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The Logic of Political Conflict in Medieval CitiesItaly and the Southern Low Countries, 1370-1440$
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Patrick Lantschner

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198734635

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198734635.001.0001

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Legitimating Political Conflict

Legitimating Political Conflict

Chapter:
(p.20) (p.21) 1 Legitimating Political Conflict
Source:
The Logic of Political Conflict in Medieval Cities
Author(s):

Patrick Lantschner

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198734635.003.0002

This chapter discusses how late medieval city dwellers went about legitimating political conflicts. Crucial for the development of such strategies was the context of the legal pluralism and polycentricity which characterized late medieval cities. Although theorists of late medieval law developed increasingly sophisticated judicial categories for the criminalization of political conflict, city dwellers developed strategies of working around accusations of rebellion. They also used claims about the liberties held by multiple urban political institutions as ways of framing and legitimating their demands. Finally, city dwellers justified their actions by affirming the pursuit of justice as one of their driving forces, thereby often taking inspiration from and echoing legal theories of licit resistance and tyranny developed by jurists and other thinkers.

Keywords:   law, legal pluralism, polycentricity, legitimacy, rebellion, resistance, justice, liberty, tyranny

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