2 European Public Law—Lessons from the Concept’s Past
Armin von Bogdandy, Stephan Hinghofer-Szalkay
Edited By: Sabino Cassese, Armin von Bogdandy, Peter Huber
This chapter engages with selected texts from the past. Aiming at a deeper understanding of social phenomena by revealing the origins and transformations of core terminology, the chapter draws from the tradition of conceptual history. By studying how key authors used — and sometimes abused — this term, this chapter seeks to enrich the understanding of how public law in contemporary Europe should be perceived. It shows that historical material can be construed in such a way that the many threads that span over the centuries illuminate its features and the challenges Europe faces today. The chapter furthermore argues that past usages of European public law encourage further, useful reflections by contemporary European public lawyers, not least given its darker legacies.