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Full-Text Articles in Legal History

Justice Scalia’S Originalism And Formalism: The Rule Of Criminal Law As A Law Of Rules, Stephanos Bibas Aug 2016

Justice Scalia’S Originalism And Formalism: The Rule Of Criminal Law As A Law Of Rules, Stephanos Bibas

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Far too many reporters and pundits collapse law into politics, assuming that the left–right divide between Democratic and Republican appointees neatly explains politically liberal versus politically conservative outcomes at the Supreme Court. The late Justice Antonin Scalia defied such caricatures. His consistent judicial philosophy made him the leading exponent of originalism, textualism, and formalism in American law, and over the course of his three decades on the Court, he changed the terms of judicial debate. Now, as a result, supporters and critics alike start with the plain meaning of the statutory or constitutional text rather than loose appeals to ...


Jurisprudence Between Science And The Humanities, Dan Priel Jul 2016

Jurisprudence Between Science And The Humanities, Dan Priel

Dan Priel

For a long time philosophy has been unique among the humanities for seeking closer alliance with the sciences. In this Article I examine the place of science in relation to legal positivism. I argue that, historically, legal positivism has been advanced by theorists who were also positivists in the sense the term is used in the philosophy of social science: they were committed to the idea that the explanation of social phenomena should be conducted using similar methods to those used in the natural sciences. I then argue that since around 1960 jurisprudence, and legal positivism in particular, has undergone ...


Criminal Prosecution And Section 1983, Barry C. Scheck Apr 2016

Criminal Prosecution And Section 1983, Barry C. Scheck

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2016

The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

Joseph Fishkin and William Forbath’s book-in-progress, The Anti-Oligarchy Constitution, offers a radical alternative to the constitutional histories that emerged in the 1990s to defend the New Deal synthesis. Fishkin and Forbath’s new constitutional history promises to recast the New Deal as a contingent and incomplete resolution of a centuries-long struggle to achieve the political-economic conditions that the Constitution requires – “requires” in the double sense of “demands” and “depends upon.” This struggle is still ongoing and even accelerating, Fishkin and Forbath report, yet it has become increasingly “one-sided.” First, the post-WWII economic boom dissipated, taking with it much of ...


The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler Jan 2016

The Political Economy Of "Constitutional Political Economy", Jeremy K. Kessler

Faculty Scholarship

Since the early 1990s, constitutional history has experienced a renaissance. This revival had many causes, but three stand out: the Rehnquist Court's attack on formerly sacrosanct features of the "New Deal agenda"; Reagan-Era reassessments of American political development by political scientists, historians, and historical sociologists; and the frustration of constitutional scholars with the inability of legal process theory or political philosophy to produce "authoritative constitutional principles." Spurred by legal crisis and this mix of disciplinary innovation and stagnation, law professors began to tell new stories about our constitutional heritage. They focused on the sources and significance of the New ...


Working Themselves Impure: A Life Cycle Theory Of Legal Theories, Jeremy Kessler, David Pozen Jan 2016

Working Themselves Impure: A Life Cycle Theory Of Legal Theories, Jeremy Kessler, David Pozen

Faculty Scholarship

Prescriptive legal theories have a tendency to cannibalize themselves. As they develop into schools of thought, they become not only increasingly complicated but also increasingly compromised, by their own normative lights. Maturation breeds adulteration. The theories work themselves impure.

This Article identifies and diagnoses this evolutionary phenomenon. We develop a stylized model to explain the life cycle of certain particularly influential legal theories. We illustrate this life cycle through case studies of originalism, textualism, popular constitutionalism, and cost-benefit analysis, as well as a comparison with leading accounts of organizational and theoretical change in politics and science. And we argue that ...


