15 April 2018

BOOK: Jens MEIERHENRICH, The Remnants of the Rechtsstaat : An Ethnography of Nazi Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018). ISBN 9780198814412, $54.95

Oxford University Press will publish a new book on Nazi Law and the legal origins of dictatorship next month. The book can be pre-ordered with the publisher.


This book is an intellectual history of Ernst Fraenkel's The Dual State (1941, reissued 2017), one of the most erudite books on the theory of dictatorship ever written. Fraenkel's was the first comprehensive analysis of the rise and nature of Nazism, and the only such analysis written from within Hitler's Germany. His sophisticated-not to mention courageous-analysis amounted to an ethnography of Nazi law. As a result of its clandestine origins, The Dual State has been hailed as the ultimate piece of intellectual resistance to the Nazi regime.

In this book, Jens Meierhenrich revives Fraenkel's innovative concept of "the dual state," restoring it to its rightful place in the annals of public law scholarship. Blending insights from legal theory and legal history, he tells in an accessible manner the remarkable gestation of Fraenkel's ethnography of law from inside the belly of the behemoth. In addition to questioning the conventional wisdom about the law of the Third Reich, Meierhenrich explores the legal origins of dictatorship elsewhere, then and now. The book sets the parameters for a theory of the "authoritarian rule of law," a cutting edge topic in law and society scholarship with immediate policy implications.


Jens Meierhenrich, Associate Professor of International Relations, London School of Economics and Political Science

Jens Meierhenrich is Associate Professor of International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and previously taught for a decade at Harvard University. His books include The Legacies of Law, which won the American Political Science Association's 2009 Woodrow Wilson Foundation Award for the best book in politics, government, or international affairs; and, as co-editor, The Oxford Handbook of Carl Schmitt.


Introduction: The Remnants of the Rechtsstaat
1. Behemoth and Beyond: Theories of the Nazi State
2. The Making of a Cause Lawyer
3. The Debate about the Rechtsstaat in Nazi Germany, 1933-1936
4. An Ethnography of Nazi Law: The Gestation of The Dual State, 1936-1941
5. "A Rational Core within an Irrational Shell": An Institutional Theory of Dictatorship
6. The Decline of a Classic: Explaining the Reception of The Dual State
Conclusion: Authoritarian Rule of Law

For more information, see the publisher’s website

No comments: