Department or Program



My thesis develops the concept of ‘legal hybridity’ to explain the paradoxical existence of rule of law within an authoritarian polity. Legal hybridity is a situation in which law, while instrumentally used by a regime to strengthen its authoritarian power, imposes constraints on the regime’s unlimited authoritarian power. Legal hybridity is where rule of law meets rule by law practices. The element of judicial empowerment by authoritarian regimes differentiates legal hybridity from mere authoritarian rule by law. The fusion of rule of law and rule by law under legal hybridity can be observed in the symbiosis of Weberian legal rationality dialectic and the dynamic of judicial hybridization, the simultaneous empowerment and containment of judicial independence. The evidence of legal hybridity is examined in the context of Singapore in which its authoritarian leadership instrumentally provides a rational legal framework for economic development without leading to political liberalization.

Level of Access

Open Access

First Advisor

Richter, James

Date of Graduation

Spring 5-2014

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 pdf file

Open Access

Available to all.