Using the rule of law as its main theme, this text shows how abstract questions and concepts of legal philosophy are connected to concrete legal, political, and social issues. The text addresses several modern controversies and challenges students to consider both sides of an argument, using sound, reasoned thinking.
An Introduction to Legal Philosophy
Author: Andrew Altman
Publisher: Wadsworth Publishing Company
Pound, Roscoe. An Introduction to the Philosophy of Law. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1922. 307 pp. Reprinted 2003 by The Lawbook Exchange, Ltd. LCCN 2002044351. ISBN 1-58477-327-8. Cloth. $70. * Pound's Introduction outlines the philosophical foundations that support Anglo-American common law. A written version of the Storrs Lectures delivered at Yale University during the academic year 1921-1922. "Dean Pound has given us a clear, concise introduction to the philosophy of the law. It is so concise that it is impossible to summarize it so as to give any idea of its wealth of learning....An excellent, impartial and concise presentation of the subject..." William Herbert Page, Harvard Law Review 36:115-117 cited in Marke, A Catalogue of the Law Collection at New York University (1953) 922.
Author: Roscoe Pound
Publisher: The Lawbook Exchange, Ltd.
Arguing about Law introduces philosophy of law in an accessible and engaging way. The reader covers a wide range of topics, from general jurisprudence, law, the state and the individual, to topics in normative legal theory, as well as the theoretical foundations of public and private law. In addition to including many classics, Arguing About Law also includes both non-traditional selections and discussion of timely topical issues like the legal dimension of the war on terror. The editors provide lucid introductions to each section in which they give an overview of the debate and outline the arguments of the papers, helping the student get to grips with both the classic and core arguments and emerging debates in: the nature of law legality and morality the rule of law the duty to obey the law legal enforcement of sexual morality the nature of rights rights in an age of terror constitutional theory tort theory. Arguing About Law is an inventive and stimulating reader for students new to philosophy of law, legal theory and jurisprudence.
Author: Aileen Kavanagh,John Oberdiek
This primer on legal reasoning is aimed at law students and upper-level undergraduates. But it is also an original exposition of basic legal concepts that scholars and lawyers will find stimulating. It covers such topics as rules, precedent, authority, analogical reasoning, the common law, statutory interpretation, legal realism, judicial opinions, legal facts, and burden of proof.
Author: Frederick Schauer
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Taking up a single question - 'What does it mean to say that a proposition of law is true?' - this book advances a major new account of truth in law. Drawing upon the later philosophy of Wittgenstein, as well as more recent postmodern theory of the relationship between language, meaning, and the world, Patterson examines leading contemporary jurisprudential approaches to this question and finds them flawed in similar and previously unnoticed ways. Despite surface differences, the most widely discussed accounts of legal meaning - from moral realism to interpretivism - each commit themselves, Patterson argues, to a defective notion of reference in accounting for the truth of legal propositions. Tracing this common truth-conditional perspective - wherein propositions of law are true in virtue of some condition, be it a moral essence, a social fact, or communal agreement - to its source in modernism, Patterson develops an alternative (postmodern) account of legal justification, one in which linguistic practice - the use of forms of legal argument - holds the key to legal meaning.
Author: Dennis Patterson
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
This advanced introduction to central questions in legal philosophy attempts to breathe new life into stalled research.
An Introduction to the Philosophy of Law
Author: Liam Murphy
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Problems of constitutional interpretation have many faces, but much of the contemporary discussion has focused on what has come to be called "originalism." The core of originalism is the belief that fidelity to the original understanding of the Constitution should constrain contemporary judges. As originalist thinking has evolved, it has become clear that there is a family of originalist theories, some emphasizing the intent of the framers, while others focus on the original public meaning of the constitutional text. This idea has enjoyed a modern resurgence, in good part in reaction to the assumption of more sweeping power by the judiciary, operating in the name of constitutional interpretation. Those arguing for a "living Constitution" that keeps up with a changing world and changing values have resisted originalism. This difference in legal philosophy and jurisprudence has, since the 1970s, spilled over into party politics and the partisan wrangling over court appointments from appellate courts to the Supreme Court. In Constitutional Originalism, Robert W. Bennett and Lawrence B. Solum elucidate the two sides of this debate and mediate between them in order to separate differences that are real from those that are only apparent. In a thorough exploration of the range of contemporary views on originalism, the authors articulate and defend sharply contrasting positions. Solum brings learning from the philosophy of language to his argument in favor of originalism, and Bennett highlights interpretational problems in the dispute-resolution context, describing instances in which a living Constitution is a more feasible and productive position. The book explores those contrasting positions, to be sure, but also uncovers important points of agreement for the interpretational enterprise. This provocative and absorbing book ends with a bibliographic essay that points to landmark works in the field and helps lay readers and students orient themselves within the literature of the debate.
