Societal Constitutionalism in Japan: Neighbourhood Associations as Micro-relational Constitutional Sites

Luca Siliquini-Cinelli (Lead / Corresponding author)

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Abstract

Over the past few years, Japan has been witnessing the emergence, regeneration, and spread of micro-relational forms of cohesion, solidarity, and responsibility in response to the ryūdō-ka shakai and hikikomori phenomena. These terms refer to the crisis of social relations and cooperation, which commenced after the collapse of the Japanese economy in the early 1990s. While scholars, particularly sociologists and anthropologists, have consistently inquired into these micro-sites of civic friendship and responsibility, their juridical status is yet to be ascertained. This article argues that the paradigm of societal constitutionalism developed by Gunther Teubner can be of precious assistance in conducting such an assessment. In particular, it offers a contextualisation of Teubner’s reflections on constitutional pluralism and fragmentation of social functions from the perspective of Kiyoshi Hasegawa’s state-centric scholarship on the regulatory dynamics of neighbourhood associations as micro-relational communities in suburban areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-280
Number of pages32
JournalAsian Journal of Law and Society
Volume6
Issue number2
Early online date26 Jul 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

Keywords

  • Societal Constitutionalism
  • Ryūdō-ka shakai
  • Hikikomori
  • Micro-relational orderings
  • Kiyoshi Hasegawa

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