Research Handbook on Legal Pluralism and EU Law
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Research Handbook on Legal Pluralism and EU Law

Edited by Gareth Davies and Matej Avbelj

The Research Handbook on Legal Pluralism and EU Law explores the diversity of phenomenon of overlapping legal systems within the European Union, the nature of their interactions, and how they deal with the difficult question of the legal hierarchy between them. The contributors reflect on the history, sociology and legal scholarship on constitutional and legal pluralism, and develop this further in the light of the challenges currently facing the EU.
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Chapter 23: Pluralism then and now

Neil Walker


This Afterword examines the changing nature of the legal pluralist debate as regards the European Union, and how it reflects the developing social and political context. In the 1990s, the pluralist question came to the surface in response to the differing attitudes of the Court of Justice and national constitutional judges over the question of final judicial authority in the EU. The debate was a product of supranational strength and national anxiety in the face of that strength. Today, the EU stands in a less sure position, buffeted by a number of economic, social and political crises. The pluralist debate has broadened to take account of these crises. No longer confined to the judicial sphere, its continuing relevance depends on its connecting these legal questions to broader questions of the very sustainability of the EU’s deeper political pluralism.

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