‘Jogalkotási Javaslatok Megfogalmazása A Jogtudományban’ [Policy Proposals And Legal Scholarship], Péter Cserne, György Gajduschek Dec 2012

‘Jogalkotási Javaslatok Megfogalmazása A Jogtudományban’ [Policy Proposals And Legal Scholarship], Péter Cserne, György Gajduschek

Péter Cserne

This is the manuscript of a chapter written for a Hungarian handbook on legal scholarship. It provides an historical overview and a theoretical defense of a policy oriented, in contrast to doctrinal, study of law. The chapter also provides an introduction to the foundations and methodological tools of public policy analysis, including regulatory impact assessment.


Jurisprudence Between Science And The Humanities, Dan Priel Jan 2012

Jurisprudence Between Science And The Humanities, Dan Priel

Washington University Jurisprudence Review

For a long time philosophy has been unique among the humanities for seeking closer alliance with the sciences. In this Article I examine the place of science in relation to legal positivism. I argue that, historically, legal positivism has been advanced by theorists who were also positivists in the sense the term is used in the philosophy of social science: they were committed to the idea that the explanation of social phenomena should be conducted using similar methods to those used in the natural sciences. I then argue that since around 1960 jurisprudence, and legal positivism in particular, has undergone ...


Is International Law Part Of Natural Law?, Anthony D'Amato Jan 2010

Is International Law Part Of Natural Law?, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

The affinity of international law to natural law goes back a long way to the classic writers of international law. "Natural law" is the method of dispute resolution based on a conscious attempt to perpetuate past similarities in dispute resolution. "International law" has a deep affinity to this natural law method, for it consists of those practices that have "worked" in inter-nation conflict resolution.


Can Any Legal Theory Constrain Any Judicial Decision?, Anthony D'Amato Jan 2010

Can Any Legal Theory Constrain Any Judicial Decision?, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

A growing number of legal scholars have recently revived the American legal realist thesis that legal theory does not dictate the result in any particular case because legal theory itself is indeterminate. A more radical group has added that theory can never constrain judicial practice. I will present a spectrum of types of legal theories to demonstrate that the position of the more radical group of writers is correct—that legal theory is inherently incapable of identifying which party should win any given case.


The Effect Of Legal Theories On Judicial Decisions, Anthony D'Amato Jan 2010

The Effect Of Legal Theories On Judicial Decisions, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

I draw a distinction in the beginning of this essay between judicial decision-making and a judge's decision-making. To persuade a judge, we should try to discover what her theories are. Across a range of theories, I offered well-known case examples typically cited as examples of each theory. Then I showed that the exact same theory used to justify or explain those case results could be used to justify or explain the opposite result in each of those cases.


The Rule Of Law As An Institutional Ideal, Gianluigi Palombella Jan 2010

The Rule Of Law As An Institutional Ideal, Gianluigi Palombella

Gianluigi Palombella

This article aims at offering an innovative interpretation of the potentialities of the "rule of law" for the XXI Century. It goes beyond current uses and the dispute between formal and substantive conceptions, by reaching the roots of the institutional ideal. Also through historical reconstruction and comparative analysis, the core of the rule of law appears to be a peculiar notion, showing a special objective that the law is asked to achieve, on a legal plane, largely independent of political instrumentalism. The normative meaning is elaborated on and construed around the notions of institutional equilibrium, non domination and "duality" of ...


The Interpretation-Construction Distinction, Lawrence B. Solum Jan 2010

The Interpretation-Construction Distinction, Lawrence B. Solum

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The interpretation-construction distinction, which marks the difference between linguistic meaning and legal effect, is much discussed these days. I shall argue that the distinction is both real and fundamental – that it marks a deep difference in two different stages (or moments) in the way that legal and political actors process legal texts. My account of the distinction will not be precisely the same as some others, but I shall argue that it is the correct account and captures the essential insights of its rivals. This Essay aims to mark the distinction clearly!

The basic idea can be explained by distinguishing ...


