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The Paradox of ConstitutionalismConstituent Power and Constitutional Form$
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Martin Loughlin and Neil Walker

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199552207

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199552207.001.0001

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Constitutionalism's Post-Modern Opening

Constitutionalism's Post-Modern Opening

(p.169) 9 Constitutionalism's Post-Modern Opening
The Paradox of Constitutionalism

Paolo Carrozza

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the radical potential of contemporary constitutionalism, whereby constituent power is neither colonized by nor in symbiosis with the legal. This potential is illustrated in the work of Negri, in which it remains a latent revolutionary possibility which lies behind the legally constituted authority of the polity. It is argued that this radical potential need no longer be seen in terms of a revolutionary paradigm. Rather, under conditions of fragmented or multi-level authority in which the state is no longer the dominant level, constitutional form continues to structure but no longer determines political possibilities nor entirely controls the ways in which political movements approach and utilize legally constituted authority.

Keywords:   constituent power, Negri, post-modernity, multi-level constitutionalism

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