This wide-ranging volume advances our understanding of law and empire in the early modern world. Distinguished contributors expose new dimensions of legal pluralism in the British, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Ottoman empires. In-depth analyses probe such topics as the shifting legal privileges of corporations, the intertwining of religious and legal thought, and the effects of clashing legal authorities on sovereignty and subjecthood. Case studies show how a variety of individuals engage with the law and shape the contours of imperial rule. The volume reaches from Peru to New Zealand to Europe to capture the varieties and continuities of legal pluralism and to probe the analytic power of the concept of legal pluralism in the comparative study of empires. For legal scholars, social scientists, and historians, Legal Pluralism and Empires, 1500-1850 maps new approaches to the study of empires and the global history of law.
Lauren Benton is Professor of History and Affiliated Professor of Law at New York University. Her books include A Search for Sovereignty: Law and Geography in European Empires, 1400-1900 and Law and Colonial Cultures: Legal Regimes in World History, 1400-1900. Richard J. Ross is Professor of Law and History at the University of Illinois (Urbana/Champaign) and Director of the Symposium on Comparative Early Modern Legal History. With Steven Wilf, he is currently working on a book entitled: The Beginnings of American Law: A Comparative Study.
Acknowledgments 1 Empires and Legal Pluralism Lauren Benton and Richard J. RossPart I: Composite Polities across Empires 2 "Bundles of Hyphens"Philip J. Stern 3 Litigating EmpireHelen DewarPart II: Political and Religious Imagination 4 Aspects of Legal Pluralism in the Ottoman EmpireKaren Barkey 5 Reconstructing Early Modern Notions of Legal Pluralism Richard J. Ross and Philip J. Stern 6 Between Justice and EconomicsBrian P. OwensbyPart III: Constructing Imperial Jurisdiction 7 Magistrates in Empire Lauren Benton and Lisa Ford 8 "Seeking the Water of Baptism"Linda M. Rupert 9 "A Pretty Gov[ernment]!"P. G. McHughPart IV: Concluding Perspectives 10 Laws' HistoriesPaul D. Halliday 11 Rules of Law, Politics of Empire Jane Burbank and Frederick Cooper About the Contributors Index