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Copyright (c) 2008 Northwestern University School of Law
Northwestern University Law Review

Article: GLOBALIZATION AND THE FUTURE OF CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS

Summer, 2008

Northwestern University Law Review

102 Nw. U.L. Rev. 1277

Author

David S. Law*

Excerpt



I. Introduction
 
There is one word today with the power to unleash mass protest in the streets of Seattle, Genoa, and Hong Kong. 1 That word is globalization. Definitions of the term vary, but it typically refers to both a process of change and a resulting set of conditions 2: it is a process by which "technological, economic, and political innovations ... have drastically reduced the barriers to economic, political, and cultural exchange," 3 resulting in not only "increasing transnational flows and increasingly thick networks of interdependence," 4 but also an expansion of the "scale on which power is organized and exercised." 5 For some, globalization promises peace and prosperity on an unprecedented scale; for others, it portends injustice, inequality, and the demise of community and self-government. 6 Across the political spectrum, it evokes a sense that largely uncoordinated action by faceless actors is changing political, social, and economic life in ways that we have yet to realize and that we cannot prevent. In short, it is a word coined to describe a future that we have created yet cannot fully control.

There can be little doubt that changes of this magnitude in the global order will influence the development of constitutional law. 7 The question is how? Yet the subject of globalization has barely penetrated the consciousness of constitutional scholars in this country. 8 The notable exception in this regard has been a torrential outpouring of literature on the propriety of judicial citation to foreign law, ...
 
 
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