Sujit Choudhry explanation of Comparative Law

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Philosophers and theologians argue that people live under the law because they are imperfect. Ironically, the law is itself imperfect. It is also diverse because different nations are governed by different law systems. Comparing these law systems is fascinating, and the study thereof is known as comparative law.


What is Comparative Law?

Comparative law is a general term used to define the study and comparison of the world’s legal systems. The study is refined into detailed categories depending on the nature of a particular aspect under study. The different categories constitute criminal, civil, constitutional, commercial, and administrative comparative law.


Comparative law studies each country’s law system and compares it with other legal systems to identify strengths and weaknesses. Theoretically, it is a broad study that seeks to find the balance and create a sort-of perfect legal system. Practically, it aims to do the same as it aids significantly in regulating countries’ relationships with each other on the international scene. In fact, it is one of the cogs working towards developing the ideal international balance advocated for by many nations around the world as globalization. As a branch of legal studies, comparative law features three distinct objectives that it hopes to achieve as its role in international law increases.  Source:


Understand Individual Legal Systems

Comparative law seeks to understand individual legal systems based on factors such as the nation’s history, culture, religion, race, and others. The good and bad legal aspects of the system are identified, and trying to eliminate the bad leads to the second objective.


Refining Legal Systems

It is normal for the international community to call out countries that have repressive laws. In all cases, these calls for reforms are based on the accepted international laws. This is done based on the judgments of comparative law, which in such cases are open for all to see.

Strengthening International Law

The differences between different countries are glaring, and each nation has to be tolerant to an acceptable degree. This tolerance is nurtured in part by comparative law, and it has helped establish and run global organizations such as the UN.


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About Professor Sujit Choudhry

Professor Sujit Choudhry is a researcher of comparative law with a wide scope of countries including South Africa, Egypt, U.S., and Ukraine.  Sujit Choudhry is also the founding director of the Center for Constitutional Transitions.


More about him in his page.

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