The course is offered to students of any study field.
The capacity limit for the course is 50 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 48/50, only registered: 1/50, only registered with preference (fields directly associated with the programme): 0/50
The course focuses on the main questions surrounding the emergence and existence of the modern constitutional state. It is designed as a multidisciplinary course, combining the points of view of constitutional law, political theory and history. The aim is to make the students acquainted with the main discussions concerning the modern constitutional state, including its legitimacy, sovereignty, democracy, the rule of law or fundamental rights. Even though it aims to “transfer existing knowledge”, the course will also show that most of the fundamental constitutional questions allow for more than one answer and that the search for the optimal constitution is still underway and will likely never be over.
1. The concept of constitutionalism. Emergence of the constitutional state.
2. Why should we be governed? Social contract and the problem of state legitimacy from Hobbes until today.
3. No arbitrary power. Rule of law and Rechtstaat.
4. We the people. Equality, democracy and popular sovereignty.
5. Direct democracy and representative democracy.
6. Separation of powers as a guarantee of liberty?
7. Constitutional courts and the “new constitutionalism”.
8. Fundamental rights I. The concept and its emergence.
9. Fundamental rights vs. democracy. The anti-majoritarian difficulty.
10. Fundamental rights in the 21st century. Case studies.
11. The cross-section of all problems. Elections and voting rights.
12. Peer-review constitutionalism. International and supranational organizations and their impact on traditional constitutional concepts.
Lectures, guided discussion.
In order to pass, a combination of in-class activity, one short reaction paper and the final essay is required.