In the author's view a dividing line can be drawn between, on the one hand, teaching comparative law as an independent discipline with its own history, methods, goals and functions, and the whole "curriculum" of legal studies based on a comparative attitude and carried out with the comparative method, on the other. The differences between the traditions and present-day practice of universities and law faculties in the Civil Law and the Common Law countries in this field may be interpreted as characteristic for the "style" of the entire legal systems belonging to one of these two big legal families.
Legal historians have observed that many legal norms have remained in force for a long time, yet the great degree of social change would prima facie also entail legal innovations. But there have been fewer than expected Can one construct a general theoretical framework for assessing explanations concerning legal change and legal stability? Further, can such a framework be constructed from the perspective of comparative law? It may perhaps be argued that comparative law is not sufficient for constructing such a theory, a general analysis of society is also needed. But even if concrete conditions, and cause and effect relations cannot be entirely explained by an abstract scheme, it is at least reasonable to hope that such a scheme may clarify some of the basic concepts at work and enhance insights into the nature and progress of law. The first part of this paper considers the nature and scope of comparative law and identifies different approaches to the subject adopted by contemporary comparatists. In the second part, the problem of legal change is discussed from the standpoint of a particular theoretical perspective represented by Professor Alan Watson, one of the most productive post-War comparatists and legal historians.
's establishment in 1989, albeit with varying levels of intensity and goals. Moving beyond the often anecdotal observations in this field, this paper aims to conduct a deep analysis of how the Court uses comparativelaw in its work (during the preparatory phase and
The changes in the legal universe that have been taking place in the last few decades have increased the potential value of different kinds of comparative law information and thereby urged new objectives for the comparative law community. The comparative method, which was earlier applied in the traditional framework of domestic law, is now being adapted to the new needs created by the ongoing globalization process, becoming broader and more comprehensive with respect to both its scope and goals. Associated with this development is a growing interest in the question of transferability or transplantability of legal norms and institutions across different cultures, especially in so far as current legal integration and harmonization processes require reasonably transferable models. This paper critically examines the issue of transferability of laws with particular attention to the theory of legal transplants propounded by Professor Alan Watson, one of the most influential contemporary comparatists and legal historians. It is submitted that the element of relativity imposed by the special relationship of the law to its socio-cultural environment must be taken into consideration when the comparative method is applied. However, the view held by some scholars that legal transplants are impossible betrays an exaggeration of cultural diversity as it contradicts the teachings of history and is at odds with recent trends towards legal integration in certain world regions.