Law and Diversity – Perspectives from Legal History

Cross-cutting theme

The tension between justice in general and as applied to particular cases counts among the basic experiences of any normative order. As legal history can testify, this tension is cyclical and witnesses repeated attempts at resolution through institutional arrangements and special protection regimes.

The legal system of continental Europe is based on the principle of equality. Even today, there is acute interest in how law reacts to demands of special consideration for individual and group particularities. These features relate to cultural diversity, but also to the justification of economic and socio-political differences. Part of the discussion relates to concrete changes in substantive or procedural law, but questions also arise as to whether and how long our legal system, which is based on equality, can meet these challenges while preserving its basic structure.

However, this only describes a general constellation. The social dimensions in which the tension between equality and inequality emerged and the legal solutions or attempts at solutions it produced vary from country to country. In the cross-cutting issue "Law and Diversity”, contributions from various European and Latin American countries are intended to illustrate this diversity and at the same time facilitate a comparison. Workshops in which the different perspectives are discussed serve this purpose. On this basis, we are planning collective volumes on the following topics: Fundamental questions of law, Public law, Civil law, Criminal law.

Go to Editor View