Author: Robert W. Bennett,Lawrence B. Solum
Publisher: Cornell University Press
The contemporary US legal culture is marked by ubiquitous battles among various groups attempting to seize control of the law and wield it against others in pursuit of their particular agenda. This battle takes place in administrative, legislative, and judicial arenas at both the state and federal levels. This book identifies the underlying source of these battles in the spread of the instrumental view of law - the idea that law is purely a means to an end - in a context of sharp disagreement over the social good. It traces the rise of the instrumental view of law in the course of the past two centuries, then demonstrates the pervasiveness of this view of law and its implications within the contemporary legal culture, and ends by showing the various ways in which seeing law in purely instrumental terms threatens to corrode the rule of law.
Threat to the Rule of Law
Author: Brian Z. Tamanaha
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
The most glamorous and even glorious moments in a legal system come when a high court recognizes an abstract principle involving, for example, human liberty or equality. Indeed, Americans, and not a few non-Americans, have been greatly stirred--and divided--by the opinions of the Supreme Court, especially in the area of race relations, where the Court has tried to revolutionize American society. But these stirring decisions are aberrations, says Cass R. Sunstein, and perhaps thankfully so. In Legal Reasoning and Political Conflict, Sunstein, one of America's best known commentators on our legal system, offers a bold, new thesis about how the law should work in America, arguing that the courts best enable people to live together, despite their diversity, by resolving particular cases without taking sides in broader, more abstract conflicts. Sunstein offers a close analysis of the way the law can mediate disputes in a diverse society, examining how the law works in practical terms, and showing that, to arrive at workable, practical solutions, judges must avoid broad, abstract reasoning. Why? For one thing, critics and adversaries who would never agree on fundamental ideals are often willing to accept the concrete details of a particular decision. Likewise, a plea bargain for someone caught exceeding the speed limit need not--indeed, must not--delve into sweeping issues of government regulation and personal liberty. Thus judges purposely limit the scope of their decisions to avoid reopening large-scale controversies. Sunstein calls such actions incompletely theorized agreements. In identifying them as the core feature of legal reasoning--and as a central part of constitutional thinking in America, South Africa, and Eastern Europe-- he takes issue with advocates of comprehensive theories and systemization, from Robert Bork (who champions the original understanding of the Constitution) to Jeremy Bentham, the father of utilitarianism, and Ronald Dworkin, who defends an ambitious role for courts in the elaboration of rights. Equally important, Sunstein goes on to argue that it is the living practice of the nation's citizens that truly makes law. For example, he cites Griswold v. Connecticut, a groundbreaking case in which the Supreme Court struck down Connecticut's restrictions on the use of contraceptives by married couples--a law that was no longer enforced by prosecutors. In overturning the legislation, the Court invoked the abstract right of privacy; the author asserts that the justices should have appealed to the narrower principle that citizens need not comply with laws that lack real enforcement. By avoiding large-scale issues and values, such a decision could have led to a different outcome in Bowers v. Hardwick, the decision that upheld Georgia's rarely prosecuted ban on sodomy. And by pointing to the need for flexibility over time and circumstances, Sunstein offers a novel understanding of the old ideal of the rule of law. Legal reasoning can seem impenetrable, mysterious, baroque. This book helps dissolve the mystery. Whether discussing the interpretation of the Constitution or the spell cast by the revolutionary Warren Court, Cass Sunstein writes with grace and power, offering a striking and original vision of the role of the law in a diverse society. In his flexible, practical approach to legal reasoning, he moves the debate over fundamental values and principles out of the courts and back to its rightful place in a democratic state: the legislatures elected by the people.
Author: Cass R. Sunstein
Publisher: Oxford University Press
UNDERSTANDING SCIENTIFIC REASONING develops critical reasoning skills and guides students in the improvement of their scientific and technological literacy. The authors teach students how to understand and critically evaluate the scientific information they encounter in both textbooks and the popular media. With its focus on scientific pedagogy, UNDERSTANDING SCIENTIFIC REASONING helps students learn how to examine scientific reports with a reasonable degree of sophistication. The book also explains how to reason through case studies using the same informal logic skills employed by scientists and to analyze a complex series of propositions and hypotheses using sound scientific reasoning.
Author: Ronald N. Giere,John Bickle,Robert F. Mauldin
Publisher: Wadsworth Pub Co
This book is an introduction to and defense of originalism and the Founding intended for a more general audience. No similar book exists. It is aimed at law students, advanced college students, policymakers, and the politically interested reader seeking a general introduction to originalism and its implications for today.
Author: Ilan Wurman
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Written with students in mind, Professor Raymond Wacks brings legal theory to life through his lucid and entertaining style. The author has crafted a manageable guide, balancing concise introductions to the key theorists and core issues such as punishment and rights without ignoring thesubtleties of the subject. Seminal quotes from leading scholars are included to help students recognise the impact of their work, while extensive further reading suggestions at the end of each chapter invite students to explore the broad range of literature available on central topics. Each chapter concludes with a series ofcritical questions designed to encourage reader to think analytically about the law and the key debates which surround it. This book is accompanied by online resources which includes multiple-choice questions with instant feedback to give students the chance to test their understanding.
