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Kirmse, Stefan B.

Linguistic Diversity in the Legal Sphere

Insights from Late Imperial Russia

In: (Ed.)
Law and Diversity
European and Latin American Experiences from a Legal Historical Perspective

Max-Planck-Institut für Rechtsgeschichte und Rechtstheorie, Frankfurt/Main, 2023
Serie: Global Perspectives on Legal History

p. 717-734


This paper is an expanded, comparative commentary on Gloria Patricia Lopera-Mesa’s contribution to this volume. In addition to discussing the role of language in Colombia’s changing legal order over the last two hundred years, her analysis touches on a range of related subjects: it raises broader questions about citizenship and the integration of minorities, along with linguistic policy and diversity outside the strictly judicial sphere. Her material shows striking similarities with and differences from the case of imperial Russia, which have to do with geography, the role of state law, and the sequence of legal change. I begin by elaborating on these comparisons before discussing linguistic and cultural diversity in the Russian legal sphere in greater detail.

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