Ubiquitous Law explores the possibility of understanding the law in dissociation from the State while, at the same time, establishing the conditions of meaningful communication between various legalities. This book argues that the enquiry into the legal has been biased by the implicit or explicit presupposition of the State's exclusivity to a claim to legality as well as the tendency to make the enquiry into the law the task of experts, who purport to be able to represent the legal community's commitments in an authoritative manner. Very worryingly, the experts' point of view then becomes constitutive of the law and parasitic to and distortive of people's commitments. Ubiquitous Law counter-suggests a new methodology for legal theory, which will not be based on rigid epistemological and normative assumptions but rather on self-reflection and mutual understanding and critique, so as to establish acceptable differences on the basis of a commonality.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Perspective, critique and pluralism in legal theory; Orthodoxies and heterodoxies of legal pluralism; On the theoretical groundwork of legal pluralism; Interperspectival critical legal theory; The contours of institutionalised legal discourse; Shared normative experiences and the space for legal pluralism; On the chronology (and topology) of the legal; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.
'...it provides a wealth of insightful, scholarly and wide-ranging discussion. It deserves to be read by anyone interested in the now vitally important task of exploring the nature of legal pluralism as a contemporary phenomenon, and as a key organizing idea for current theoretical inquiries about law.' Law and Politics Book Review ’This excellent book may scare off many traditional and mentally-enslaved lawyers by proposing that law is ’ubiquitous’. But we cannot sit on the fence; we have to make decisions, all the time. Are such decisions adequate and ’just’? This book’s case for wider acceptance of the methodologies of legal pluralism is exceedingly well argued.’ Social & Legal Studies ’Melissaris has made a sophisticated and substantial contribution to our understanding of the legal and normative plurality of the present. The book deserves to be widely read.’ Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence