This book examines the influence of constitutional legal paradigms upon the political stability and viability of states. It contributes to the literature in the field by focussing on how constitutional flexibility may have led to the rise of 'successful' states and to the decline of 'unsuccessful' states, by promoting stability. Divided into two parts, the book considers theories of the rise and fall of civilizations and individual states, explains the concept of hard and soft constitutions and applies this concept to different types of state models. A series of international case studies in the second part of the book identifies the key dynamics in legal, political and economic history and includes the UK, US, New Zealand and Eastern Europe.
Noel Cox holds the position of Head of the Department of Law and Criminology at Aberystwyth University. He was Professor of Constitutional Law at the Auckland University of Technology to 2010, and was Head of the Department of Law 2004-2008. He received the Vice-Chancellor's Excellence Award for Research, in 2002. He spent the summer of 2003-2004 as a Visiting Fellow, Faculty of Law, The Australian National University, Canberra, and the latter part of 2006 at Wolfson College, the University of Cambridge. He was elected a Visiting Fellow at St Edmund's College, the University of Cambridge, in 2009.
'This is an extremely interesting analysis of the role that states' constitutions play in determining the success or failure of those states themselves. The writer's grasp of public law, international law and political and economic science, with their historical foundations and development, and his ability to weave all these into a convincing whole is most impressive and make for an absorbing read.' Derek Oulton, Magdalene College, Cambridge, UK 'Bringing to bear his expertise in constitutional law in the Commonwealth, the monarchy, religious and constitutional history from the mediaeval to the modern periods, and theories concerning the development and decline of states, Professor Cox offers both an eclectic treasure-trove of knowledge and a fully argued thesis about factors affecting the shaping and success of states. As a challenge to currently popular, doctrinaire, liberal assumptions about what makes a good state, this book will spark debate, and deserves to be read by anyone interested in the nature and life of states from the perspectives of legal, historical, social, economic or political theory.' David Feldman, University of Cambridge, UK