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The politics of the Shanghai courts: the state, local elites, and social networks in Nationalist China, 1927–1937
- The politics of the Shanghai courts: the state, local elites, and social networks in Nationalist China, 1927–1937
- CHIN S.J.
- Ewha Authors
- SCOPUS Author ID
- Issue Date
- Journal Title
- Journal of Modern Chinese History
- pp. 1 - 21
- judiciary; local elites; Nationalist Party; Shanghai courts; Shanghai lawyers; social networks
- This article explores the ways in which the Nationalist Party established dominance over the Shanghai courts in the foreign concession area to use them as weapons against political dissidents, and it analyzes the intricate relations among the Nationalist Party, local elites, and the Shanghai courts during the Nanjing decade (1927–1937). Building on recent studies that pay attention to the limited success of the Nationalist Party’s policy of putting the judiciary under Party control, this study demonstrates that the process of establishing the Nationalist Party’s dominance over the Shanghai courts was highly contested. The interplay between the Nationalist Party’s effort to gain control over the Shanghai courts by building formal and informal institutions and the local elites’ appropriation of their own social networks rendered the Shanghai courts vulnerable not only to the Party’s intervention, but also to the influence of social forces. I argue that due to the weak authority of the Shanghai courts, the Nationalist Party’s use of law against political foes could be a double-edged sword. © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
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