Substate Identity-based constitutional claims: Negotiation, Rejection, and Confrontation

This paper discusses constitutional claims proposed by national identities. Constitutional debates over the roles of national identities are traditionally associated with the protection of minority rights, yet there is perhaps a larger group of constitutional demands that is fostered by identity groups (e.g. Scot or the Catalonian) . These identity-based constitutional claims are organized into a constitutional programme by an institution with a democratic mandate such regional government. The programme normally includes ‘a path for constitutional recognition’. So the aim of this presentation is to clarify the distinctive status of identity-based constitutional demands in modern and pluralist constitutional theory by explaining that some of the objections against their recognition are unfounded. I will contend that a modern constitutional system that aspires to create a set of communal alliances between strangers should seek to retrieve rational discourses, not to impose them.