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Articles 1 - 12 of 12

Full-Text Articles in Legal History

The Legacy Of Ronald Dworkin (1931-2013): A Legal Theory And Methodology For Hedgehogs, Hercules, And One Right Answers, Imer Flores Dec 2014

The Legacy Of Ronald Dworkin (1931-2013): A Legal Theory And Methodology For Hedgehogs, Hercules, And One Right Answers, Imer Flores

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

In this paper the author addresses Ronald Dworkin’s work and assesses his legacy to legal, moral and political philosophy. And so, considers among its merits having developed an original legal theory with its distinctive methodology, which not only has transcended the Natural Law and Legal Positivism dichotomy, but also has reintegrated law into a branch of political morality and defended as a corollary the one right answer thesis. Hence, commences by identifying the dworkininan challenge; continues by introducing some basic definitions and distinctions between jurisprudence, legal philosophy (or philosophy of law) and legal theory (or theory of law), on ...


Representation In Context: Party Power And Lawyer Expertise, Colleen F. Shanahan, Anna E. Carpenter, Alyx Mark Aug 2014

Representation In Context: Party Power And Lawyer Expertise, Colleen F. Shanahan, Anna E. Carpenter, Alyx Mark

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The questions when, why, and how legal representation makes a difference for parties in civil litigation remain largely unanswered, although recent scholarship raises compelling new questions and suggests new explanations and theoretical approaches. Understanding how legal representation operates, we argue, requires an appreciation for the context in which the representation actually takes place. This article examines two previously unexplored elements of the context of legal representation through empirical and theoretical analysis: the balance of power between the parties to a dispute and the professional, specifically strategic, expertise that a legal representative contributes. The results of a study of 1,700 ...


The Difference Prevention Makes: Regulating Preventive Justice, David Cole Mar 2014

The Difference Prevention Makes: Regulating Preventive Justice, David Cole

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States and many other countries have adopted a ‘‘paradigm of prevention,’’ employing a range of measures in an attempt to prevent future terrorist attacks. This includes the use of pre textual charges for preventive detention, the expansion of criminal liability to prohibit conduct that precedes terrorism, and expansion of surveillance at home and abroad. Politicians and government officials often speak of prevention as if it is an unqualified good. Everyone wants to prevent the next terrorist attack, after all. And many preventive initiatives, especially where they are not coercive and ...


Analogical Legal Reasoning: Theory And Evidence, Joshua C. Teitelbaum Mar 2014

Analogical Legal Reasoning: Theory And Evidence, Joshua C. Teitelbaum

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The paper offers a formal model of analogical legal reasoning and takes the model to data. Under the model, the outcome of a new case is a weighted average of the outcomes of prior cases. The weights capture precedential influence and depend on fact similarity (distance in fact space) and precedential authority (position in the judicial hierarchy). The empirical analysis suggests that the model is a plausible model for the time series of U.S. maritime salvage cases. Moreover, the results evince that prior cases decided by inferior courts have less influence than prior cases decided by superior courts.


Overrides: The Super-Study, Victoria Nourse Jan 2014

Overrides: The Super-Study, Victoria Nourse

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Overrides should be of interest to a far larger group of scholars than statutory interpretation enthusiasts. We have, in overrides, open inter branch encounters between Congress and the Courts far more typically found in the shadows of everyday Washington politics. Interestingly, Christiansen and Eskridge posit the court-congress relationship as more triadic than dyadic given the role played by agencies. One of their more interesting conclusions is that agencie are the big winners in the override game: agencies were present in seventy percent of the override cases and the agency view prevailed with Congress and against the Supreme Court in three-quarters ...


Constitutional Skepticism: A Recovery And Preliminary Evaluation, Louis Michael Seidman Jan 2014

Constitutional Skepticism: A Recovery And Preliminary Evaluation, Louis Michael Seidman

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The aim of this article is to recover and reevaluate the American tradition of constitutional skepticism. Part I consists of a brief history of skepticism running from before the founding to the modern period. My aim here is not to provide anything like a complete description of the historical actors, texts, and events that I discuss. Instead, I link together familiar episodes and arguments that stretch across our history so as to demonstrate that they are part of a common narrative that has been crucial to our self-identity. Part II disentangles the various strands of skeptical argument. I argue that ...


