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3 Eur. L.J. 1 (1997)

handle is hein.journals/eurlj3 and id is 1 raw text is: 

European Law Journal, Vol. 3, No. 1, March 1997, pp. 1-2
D Blackwell Publishers Ltd. 1997, 108 Cowley Road, Oxford OX4 IJF, UK
and 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148, USA


                               Francis Snyder

The  context of European law is being fundamentally transformed. 'Context' needs to
be understood  in the plural. At the very least it embraces the plurality of social,
political, economic  and  cultural settings in which European   Union   (including
European  Community)   law operates today. From a sociological standpoint one might
reasonably say that EU law itself is also becoming more pluralistic and indeed plural.
It thus is appropriate to  our time -  one of globalisation, post-modernism   and
fragmentation. The transformation of the setting and the reconfiguration of relations
between  law and context sometimes  occur dramatically. More often, however, these
processes are virtually invisible. This does not of course mean that they are any the less
   The response  of legal scholarship to these changes has on the whole  not been
impressive. For reasons of lack of space, if for no other, this assertion cannot be
justified here. Since its beginning, however, one of the tasks of the ELJ has been to fill
this perceived gap in legal scholarship. We have tried to encourage authors to take the
contexts of European  Union law seriously, to rethink how and why it is shaped by -
and  shapes - the contexts in which it operates, and thus to reconceptualise European
Union  law itself. The articles in this issue continue this task. In particular, not only do
they offer a thorough reinterpretation of certain familiar themes, but they also present
a number  of innovative perspectives in European legal scholarship.
   The article by Caruso is entitled 'The Missing View of the Cathedral: The Private
Law  Paradigm  of European Legal Integration'. It argues that the retention of most of
the tools of private law in national hands has been a key factor which has made it
possible for Member   States to accept European  legal integration. Now, however,
integrationist pressure is increasingly shaking the national  presumption  of the
neutrality of private law, leading to resistance which often takes the shape of formalist
entrenchment. The  article emphasises the multifaceted relationship between European
integration and private law. It also represents a significant contribution to current
discussions of the legal culture of the European Union. It points to the diversity and
similarity of national legal cultures of private law, and also to the ways in which they
overlap with and differ from ideas of law often held in the European Union arena. The
article is certain to stimulate a debate about the relationship between European
integration, in particular legal integration, and private law, notably property, contract
and tort.
   The article by Ladeur concerns 'Towards a Legal Theory of Supranationality - The
Viability of the Network Concept'. Scholars in the field of European Union law, as

C Blackwell Publishers Ltd. 1997


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