An Introduction to Legal Theory
Author: Raymond Wacks
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Originally published in 1949, An Introduction to Legal Reasoning is widely acknowledged as a classic text. As its opening sentence states, “This is an attempt to describe generally the process of legal reasoning in the field of case law and in the interpretation of statutes and of the Constitution.” In elegant and lucid prose, Edward H. Levi does just that in a concise manner, providing an intellectual foundation for generations of students as well as general readers. For this edition, the book includes a substantial new foreword by leading contemporary legal scholar Frederick Schauer that helpfully places this foundational book into its historical and legal contexts, explaining its continuing value and relevance to understanding the role of analogical reasoning in the law. This volume will continue to be of great value to students of logic, ethics, and political philosophy, as well as to members of the legal profession and everyone concerned with problems of government and jurisprudence.
Author: Edward H. Levi
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Category: Political Science
What does economics have to do with law? Suppose legislators propose that armed robbers receive life imprisonment. Editorial pages applaud them for getting tough on crime. Constitutional lawyers raise the issue of cruel and unusual punishment. Legal philosophers ponder questions of justness. An economist, on the other hand, observes that making the punishment for armed robbery the same as that for murder encourages muggers to kill their victims. This is the cut-to-the-chase quality that makes economics not only applicable to the interpretation of law, but beneficial to its crafting. Drawing on numerous commonsense examples, in addition to his extensive knowledge of Chicago-school economics, David D. Friedman offers a spirited defense of the economic view of law. He clarifies the relationship between law and economics in clear prose that is friendly to students, lawyers, and lay readers without sacrificing the intellectual heft of the ideas presented. Friedman is the ideal spokesman for an approach to law that is controversial not because it overturns the conclusions of traditional legal scholars--it can be used to advocate a surprising variety of political positions, including both sides of such contentious issues as capital punishment--but rather because it alters the very nature of their arguments. For example, rather than viewing landlord-tenant law as a matter of favoring landlords over tenants or tenants over landlords, an economic analysis makes clear that a bad law injures both groups in the long run. And unlike traditional legal doctrines, economics offers a unified approach, one that applies the same fundamental ideas to understand and evaluate legal rules in contract, property, crime, tort, and every other category of law, whether in modern day America or other times and places--and systems of non-legal rules, such as social norms, as well. This book will undoubtedly raise the discourse on the increasingly important topic of the economics of law, giving both supporters and critics of the economic perspective a place to organize their ideas.
What Economics Has to Do with Law and Why It Matters
Author: David D. Friedman
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Recognized as one of the greatest minds of the middle ages, Aquinas's ideas--highly influential on the development of Christian doctrine--are still of fundamental philosophical importance today. This new critique of his theory of natural law discusses the theory's origins with Aristotle and advances new interpretations of contemporary legal issues which hark back to the time of Aquinas.
An Analytic Reconstruction
Author: Anthony J. Lisska
Publisher: Oxford University Press
The war on terror is remaking conventional warfare. The protracted battle against a non-state organization, the demise of the confinement of hostilities to an identifiable battlefield, the extensive involvement of civilian combatants, and the development of new and more precise military technologies have all conspired to require a rethinking of the law and morality of war. Just war theory, as traditionally articulated, seems ill-suited to justify many of the practices of the war on terror. The raid against Osama Bin Laden's Pakistani compound was the highest profile example of this strategy, but the issues raised by this technique cast a far broader net: every week the U.S. military and CIA launch remotely piloted drones to track suspected terrorists in hopes of launching a missile strike against them. In addition to the public condemnation that these attacks have generated in some countries, the legal and moral basis for the use of this technique is problematic. Is the U.S. government correct that nations attacked by terrorists have the right to respond in self-defense by targeting specific terrorists for summary killing? Is there a limit to who can legitimately be placed on the list? There is also widespread disagreement about whether suspected terrorists should be considered combatants subject to the risk of lawful killing under the laws of war or civilians protected by international humanitarian law. Complicating the moral and legal calculus is the fact that innocent bystanders are often killed or injured in these attacks. This book addresses these issues. Featuring chapters by an unrivalled set of experts, it discusses all aspects of targeted killing, making it unmissable reading for anyone interested in the implications of this practice.
Law and Morality in an Asymmetrical World
Author: Claire Finkelstein,Jens David Ohlin,Andrew Altman
Publisher: OUP Oxford
In his last book, Ronald Dworkin addresses timeless questions: What is religion and what is God's place in it? What are death and immortality? He joins a sense of cosmic mystery and beauty to the claim that value is objective, independent of mind, and immanent in the world. Belief in God is one manifestation of this view, but not the only one.
Author: Ronald Dworkin
Publisher: Harvard University Press