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Setting The Stage: A Quick Glance Back At The Journal's History, Julia L. Ernst 2010 Georgetown University Law Center

Setting The Stage: A Quick Glance Back At The Journal's History, Julia L. Ernst

Michigan Journal of Gender and Law

This symposium, organized by the Michigan Journal of Gender & Law, explored several cutting-edge topics related to its over-arching theme, "Rhetoric & Relevance: An Investigation into the Present and Future of Feminist Legal Theory." When the journal editors invited me to provide a few opening remarks, they informed me that: the goal of this symposium is to have a series of discussions about current happenings in the field of feminist legal scholarship, so that we may start to answer the question, "What's next?" These discussions will take place in the form of panels that focus on particular areas of the law ...


Aspects Of Deconstruction: The "Easy Case" Of The Under-Aged President, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Aspects Of Deconstruction: The "Easy Case" Of The Under-Aged President, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

When the deconstructionist says that all cases are to some degree problematic, the mainstream legal scholar gleefully pulls out a favorite crystal-clear case and asserts "not this one!" Judging from the law review commentary, the most popular of these "easy cases" concerns the constitutional mandate that the President shall be at least thirty-five years of age. Deconstructionists say that all interpretation depends on context. Radical deconstructionists add that, because contexts can change, there can be no such thing as a single interpretation of any text that is absolute and unchanging for all time.

easy case, deconstruction in law, US Constitution ...


Aspects Of Deconstruction: The Failure Of The Word "Bird", Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Aspects Of Deconstruction: The Failure Of The Word "Bird", Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Lawyers and judges often become impatient with those who dispute what they regard as the clear meaning of words. The meaning of words derives from the contexts in which they are employed, and we can never be certain of the context because we cannot enter into the minds of other persons to see the contexts to which their minds are adverting.


Aspects Of Deconstruction: Refuting Indeterminacy With One Bold Thought, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Aspects Of Deconstruction: Refuting Indeterminacy With One Bold Thought, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Deconstruction has already happened on the Supreme Court. Not only can no member of the Court really believe that "the law" (self-invented by the very Court it is supposed to govern!) can constrain the result in any individual case, but its members have also convinced themselves that they have no time to be concerned with dispensing justice to the parties. The justificatory legal language used in judicial opinions is not what our law teachers told us it was. The justificatory legal language is not provided to explain—much less constrain—the result in the case. Rather, it is a mode ...


Aspects Of Deconstruction: Thought Control In Xanadu, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Aspects Of Deconstruction: Thought Control In Xanadu, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Nearly every case in nearly every legal system is a case where the factfinder—that is, the judge or jury—must decide what was going on in the minds of the litigants. For example, every criminal case turns on mens rea—a guess that the defendant harbored thoughts amounting to criminal intent. Tort cases involve the intention of the defendant, or at least his reckless indifference to risk. Estate cases require the probate court to assess the intent of the testator. Antitrust cases involve the question whether there was an intent to form a combination in restraint of trade. I ...


Is International Law Part Of Natural Law?, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

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 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

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.


There Is No Norm Of Intervention Or Non-Intervention In International Law, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

There Is No Norm Of Intervention Or Non-Intervention In International Law, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Comments on Prof. Jianming Shen's position that humanitarian intervention is unlawful under international law and that there is a principle of non-intervention in international law that is so powerful that it amounts to a jus cogens prohibition.


The Effect Of Legal Theories On Judicial Decisions, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

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.


Legal Realism Explains Nothing, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Legal Realism Explains Nothing, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

I argue that American legal realism as derived from Oliver Wendell Holmes's prediction theory of law was misinterpreted, and that a deeper examination of law-as-prediction might help to reduce the pathology of judicial lawmaking that has been the unfortunate consequence of legal realism.


A Few Steps Toward An Explanatory Theory Of International Law, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

A Few Steps Toward An Explanatory Theory Of International Law, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

If any one sentence about international law has stood the test of time, it is Louis Henkin's: "almost all nations observe almost all principles of international law and almost all of their obligations almost all of the time." If this is true, why is this true? What makes it true? How do nations invent rules that then turn around and bind them? Are international rules simply pragmatic and expedient? Or do they embody values such as the need for international cooperation? Is international law a mixed game of conflict and cooperation because of its rules, or do its rules ...


The Path Of International Law, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

The Path Of International Law, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Is there a need for yet another student-edited international law journal? Practicing attorneys retrieve relevant articles when working on cases with international law issues, although they may be oblivious to the name of the journal or the prestige of the law school that supports it. For student editors, serving on a new international law journal is not just an intellectual experience; it is an empowering one. The more one looks into custom and treaty and the other sources of international law, the more one finds complexity and intellectual challenge.


