The Difference that Religion Makes: Transplanting Legal Ideas from the West to Japan and India
81 - 97
Asian Journal of Comparative Law
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What is the fate of legal transplants when they arrive from one culture to another? Using the theoretical framework of legal transplantation developed by Masaji Chiba and the theory of religion developed by S.N. Balagangadhara the problem is tested with two different types of indigenous law, in Japan and India, which do not have religion. When certain kinds of legal ideas, embedded as norms within the Western culture, which is constituted by a religion, Christianity, enter non-Western cultures that do not have religion, those ideas break down, become distorted, absurd or nonsensical, and induce conflict. The secular state engages in the process of suppressing what it implicitly regards as false religion or idolatrous practices. As Chiba foresaw, this process can even lead to the identity postulate of a legal culture being altered or destroyed.
- Department of Law