Chinese Civil Justice, Past and Present

Chinese Civil Justice, Past and Present

by Philip C. C. Huang
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

The culmination of twenty years of research, this essential book completes distinguished historian Philip C. C. Huang's pathbreaking trilogy on Chinese law and society from late imperial times to the present. The author argues that, despite formal adherence to Western law and legal theory, traditional Chinese judicial practices continue to flourish. Huang draws on a… See more details below

Overview

The culmination of twenty years of research, this essential book completes distinguished historian Philip C. C. Huang's pathbreaking trilogy on Chinese law and society from late imperial times to the present. The author argues that, despite formal adherence to Western law and legal theory, traditional Chinese judicial practices continue to flourish. Huang draws on a rich array of court records and field interviews to illustrate the surprising strength of traditional Chinese civil justice, as can be seen in societal and cadres mediation, and in court actions with respect to property rights, inheritance and old-age maintenance, and debts. Maoist justice too remains influential, especially its divorce and court mediation practices. Finally, despite the recent massive adoption of Western laws, legal reasoning employed in judicial practice has shown stunning continuity, with major implications for China's future.

Editorial Reviews

American Historical Review
This rich study . . . represents the culmination of two decades of research and publication. . . . [Huang] devotes most of the book to demonstrating the ways in which the adaptation of earlier Chinese legal practices has nonetheless continued down to the present, creating a distinctively Chinese modernity. . . . Huang makes a strong case for how crucial it is to understand China’s past if we are to make sense of the present and make predictions for the future. This book will be of great interest not only to those interested in law, Chinese and comparative, but also to all wrestling with the complicated and still unresolved question of the nature of modernity, Chinese and other.
— Joanna Waley-Cohen
Journal of Asian History
We are much indebted to Professor Huang for a major advance in our knowledge and understanding of Chinese civil law.
Chinese Review International
Philip Huang has established a milestone in the study of Chinese civil justice. No future research into the subject for any historical period can seriously proceed without first consulting this book (or trilogy as a whole).
China Review International
Philip Huang’s new book completes his research on the subject over the past twenty years and enriches Chinese legal history and legal studies with new perspectives. The most significant contribution of the book lies in the arguments and evidence presented that compel one to move beyond a binary view, informed by Max Weber, of the modernist Western legal system vis-à-vis the traditionalist Chinese legal system. At the same time, based on substantial case records . . . the book reveals convincingly the continuity in Chinese civil justice from the Qing dynasty to the post-Mao reform era, both in legal practices and in an underlying mode of thinking. . . . Philip Huang has established a milestone in the study of Chinese civil justice. No future research into the subject for any historical period can seriously proceed without first consulting this book.
William T. Rowe
In this book Huang demonstrates the extent to which key aspects of late imperial civil law—the deliberate gulf between representation and practice and the emphasis on community mediation—have survived the hegemonic weight of 'modern' Western formal law under the Chinese Republic, and again in the current reform era. This is a magnificent example of the uses of history to understand the puzzles of contemporary reality.
Donald Clarke
This wide-ranging, judicious, and thought-provoking volume is a fitting capstone to Philip Huang's previous work on law in Qing and Republican China. Huang makes a strong and convincing case for the relevance of Chinese legal history to law in modern China while offering fascinating insights into the modern Chinese legal system.
American Historical Review - Joanna Waley-Cohen
This rich study . . . represents the culmination of two decades of research and publication. . . . [Huang] devotes most of the book to demonstrating the ways in which the adaptation of earlier Chinese legal practices has nonetheless continued down to the present, creating a distinctively Chinese modernity. . . . Huang makes a strong case for how crucial it is to understand China’s past if we are to make sense of the present and make predictions for the future. This book will be of great interest not only to those interested in law, Chinese and comparative, but also to all wrestling with the complicated and still unresolved question of the nature of modernity, Chinese and other.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780742567719
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
12/16/2009
Series:
Asia/Pacific/Perspectives
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
316
File size:
3 MB

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >