Marios Constantinou


Part I, "Constitutional Learning for Cypriots in the Light of the Swiss and EU Experience:  A Sociological Perspective", sub-titled "Inducing Reflexivity in the Turkish-Cypriot Constitutional Vision" was published in the previous issue (Vol.14, No. 2, Fall 2002) of The Cyprus Review.

Abstract from Part 1: Public misconceptions in Cyprus concerning the "Swiss model" abound on both sides of the contentious federalist debate. This aggravates an already intractable conflict and further complicates attempts to apply constitutional principles of justification to the settlement of rival constructions of rights. I wish to argue that Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-Cypriot impressionistic understandings of Swiss federalism instrumentalise the federalist debate through cursory remarks and perfunctory summaries that trivialise the Swiss experience, hampering thus comparative constitutional learning through the initiation of constitutional reflexivity in the public discourse of both sides of the ethnic divide. This will be attempted through extracting some orientations from an analysis of the Swiss model which are deemed appropriate to the purpose of breaking through the systematically distorted communication that prevails in the constitutional hermeneutics of both communities. The aim will be to establish the comparative value of the Swiss experience in the federalist debate on Cyprus hoping to convert learning to policy relevant theory, encompassing as much complexity as the deadlock under consideration allows. In this first of two articles I critically examine the Turkish Cypriot constitutional vision; in a sequel article I consider relevant Greek Cypriot views.