The System of the Constitution

Overview

A constitutional order is a system of systems. It is an aggregate of interacting institutions, which are themselves aggregates of interacting individuals. In The System of the Constitution, Adrian Vermeule analyzes constitutionalism through the lens of systems theory, originally developed in biology, computer science, political science and other disciplines. Systems theory illuminates both the structural constitution and constitutional judging, and reveals that standard views and claims about constitutional ...

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Overview

A constitutional order is a system of systems. It is an aggregate of interacting institutions, which are themselves aggregates of interacting individuals. In The System of the Constitution, Adrian Vermeule analyzes constitutionalism through the lens of systems theory, originally developed in biology, computer science, political science and other disciplines. Systems theory illuminates both the structural constitution and constitutional judging, and reveals that standard views and claims about constitutional theory commit fallacies of aggregation and are thus invalid. By contrast, Vermeule explains and illustrates an approach to constitutionalism that considers the systemic interactions of legal and political institutions and of the individuals who act within them.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"In this iconoclastic and provocative book, Adrian Vermeule brings a sharp understanding of institutional dynamics and processes to bear on central issues in constitutional analysis. In doing so he unsettles much received wisdom and shows how many arguments in constitutional theory have relied on static or fallacious models of how actors respond in ongoing constitutional systems. This is clarifying and important work at the intersection of political science and law, and deserves to be widely read in both fields."—Jacob T. Levy, McGill University
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199838455
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 12/30/2011
  • Pages: 232
  • Sales rank: 1,434,239
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Adrian Vermeule is Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. He is the author of Mechanisms of Democracy (OUP 2007) and Law and the Limits of Reason (OUP 2008), and co-author with Eric Posner of Terror in the Balance (OUP 2006) and The Executive Unbound (OUP 2011).

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Table of Contents

Introduction: A System of Systems
1. Systemic Analysis
2. The Structural Constitution
3. Dilemmas of the Invisible Hand
4. Systemic Feedback Through Selection
5. Constitutional Judging
Conclusion: Two Degrees of Aggregation

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