Faculty Research Seminar: Discursive Constitutionalism
This seminar will introduce a novel approach to the comparative study of constitutionalism. Discursive constitutionalism is an approach that takes into account the dynamic, dialogic, and public process by which the ideas of constitutionalism are presented, circulated, and debated. The speaker, Ngoc Son Bui, will provide a functional account of three discursive models of constitutionalism in Asia. The protectionist model in Japan refers to the discursive defense of the existing constitutionalist polity. The reformist model in China denotes the discursive promotion of institutional reforms in line with constitutionalism. The diffusionist model in Vietnam features the discursive spread of constitutionalist ideas from outside into local intellectual communities. Discursive constitutionalism is a useful conceptual tool to explore the public quest for constitutionalism via discourse in the context where it is under crisis and new authoritarianism is on the rise.