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Transnational Networking and Elite Self-EmpowermentThe Making of the Judiciary in Contemporary Europe and Beyond$
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Cristina E. Parau

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780197266403

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197266403.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM BRITISH ACADEMY SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.britishacademy.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright British Academy, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in BASO for personal use.date: 28 May 2022

The assumption of intellectual-moral superiority

The assumption of intellectual-moral superiority

(p.199) 5 The assumption of intellectual-moral superiority
Transnational Networking and Elite Self-Empowerment

Cristina E. Parau

British Academy

This chapter evidences that the Network Community assume judges (viz., themselves) to be morally superior to all other actors in a political context because of their sole reliance on intellect. The political ramifications of this assumption are analysed: the practically limitless power to expand the scope of legal texts through ‘activist’ interpretation (the ‘living constitution’); the power to superintend democracy; the power to silence all other voices asserting constitutional meaning, even the people themselves. The end goal is the power to reconstruct society in the Network Community’s own image, according to its presumptively superior norms and values. It is inferred that the hegemonic power of the intellectual-moral superiority assumption constitutes a (possibly the) major cause of judicial power over the nation-states of Europe, and the normative basis of the judicialization of politics.

Keywords:   Intellectual-moral superiority, societal reconstruction, living constitution, hegemonic discourse, constitutional adjudication, superintendence of democracy, judicial activism

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