Journal article

Positive and Negative Constitutionalism and the Limits of Universalism: A Review Essay

Adrienne Stone, Lael K Weis

Oxford Journal of Legal Studies | Oxford University Press (OUP)


Abstract In The Principles of Constitutionalism, Nicholas Barber provides a sophisticated yet highly readable introduction to fundamental constitutional principles. At the same time, Barber seeks to reorient constitutional theory scholarship away from a mistaken ‘negative’ understanding of constitutionalism towards a ‘positive’ understanding. This essay examines that argument. We suggest that the idea of ‘positive constitutionalism’ has a weaker and a stronger sense. In its weak form, the argument calls for greater attention to what constitutions enable as well as what they restrict, and thus serves as a welcome reminder of the full potential of constitutional principles. Howe..

View full abstract

University of Melbourne Researchers