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International Court Authority$
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Karen J. Alter, Laurence R. Helfer, and Mikael Rask Madsen

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198795582

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198795582.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 January 2021

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights

How Constitutional Lawyers Shape Court Authority

(p.196) 9 The Inter-American Court of Human Rights
International Court Authority

Alexandra Huneeus

Oxford University Press

This chapter seeks to explain why the impact of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights varies greatly across the different Latin American countries under its jurisdiction. Three case studies suggest that the uneven spread of constitutional ideas and practices across Latin America helps shape the type of authority the IACtHR exerts. In Colombia, where neoconstitutionalist lawyers were able to successfully ally themselves with reformers and participate in the construction of a new constitution and court starting in 1991, the Court now enjoys narrow, intermediate, and extensive authority. In Chile, where constitutional reform was muted, and neoconstitutionalist doctrines have not found strong adherents in the judiciary, the IACtHR has achieved narrow authority and, at times, intermediate authority. In Venezuela, neoconstitutionalism was sidelined as the new Bolivarian constitutional order was forged. Meanwhile, the Mexican case study suggests that the neoconstitutionalist movement can also work transnationally.

Keywords:   Inter-American Court of Human Rights, constitutional lawyers, constitutional reform, neoconstitutionalism, Bolivarian constitutional order, constitutional block, conventionality review, constitutionalization of international law, judicial review, human rights

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