Mobile People, Mobile Law: Expanding Legal Relations in a Contracting World, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Mobile People, Mobile Law

Expanding Legal Relations in a Contracting World, 1st Edition

By Franz von Benda-Beckmann, Keebet von Benda-Beckmann


344 pages

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Paperback: 9781138275133
pub: 2016-09-09
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Hardback: 9780754623861
pub: 2005-06-24
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315248806
pub: 2017-03-02
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Demonstrating how users of law, who often operate in multi-sited situations, are forced to deal with increasingly complex legal circumstances, this volume focuses on political and social processes through which people appropriate, use and create legal forms in multiple legal settings. It provides new insights into social and political processes through which transnational law is locally appropriated by different actors and presents empirical studies of confrontation, adaptation, vernacularization and hybridization of law due to its transplantation across the borders of national states. The contributors offer insights into modern dynamics of legal change, challenging assumptions about increasing homogeneity in law, with a keen eye for the historical situations in which current legal changes stand.


'Anthropologists, lawyers, sociolegal scholars and human rights advocates will find here highly current projects on the new conflicts, idioms, purposes, institutions, partnerships and risks emergent from the ground-level effects of globalization, as these are registered through law. Thematically, regionally and methodologically varied, the essays - together with the editors' critical synthesis of the field - yield a thoughtful provocation toward a new legal anthropology.' Carol Greenhouse, Princeton University, USA '…the focus is commendable…the essays are well-written and represent the results of extensive field research.' The Law and Politics Book Review

Table of Contents

Contents: Mobile people, mobile law: an introduction, Franz von Benda-Beckmann, Keebet von Benda-Beckmann and Anne Griffiths; Transborder citizenship: an outcome of legal pluralism within transnational social fields, Nina Glick Schiller; Transnational migration and the re-framing of normative values, Monique Nuijten; 'Global fire': repatriation and reparations from a Rastafari (re)migrants perspective, Werner Zips; McTradition in the new South Africa: commodified custom and rights talk with the Bafokeng and the Bapedi, Barbara Oomen; Democracy in flux: time, mobility and sedentarization of law in Minangkabau, Indonesia, Franz von Benda-Beckmann and Keebet von Benda-Beckmann; Mobile law and globalism: epistemic communities versus community-based innovation in the fisheries sector, Melanie G. Wiber; Contesting decentralization: transitional policy narratives and the emergence of volatile socio-legal configurations in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, John F. McCarthy; Negotiating water rights in the context of a new political and legal landscape in Zimbabwe, Anne Hellum and Bill Derman; The Americanization of international law, Laura Nader; Human rights and global legal pluralism: reciprocity and disjuncture, Sally E. Merry; Project law - normative orders of bilateral development cooperation and social change: a case study from the German Agency for Technical Co-operation, Markus Weilenmann; School and religious difference: current negotiations within the Swiss immigrant society - viewed in a comparative perspective, Joanna Pfaff-Czarnecka; Localizing the global: rights of participation in the Scottish Children's Hearings System, Anne Griffiths and Randy F. Kandel; Mobility versus law, mobility in the law? Judges in Europe are confronted with the thorny question 'which law applies to litigants of migrant origin?' , Marie-Claire Foblets; Index.

About the Authors

Franz von Benda-Beckmann and Keebet von Benda-Beckmann are both Professors and Project Directors at Legal Pluralism, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Germany. Dr Anne Griffiths is Reader in Law for the School of Law at the University of Edinburgh, UK.

About the Series

Law, Justice and Power

Law, Justice and Power
To speak about law is always and necessarily to be engaged in a discourse about both justice and power. While law's relationship to justice is everywhere contingent and uncertain, law completely divorced from power is unthinkable. And, while law need not be virtuous to be law, if it had no effect in the world it could hardly be said to merit the name law. Recognizing these facts, the series on Law, Justice and Power takes a broad view of legal scholarship.It publishes books by social scientists, humanists and legal academics which connect an understanding of culture's normative ideals with examination of the complex ways that law works in the world, insist that justice is inseparable from social practices and analyze law as one form of power, one way of constituting, controlling and changing the social world. It focuses on state law as well as law in communities and cultural practices and on identities and their articulation in and through law, on law's power in the taken-for-granted world, on its role in the complex construction of nation and national power and on global developments which today destabilize and transform the meaning and significance of law. The series invites innovative scholarship that crosses disciplinary as well as geographic and temporal boundaries.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General
LAW / International