The Rise And Fall Of Unconscionability As The 'Law Of The Poor', Anne Fleming Jan 2014

The Rise And Fall Of Unconscionability As The 'Law Of The Poor', Anne Fleming

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

What happened to unconscionability? Here’s one version of the story: The doctrine of unconscionability experienced a brief resurgence in the mid-1960s at the hands of naive, left-liberal, activist judges, who used it to rewrite private consumer contracts according to their own sense of justice. These folks meant well, no doubt, much like present-day consumer protection crusaders who seek to ensure the “fairness” of financial products and services. But courts’ refusal to enforce terms they deemed "unconscionable” served only to increase the cost of doing business with low-income households. Judges ended up hurting the very people they were trying to ...


The Constitution And Legislative History, Victoria Nourse Jan 2014

The Constitution And Legislative History, Victoria Nourse

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

In this article, the author provides an extended analysis of the constitutional claims against legislative history, arguing that, under textualists’ own preference for constitutional text, the use of legislative history should be constitutional to the extent it is supported by Congress’s rulemaking power, a constitutionally enumerated power.

This article has five parts. In part I, the author explains the importance of this question, considering the vast range of cases to which this claim of unconstitutionality could possibly apply—after all, statutory interpretation cases are the vast bulk of the work of the federal courts. She also explains why these ...


Uncovering The Reformation Roots Of American Marriage And Divorce Law, Judith C. Areen Jan 2014

Uncovering The Reformation Roots Of American Marriage And Divorce Law, Judith C. Areen

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

In 1639, Massachusetts Bay colonists pressed Governor John Winthrop to adopt a “body of laws” that would restrict the considerable power that “rested in the discretion of magistrates.” Having survived both the transatlantic voyage and the rigors of the new world in their quest to establish a religious utopia away from the demands of church and state in England, the colonists were understandably loath to give their local officials unchecked power. Winthrop offered several reasons why the leaders of the colony opposed the request: the colonists did not yet have enough experience to develop laws appropriate for their new circumstances ...


Toward An Ethics Of Being Lobbied: Affirmative Obligations To Listen, Heidi Li Feldman Jan 2014

Toward An Ethics Of Being Lobbied: Affirmative Obligations To Listen, Heidi Li Feldman

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Lobbying in the U.S. today grows out of a historical legal and, eventually, Constitutional right to petition the government for redress of grievances. English kings, the English Parliament, and American colonial legislatures had incentives for not only recognizing the right but treating it fulsomely, as a means for communicating extensively with the widest possible range of those over whom kings, Parliament, and legislatures had or sought to have power. Because of drastic changes in circumstance, today's officials do not have this incentive. Financial and structural forces tend to narrow the range of people legislators and elected executives hear ...


J. Skelly Wright And The Limits Of Liberalism, Louis Michael Seidman Jan 2014

J. Skelly Wright And The Limits Of Liberalism, Louis Michael Seidman

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

This essay, written for a symposium on the life and work of United States Court of Appeals Judge J. Skelly Wright, makes four points. First, Judge Wright was an important participant in the liberal legal tradition. The tradition sought to liberate law from arid formalism and to use it as a technique for progressive reform. However, legal liberals also believed that there were limits on what judges could do–-limits rooted in both its liberalism and its legalism. Second, Wright occupied a position on the left fringe of the liberal legal tradition, and he therefore devoted much of his career ...


Elementary Statutory Interpretation: Rethinking Legislative Intent And History, Victoria Nourse Jan 2014

Elementary Statutory Interpretation: Rethinking Legislative Intent And History, Victoria Nourse

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

This article argues that theorists and practitioners of statutory interpretation should rethink two very basic concepts—legislative intent and legislative history. Textualists urge that to look to legislative history is to seek an intent that does not exist. This article argues we should put this objection to bed because, even if groups do not have minds, they have the functional equivalent of intent: they plan by using internal sequential procedures allowing them to project their collective actions forward in time. What we should mean by legislative “intent” is legislative “context.” For a group, context includes how groups act—their procedures ...