Edited by Anthony F. Lang and Antje Wiener
Chapter 8: Liberal theory
Liberal political and legal theory has enjoyed a remarkable resurgence since the mid-twentieth century. The emergence of global constitutional thought is closely coupled with its rise to prominence. Yet many theorists of global constitutionalism are wary of acknowledging their ‘liberal’ commitments. This chapter makes the case that at the deepest level of interpretation, prominent theorists of global constitutionalism are ‘liberals’ in all but name. Through a double critique of the liberal foundations of their thought, an argument is advanced that there are unanswered questions about the best way of understanding and grounding a global constitutional order beyond liberal theory.
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