Szerződésértelmezés Hermeneutika És Jogpolitika Között. A Contra Proferentem Szabály [Contract Interpretation Between Hermeneutics And Policy: The Contra Proferentem Rule], Péter Cserne Oct 2009

Szerződésértelmezés Hermeneutika És Jogpolitika Között. A Contra Proferentem Szabály [Contract Interpretation Between Hermeneutics And Policy: The Contra Proferentem Rule], Péter Cserne

Péter Cserne

This paper discusses why contract interpretation is substantially different from the interpretation of literary works and illustrates the argument with the analysis of the contra proferentem rule. It is a substantially revised version of my ‘Policy considerations in contract interpretation: the contra proferentem rule from a comparative law and economics perspective’ (2009)


Global Threads: Weaving The Rule Of Law And The Balance Of Legal Software, Gianluigi Palombella Jan 2009

Global Threads: Weaving The Rule Of Law And The Balance Of Legal Software, Gianluigi Palombella

Gianluigi Palombella

The article shows how the global legal sphere attempts to compensate the lack of a system (hardware) and faces the proliferation of legal normativities (software). The author elaborates on the role of the rule of law: after stressing the ambiguities and the contestability of its current uses in the confrontations between legal orders and regulatory regimes, it is explained that the persistence and promise of the rule of law in the global setting depend on the weaving of a set of meta-rules (a special kind of software) developed through various areas and sources of legalities in the international environment. Eventually ...


Jogelmélet Jog Nélkül? [Legal Theory Without Law?], Péter Cserne Nov 2008

Jogelmélet Jog Nélkül? [Legal Theory Without Law?], Péter Cserne

Péter Cserne

No abstract provided.


The Rule Of Law, Democracy, And International Law - Learning From The Us Experience, Gianluigi Palombella Dec 2007

The Rule Of Law, Democracy, And International Law - Learning From The Us Experience, Gianluigi Palombella

Gianluigi Palombella

The general issue addressed in this paper is the relation between the rule of law as a matter of national law, and as a matter of international law. Different institutional conceptions of this relationship give rise to different attitudes towards international law. Nonetheless, questions arise that cast doubt on age-old tenets of certain Western countries concerning the radical separability between the rule of law within the domestic system and in the international realm. The article will start considering some recent developments in the United States' treatment of alien detainees. Then it shall address the relation between domestic constitutions and international ...


The Inescapable Federalism Of The Ninth Amendment, Kurt T. Lash Feb 2007

The Inescapable Federalism Of The Ninth Amendment, Kurt T. Lash

ExpressO

For the past several decades, the majority of courts and commentators have viewed the Ninth Amendment as a provision justifying judicial enforcement of unenumerated individual rights against state and federal abridgment. The most influential advocate of this libertarian reading of the Ninth has been Professor Randy Barnett who has argued in a number of articles and books that the Ninth was originally understood as guarding unenumerated natural rights. Recently uncovered historical evidence, however, suggests that those who framed and ratified the Ninth Amendment understood the Clause as a guardian of the retained right to local self-government. Recognizing the challenge this ...


Jurisprudence And Gender, Robin West Jan 1988

Jurisprudence And Gender, Robin West

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

What is a human being? Legal theorists must, perforce, answer this question: jurisprudence, after all, is about human beings. The task has not proven to be divisive. In fact, virtually all modern American legal theorists, like most modern moral and political philosophers, either explicitly or implicitly embrace what I will call the "separation thesis" about what it means to be a human being: a "human being," whatever else he is, is physically separate from all other human beings. I am one human being and you are another, and that distinction between you and me is central to the meaning of ...


The Authoritarian Impulse In Constitutional Law, Robin West Jan 1988

The Authoritarian Impulse In Constitutional Law, Robin West

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Should there be greater participation by legislators and citizens in constitutional debate, theory, and decision-making? An increasing number of legal theorists from otherwise divergent perspectives have recently argued against what Paul Brest calls the "principle of judicial exclusivity" in our constitutional processes. These theorists contend that because issues of public morality in our culture either are, or tend to become, constitutional issues, all political actors, and most notably legislators and citizens, should consider the constitutional implications of the moral issues of the day. Because constitutional questions are essentially moral questions about how active and responsible citizens should constitute themselves, we ...