Constitutionalism in the Americas


Constitutionalism in the Americas



Edited by Colin Crawford, Dean and Professor of Law, Louis D. Brandeis School of Law, University of Louisville, US and Daniel Bonilla Maldonado, Universidad de Los Andes, Colombia.

Constitutionalism in the Americas unites the work of leading scholars of constitutional law, comparative law and Latin American and U.S. constitutional law to provide a critical and provocative look at the state of constitutional law across the Americas today. The diverse chapters employ a variety of methodologies – empirical, historical, philosophical and textual analysis – in the effort to provide a comprehensive look at a generation of constitutional change across two continents.

The authors document surprising changes, including the relative decline in the importance of U.S. constitutional jurisprudence outside U.S. borders and the growing exchange of Latin American constitutional thought within Europe and beyond. Accompanying commentary elaborates on the role of constitutional law in global changes in political, social and economic power and influence. The chapters also prompt thinking about a wide range of topics important not just in the Americas, but across the world, including the challenges and implications of using legal transplants and, conversely, the utility and potential of borrowing and adapting constitutional and other legal models to different realities.

This book is useful not only for advanced students of constitutional law and theory but also for students new to the area and eager to tap into the newest thinking about constitutional law and law-making in the Americas and elsewhere.


1. Introduction
Daniel Bonilla Maldonado and Colin Crawford

PART I The Relationship Between Latin American and U.S. Constitutionalism
2. The Political Economy of Legal Knowledge
Daniel Bonilla Maldonado

3. The Geopolitics of Constitutionalism in Latin America
Jorge L. Esquirol

PART II Latin American Constitutionalism
4. Constitutionalism in the Americas: A Comparison between the U.S. and Latin America
Roberto Gargarella

5. Back to the Future? The return of sovereignty and the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of the states in Latin America’s “radical constitutionalism”
Javier Couso

6. Constitutionalism old, new and unbound: the case of Mexico
Francisca Pou Giménez

7. Socioeconomic Rights and Majoritarian Courts in Latin America
David Landau

PART III U.S. constitutionalism in the 21st century
8. Constitutional Drafting in Latin America: A Quantitative Perspective
David S. Law and Tom Ginsburg

9. The Global Diffusion of U.S. Legal Thought: Changing Influence, National Security and Legal Education in Crisis
Fernanda Nicola

10. The Limits of U.S. Racial Equality Without a Latin American Constitutional “Right to Work” – A Thought Experiment
Tanya Katerí Hernández


978 1 78811 332 8

Publication Date



Edward Elgar Publishing


constitutional law, law of the Americas, Constitutionalism in Latin America


Comparative and Foreign Law | Constitutional Law

Constitutionalism in the Americas