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Democracy and counter-majoritarian difficulty: the behavior of the Supremo Tribunal Federal and its (i)legitimation

Grant number: 19/20540-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2020
Effective date (End): December 31, 2020
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Law - Public Law
Principal Investigator:Rafael Tomaz de Oliveira
Grantee:Luiz Felipe Machado Muraca
Host Institution: Universidade de Ribeirão Preto (UNAERP). Campus Ribeirão Preto. Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil


This project analyzes the tension between democracy and judicial review. This trade-off, also called "counter-majoritarian difficulty", will be related to the concept of authoritarianism in order to obtain the answer to two main questions. The first is whether there is a possibility of authoritarian decisions by the constitutional courts. If the answer given to the first question is positive, another question will be asked: has the Brazilian Supreme Court been acting authoritatively through its decisions? Thus, the project aims to analyze the possibility of expressions of authoritarianism in the judiciary and, concretely, to verify if such actions have been occurring in the Brazilian context. The initial hypothesis is that authoritarianism can also be expressed in jurisdictional action, especially when its organs act in ways that exceed their constitutional competences. This hypothesis will be verified through documentary revision of works that deal with the above mentioned subjects and decisions of the Brazilian Supreme Court.

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