Weak Constitutionalism: Democratic Legitimacy And The Question Of Constituent Power by Joel Colón-ríosWeak Constitutionalism: Democratic Legitimacy And The Question Of Constituent Power by Joel Colón-ríos

Weak Constitutionalism: Democratic Legitimacy And The Question Of Constituent Power

byJoel Colón-ríosEditorJoel Colón-ríos

Hardcover | May 16, 2012

Pricing and Purchase Info

$185.26 online 
$203.00 list price save 8%
Earn 926 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


It has been frequently argued that democracy is protected and realized under constitutions that protect certain rights and establish the conditions for a functioning representative democracy. However, some democrats still find something profoundly unsettling about contemporary constitutional regimes. The participation of ordinary citizens in constitutional change in the world's most "advanced" democracies (such as the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom) is weak at best: the power of constitutional reform usually lies in the exclusive hands of legislatures. How can constitutions that can only be altered by those occupying positions of power be considered democratically legitimate?

This book argues that only a regime that provides an outlet for constituent power to manifest from time to time can ever come to enjoy democratic legitimacy. In so doing, it advances a democratic constitutional theory, one that combines a strong or participatory conception of democracy with a weak form of constitutionalism. The author engages with Anglo-American constitutional theory as well as examining the theory and practise of constituent power in different constitutional regimes (including Latin American countries) where constituent power has become an important part of the left¿s legal and political discourse.Weak Constitutionalism: Democratic Legitimacy and the Question of Constituent Powerwill be of particular interest to legal/political theorists and comparative constitutional lawyers. It also provides an introduction to the theory of constituent power and its relationship to constitutionalism and democracy.

Dr. Joel I. Col¿n-R¿ is a Lecturer in Law at Victoria University of Wellington. He is the author of Carl Schmitt and Constituent Power in Latin American Courts (Constellations) and The Counter Majoritarian Difficulty and the Road Not Taken: Democratizing Amendment Rules (Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence).
Title:Weak Constitutionalism: Democratic Legitimacy And The Question Of Constituent PowerFormat:HardcoverDimensions:224 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.98 inPublished:May 16, 2012Publisher:Taylor and FrancisLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0415671906

ISBN - 13:9780415671903

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Toward a Weak Constitutionalism  2. Constitutionalism's Ends  3. The Second Dimension of Democracy  4. Democracy's Principles  5. The Theory (and Practise) of Constituent Power  6. The Idea of Democratic Legitimacy  7. The Transformation of the Juridical  8. The Beginnings of Weak Constitutionalism  9. Activating Constituent Power  10. Conclusion

Editorial Reviews

'C¿lon-R¿ should be complimented for his thoughtful, structured organisation of the subject; he treads the fine line between reader friendliness and scholarly comprehensiveness.' - Azin Tadjdini, University of Oslo, Norway for Nordic Journal of International Law (2013)