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Toward a New Legal Common Sense
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Paradigmatic transition is the idea that ours is a time of transition between the paradigm of modernity, which seems to have exhausted its regenerating capacities, and another, emergent time, of which so far we have seen only signs. Modernity as an ambitious and revolutionary sociocultural paradigm based on a dynamic tension between social regulation and social emancipation, the prevalent dynamic in the sixteenth century, has by the twenty-first century tilted in favour of regulation, to the determent of emancipation. The collapse of emancipation into regulation, and hence the impossibility of thinking about social emancipation consistently, symbolizes the exhaustion of the paradigm of modernity. At the same time, it signals the emergence of a new paradigm or new paradigms. This updated 2020 edition is written for students taking law and globalization courses, and political science, philosophy and sociology students doing optional subjects.


'The 1985 edition of this book was a pioneering work on globalisation and law; it inspired some, and stimulated or challenged many others. The second version (2003) involved substantial revision and was less optimistic; this new edition reflects many changes in the world and the author’s agonised reactions to them. As before, it is bold, incisive and imaginative. It revisits his classic works on Pasagarda, Recife and mental mapping and adds new analyses of pluralism, court reform, epistemologies of the south and an agonised commentary on recent global trends and crises. Tempered by twenty more years of social activism, mainly in Latin America, the author’s essential vision survives intact. This is essential reading for anyone interested in law from a global perspective.'

William Twining - Emeritus Quain Professor of Jurisprudence at University College London

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