BYU Law Professor Justin Collings’ book, Democracy’s Guardians: A History of the German Federal Constitutional Court, 1951-2001, was reviewed in the International Journal of Constitutional Law, one of the flagship journals of comparative constitutional law.
The review titled, “The Constitutional Miracle on the Rhine: Towards a History of West German Constitutionalism and the Federal Constitutional Court,” by Florian Meinel, states: “Justin Collings uses a wide range of sources to reconstruct the history of the institution as a concrete constitutional history of the federal republic, but also as a study in the contemporary history of political ideas. In his account of the changing structure of the Court and of the context of its decisions, he offers no less than a history of the second German democracy through the lens of its highest interpreter. His book is written in a well-crafted academic prose, full of interesting detail and insightful historical observations, complete with miniature portraits of the dramatis personae. The depth and breadth of his understanding of modern German history are admirable.”
In addition, Meinel compliments Professor Collings on his ability to contextualize historical case law: “Drawing on an impressive body of contemporary scholarly writings on the Court, biographical material on the key figures, and, most of all, debates over the Court in newspapers and the German public, he is able to contextualize historical case law in an unprecedented richness, which greatly contributes to the understanding of the jurisprudence.”
Read the full review here.