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Examination for undergraduate students – May/June 2004


The marks for this paper constitute 80% of the total marks for this course.

Answer FOUR questions.

1.  To what extent can we apply Chiba’s tripartite model structure of law to the study of legal systems in Asia and Africa?

2.  “Ehrlich’s living law theory actually works in practice.” In the light of this statement, examine the role of custom as a source of Hindu law and law in Africa.

3.   “In the ongoing struggles between jurisprudential methodologies, traditional and modern Indian laws have more or less consistently denied that legal positivism is the final arbiter. While various dreams of a Golden Age are still prominent, it has been a social fact that the realities of law are mainly determined in society, here and now, and from case to case.”


4.  “All traditional legal systems of Asia and Africa allocate some legal functions to rulers, but also keep them in check, and thus do not allow for uncontrolledAustinian positivism.”

Discuss, indicating the potential for law-making by such traditional rulers.

5.  “Despite outward differences, Indian and Pakistani laws confront the same dilemmas in handling divergences between tradition and modernity, and  demonstrate the enormous potential for postmodern legal reconstruction.”


6.  “Legal transplantation takes many forms.” (Chiba 1986).

Discuss, focusing EITHER on how modern Turkey and Japan have dealt with the reception of laws and what problems this has created, OR analyse the impact of colonialism on Asian and African legal systems.

7.  “By treating Islamic law like a natural law system rather than a legislated code, Muslim scholars have been able to maintain the claims of religious law, while safeguarding considerable space for human law-making.”

Discuss, demonstrating the effects of this approach in modern Islamic legal systems.

8.  “Legal pluralism as a global phenomenon is excellently illustrated through an analysis of South East Asian laws.”


9. “Traditional methods of dispute settlement in Asia and Africa reflect avoidance of state law and significant strategic silences.”


Note:  For students registered for a degree, this paper is part of an examination counting towards a degree award of The Uni Tutor. For other students taking this paper, the final mark awarded may count towards a non degree School qualification, provided that the student is registered for such a qualification. Examinations are governed by School regulations.

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