Comparative Law - LW522

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2017-18 2018-19
(version 2)
Autumn and Spring
View Timetable
6 30 (15) DR S Glanert


LW313/323 A Critical Introduction to Law and LW588/614 Public Law 1.


Not available to non-law students.



Over the academic year, a wide range of topics will be covered, these may include the following:

- The History of Comparative Law
- The Strengths and Weaknesses of Comparative Law
- The Politics of Comparative Law
- Method: Comparative Law's Quandary
- The Relationship Between the (Legal) Self and the Other
- Reading Foreign Law: The Possibilities and Limits of Legal Translation
- Common Law and Civil Law: Not so Different?
- How Legal Concepts Travel (or Not) Across Legal Cultures
- Can Western Comparative Law Work in Asia?
- The Use of Foreign Law in Constitutional Interpretation
- The Debate Over Harmonization and Uniformization of Laws
- Towards a Global Legal Order? Comparative Law’s Contribution


This module appears in:

Contact hours

The module will be taught in a weekly lecture and fortnightly seminar format.

Method of assessment

100% coursework, consisting of 3 short papers of no more than 2000 words and 1 essay consisting of no more than 5000 words.

Preliminary reading

P Legrand and R Munday (eds) Comparative Legal Studies: Traditions and Transitions (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003)
W Menski Comparative Law in a Global Context 2nd ed (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006)
M Reimann and R Zimmermann (eds) The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008)
K Zweigert and H Kötz An Introduction to Comparative Law, transl. Tony Wier, 3rd ed (Oxford: Oxford University Press,1998)
V C Jackson Constitutional Engagement in a Transnational Era (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010)
PG Monateri (ed) Methods of Comparative Law (Cheltenham: Elgar, 2012)
H P Glenn Legal Traditions of the World 5th ed (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014)
M Siems, Comparative Law (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014)
G Samuel An Introduction to Comparative Law Theory and Method (Oxford: Hart, 2014)
S Glanert (ed), Comparative Law - Engaging Translation (London: Routledge, 2014)
S Breyer The Court and the World (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2015).

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

Students who successfully complete this module will:
- have a thorough appreciation for current theoretical debates within the field of comparative law;
- have the systematic ability to engage critically with the various, and at times conflicting, methods informing comparative law;
- be conversant with hermeneutics, deconstruction and translation studies as these movements pertain to the study of comparative law;
- be critically sensitive to the cultural embeddedness of legal comparisons;
- have a sound understanding of the conditions under which legal ideas travel between different legal cultures.

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