The basic idea of this contribution lies in building a concept of constitution given the relevance of violence in the foundations of the legal order. The author distinguishes different stages of high-scale conflicts in the configuration of a state’s constitutional system such as the violence perpetrated during state-building, the coercion displayed during the formal constitution-making process, and the use of force in imposing the constitutional principles under emergency circumstances. The link between violence and constitutional formation leads to a material concept of constitution grounded in the decision about the allocation of power. The contribution closes with a normative proposition on the exercise of constituent power which states that the legitimacy of a constitutional creation hinges on the lack of victims (the “no victims rule”) in all the stages concerning the establishment of a new constitutional structure.
We look forward to welcoming you on July 3-5, 2023 for our Annual Conference entitled "Islands and Ocean: Public Law in a Plural World." The conference will take place at the Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand. We will be announcing more details about the conference soon, including financial support to early career and global south scholars!