Comparative Constitutional Law in Latin America
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Comparative Constitutional Law in Latin America

Edited by Rosalind Dixon and Tom Ginsburg

This book provides unique insights into the practice of democratic constitutionalism in one of the world’s most legally and politically significant regions. It combines contributions from leading Latin American and global scholars to provide ‘bottom up’ and ‘top down’ insights about the lessons to be drawn from the distinctive constitutional experiences of countries in Latin America. In doing so, it also draws on a rich array of legal and interdisciplinary perspectives. Ultimately, it shows both the promise of democratic constitutions as a vehicle for social, economic and political change, and the variation in the actual constitutional experiences of different countries on the ground – or the limits to constitutions as a locus for broader social change.
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Chapter 9: Modes of disestablishment in Latin America

Julieta Lemaitre

Abstract

A quick review of the news coverage in Latin America in two months of 2014, April and May, shows Catholic clergy opposing civil unions between same-sex couples in Peru (La República 2014); rallying against legal abortion in cases of rape in war in Colombia (RCN 2014); actively supporting an amendment of the Constitution of the state of Nuevo Le—n in Mexico to include the right to life from conception (Milenio 2014); campaigning against the legalization of civil unions for same-sex couples in the state of Veracruz in Mexico (Cancino 2014) and testifying against the emergency contraceptive pill before Congress in Honduras, claiming it is a form of abortion (La Prensa 2014). And yet May and April 2014 were not particularly active months for the Catholic Church, but rather a representative sample of its persistent activism against sexual and reproductive rights in Latin America, before and after the anointment of the Latin American Pope, Francis. Keywords: Catholic Church, disestablishment, sexual and reproductive rights, church–state relations, freedom of religion

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