Law, Orientalism and Postcolonialism: The Jurisdiction of the Lotus-Eaters, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Law, Orientalism and Postcolonialism

The Jurisdiction of the Lotus-Eaters, 1st Edition

By Piyel Haldar


200 pages

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Paperback: 9780415962247
pub: 2007-12-13
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Hardback: 9780415962230
pub: 2007-12-06
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pub: 2007-12-05
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Focusing on the ‘problem’ of pleasure Law, Orientalism and Postcolonialism uncovers the organizing principles by which the legal subject was colonized. That occidental law was complicit in colonial expansion is obvious. What remains to be addressed, however, is the manner in which law and legal discourse sought to colonize individual subjects as subjects of law. It was through the permission of pleasure that modern Western subjects were refined and domesticated. Legally sanctioned outlets for private and social enjoyment instilled and continue to instil within the individual tight self-control over behaviour. There are, however, states of behaviour considered to be repugnant to, and in excess of, modern codes of civility. Drawing on a broad range of literature, (including classical jurisprudence, eighteenth century Orientalist scholarship, early travel literature, and nineteenth century debates surrounding the rule of law), yet concentrating on the experience of British India, the argument here is that such excesses were deemed to be an Oriental phenomenon. Through the encounter with the Orient and with the fantasy of its excess, Piyel Haldar concludes, the relationship between the subject and the law was transformed, and must therefore be re-assessed.


Recommended by CHOICE (September 2008 Vol. 46 No. 01)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: The Colonization of the Legal Subject 2. Plato and Orientalism 3. The Sultan’s Enjoyment 4. Envy and Subjectivity in Orientalism 5. Ex Oriente Lex: Orientalism and the Colonisation of Sublime Enjoyment 6. Anglican Pleasures in the Orient: Staging the Rule of Law 7. Conclusion: Dust is Miscarried

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Discourses of Law

This successful and exciting series seeks to publish the most innovative scholarship at the intersection of law, philosophy and social theory. The books published in the series are distinctive by virtue of exploring the boundaries of legal thought. The work that this series seeks to promote is marked most strongly by the drive to open up new perspectives on the relation between law and other disciplines. The series has also been unique in its commitment to international and comparative perspectives upon an increasingly global legal order. Of particular interest in a contemporary context, the series has concentrated upon the introduction and translation of continental traditions of theory and law.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General
LAW / International
PHILOSOPHY / Political
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture