The Endurance of National Constitutions

The Endurance of National Constitutions

by Zachary Elkins, Tom Ginsburg, James Melton
     
 

ISBN-10: 0521731321

ISBN-13: 9780521731324

Pub. Date: 10/12/2009

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Constitutions are supposed to provide an enduring structure for politics. Yet only half live more than nineteen years. Why is it that some constitutions endure while others do not? In The Endurance of National Constitutions, Zachary Elkins, Tom Ginsburg, and James Melton examine the causes of constitutional endurance from an institutional perspective. Supported by

Overview

Constitutions are supposed to provide an enduring structure for politics. Yet only half live more than nineteen years. Why is it that some constitutions endure while others do not? In The Endurance of National Constitutions, Zachary Elkins, Tom Ginsburg, and James Melton examine the causes of constitutional endurance from an institutional perspective. Supported by an original set of cross-national historical data, theirs is the first comprehensive study of constitutional mortality. They show that whereas constitutions are imperiled by social and political crises, certain aspects of a constitution’s design can lower the risk of death substantially. Thus, to the extent that endurance is desirable – a question that the authors also subject to scrutiny – the decisions of founders take on added importance.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521731324
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
10/12/2009
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
270
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. How long should constitutions endure?; 3. Conceptualizing constitutions; 4. A positive theory of constitutional endurance; 5. Empirical implications of the theory: identifying risks to constitutional life; 6. An epidemiological analysis of constitutional mortality; 7. Contrasts in constitutional endurance; 8. Contexts of chronic failure; 9. Conclusion.

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