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Cultures of Political Freedom in the German Lands c. 1300-1800
Hundreds of rural communities tasted political freedom in the Holy Roman Empire. For shorter or longer periods, villagers managed local affairs without subjection to territorial overlords. In this first book-length study, Beat Kümin focuses on the five case studies of Gochsheim and Sennfeld (in present-day Bavaria), Sulzbach and Soden (Hesse) and Gersau (Switzerland). Adopting a comparative perspective across the late medieval and early modern periods, the analysis of multiple sources reveals distinct extents of rural self-government, the forging of communalized confessions and an enduring attachment to the empire. Negotiating inner tensions as well as mounting centralization pressures, Reichsdörfer provide privileged insights into rural micro-political cultures while their stories resonate with resurgent desires for greater local autonomy in Europe today.
Law, Culture and Practice
For a long time, Africa has 'lagged' behind global advances in transparency, but there are now significant developments on the continent. In a ground-breaking book, Access to Information in Africa brings together for the first time a collection of African academics and practitioners to contribute to the fast-growing body of scholarship that is now accumulating internationally. This is therefore an African account of progress made and setbacks suffered, but also an account of challenges and obstacles that confront both policy-makers and practitioners. These challenges must be overcome if greater public access to information is to make a distinctive, positive contribution to the continent’s democratic and socio-economic future. This book offers a necessarily multi-dimensional perspective on the state of ATI in African jurisdictions and the emerging, new praxis - a praxis that will entail a genuine domestication of the right of access to information on the continent.
The themes of nation-building, post-colonial modernization and constitution-making, post-communist return to the rule of law and constitutional reconstruction, the global expansion of judicial power and judicial activism by the constitutional courts are usually studied by different specialists with somewhat narrow foci. This book is a unique and ambitious interdisciplinary attempt at the integration of these related fields, and offers a timely theoretical synthesis of the most important global constitutional trends in the last half-century. These essays by prominent authorities on different subjects and geographical areas offer a comprehensive, comparative view of the most important constitutional developments of two eras, bringing together the transplantation of the constitutional pattern of the nation-state and the current wave of globalization of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Contributors are: S.A.Arjomand, Nathan J. Brown, Ruth Gavison, Julian Go, Keyvan Tabari, Heinz Klug, Jill Cottrell, Yash Ghai, László Sólyom, Jacek Kurczewski, Anders Fogelklou, Grażyna Skąpska, Dieter Grimm, Kim Lane Scheppele, Ruth Rubio Marín , and Dicle Kogacioğlu.