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date: 21 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter takes the phrase ‘legal history as political history’ as gesturing at two existing, perhaps by now classic debates. One is the question of political history’s meaning, or its differentiation from social or cultural history. The other is the relationship between law and politics, especially regarding the Critical Legal Studies view of that relationship. The chapter begins by briefly considering these preliminary questions. It then advances a suggestion about what to look for when trying to understand legal history as political history. It suggests that there is a body of legal history being written and published today, not generally considered as a group or in any way related, that would be considered profitably as political history. The common feature for this work is that it shows change over time in the way law functions.

Keywords: legal history, political history, law, cultural history, politics, Critical Legal Studies

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