseppe Monateri 1. INTRODUCTION In this chapter I explore the dominant paradigm – meant as a purposive system of thought – which has inspired my research in the ﬁeld of Comparative Law. Tracing back the roots of my intellectual path as a comparatist scholar, I meet with a speciﬁc methodology known as the ‘formant approach’. Consequently, in the following pages I move from this kind of approach to revise the standard comprehension of comparativism in general and comparative law in particular. To reach my goal, I divide the chapter into two sections. The ﬁrst is a brief summary of the basic tenets of this kind of approach to Law, in order to introduce the reader to the steps to be followed in using this method. The second is devoted to applying the formant approach with the aim of both dismantling the ideological substrate veiled by conventional views and discovering the deeper potentialities of Comparative Law. This kind of ‘aletheic’ operation, meant as the generative source of the interpretative tradition, allows me to discuss and to reassess three main issues: 1. 2. 3. the nature of Comparative Law as academic discipline and its aim of providing tools for global governance of the legal ﬁeld in today’s world; the process of deﬁnition of Legal Origins and law reforms made by the World Bank; the Jurisprudential implications of this approach. 2. THE BASIC METHOD OF THE ‘FORMANTS APPROACH’ IN COMPARATIVE LAW The theory of legal formants, also known as the dynamic approach...
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