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The 'third world' and socio-legal studies: neo-liberalism and lessons from India's legal innovations

D'Souza, Radha (2005) The 'third world' and socio-legal studies: neo-liberalism and lessons from India's legal innovations. Social & Legal Studies, 141 (4). pp. 487-513. ISSN 0964-6639

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0964663905057592

Abstract

A terse, brief order of the Supreme Court of India in the Networking of Rivers case in September 2002 impugns the role of public interest litigation in the wake of neoliberal reforms. At a poignant moment in India's 'tryst with destiny', socio-legal studies in India stand disarmed and disempowered without adequate conceptual and theoretical tools to analyse and interpret the event in emancipatory ways. The case inaugurates a new phase in judicial activism and Public Interest Litigation in India, a subject that has been written about extensively both in India and elsewhere. In this article the Networking of Rivers case is used as a vehicle to explore the trajectories of developments in socio-legal studies in India and the ways in which it may have contributed to the present theoretical and conceptual impasse. The article argues for a more geo-historically differentiated understanding of the theoretical underpinnings of socio-legal studies in India and the 'Third World' generally. Copyright 2005 SAGE Publications. All rights reserved. Not for commercial use or unauthorized distribution.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Law in development, Networking of Rivers case, public interest litigation, river basin development, 'Third World' context
Research Community:University of Westminster > Law, School of
ID Code:3938
Deposited On:23 May 2007
Last Modified:21 Oct 2009 12:25

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