The Speluncean Explorers--Further Proceedings, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

The Speluncean Explorers--Further Proceedings, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Lon L. Fuller's The Case of the Speluncean Explorers is a classic in jurisprudence. The case presents five judicial opinions which clash with each other and produce for the reader an exhilarating excursion into fundamental theories of law and the state and the role of courts vis-i-vis legislatures and executives. Though the issues articulated by Fuller are timeless, the past thirty years in jurisprudential scholarship have produced at least one major new vantage point—the "rights thesis".


The Limits Of Legal Realism, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

The Limits Of Legal Realism, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

This article will address some criticisms of legal realism, primarily those of H.L.A. Hart, that have been unanswered in the literature and have appeared to discredit the realist approach to law. The article will also articulate what I believe to be more difficult problems with legal realism.


Legal Uncertainty, Anthony D'Amato 2010 Northwestern University School of Law

Legal Uncertainty, Anthony D'Amato

Faculty Working Papers

Legal certainty decreases over time. Rules and principles of law become more and more uncertain in content and in application because legal systems are biased in favor of unravelling those rules and principles. In this article I attempt to show what these biases are, and why commentators who have argued that the law tends toward certainty are wrong, then describe various attempts which have been made at restoring certainty, and why these attempts have generally not worked. My conclusion is that these proposals are at best holding actions, and that the tendency toward increasing uncertainty in the law is inexorable.


La Protection Des Civils Dans Les Nouvelles Configurations Conflictuelles : Retour Au Droit Des Gens Ou Dépassement Du Droit International Humanitaire, Gregory Lewkowicz 2010 Université Libre de Bruxelles

La Protection Des Civils Dans Les Nouvelles Configurations Conflictuelles : Retour Au Droit Des Gens Ou Dépassement Du Droit International Humanitaire, Gregory Lewkowicz

Gregory Lewkowicz

In this paper, the development of alternative regulatory tools (codes of conduct, monitoring mechanisms, etc.) dealing with the protection of civilians during armed conflicts is scrutinized in the context of “new wars”. The paper analyses the connections between these alternative regulatory tools and classical international humanitarian law (IHL) instruments. The paper suggests that the profusion of alternative regulatory tools can help to disseminate classical IHL norms and to adapt them to contemporary warfare. The paper also envisages the possibility of a new “lex armorum” emerging from these new regulatory tools and challenging classical IHL.


Agency-Specific Precedents, Robert L. Glicksman, Richard E. Levy 2010 George Washington University Law School

Agency-Specific Precedents, Robert L. Glicksman, Richard E. Levy

Robert L. Glicksman

As a field of legal study and practice, administrative law rests on the premise that legal principles concerning agency structure, administrative process, and judicial review cut across multiple agencies. In practice, however, judicial precedents addressing the application of administrative law doctrines to a given agency tend to rely most heavily on other cases involving the same agency, and use verbal formulations or doctrinal approaches reflected in those cases. Over time, the doctrine often begins to develop its own unique characteristics when applied to that particular agency. These “agency-specific precedents” deviate from the conventional understanding of the relevant principles as a ...


The Hypocrisy Of The Acquiescence Canon, Blair C. Warner 2010 SelectedWorks

The Hypocrisy Of The Acquiescence Canon, Blair C. Warner

Blair C Warner

The Court applies the acquiescence canon to infer that an agency or judicial statutory interpretation is correct when followed by Congressional inaction. This Article will argue that this practice is based on a number of faulty assumptions. Moreover, the canon is applied inconsistently and creates perverse incentives for the legislature. The Article will then explore the Court’s guidance to lower courts against deriving similar inferences from the denial of certiorari, a similar form of inaction. Drawing parallels between Congress and the Court, and noting the many reasons why conclusions should not be drawn from apparent inactivity, this Article will ...


Unifying The Field Of Comparative Judicial Politics: Towards A General Theory Of Judicial Behaviour, Arthur Dyevre 2010 Max Planck Institute for International and Comparative Law

Unifying The Field Of Comparative Judicial Politics: Towards A General Theory Of Judicial Behaviour, Arthur Dyevre

Arthur Dyevre

The field of judicial politics had long been neglected by political scientists outside the United States. But the past twenty years have witnessed considerable change. There is now a large body of scholarship on European courts and judges. And judicial politics is on its way to become a sub-field of comparative politics in its own right. Examining the models used in the literature, this article suggests that the geographical convergence is also bringing about theoretical convergence. One manifestation of theoretical convergence is that models of judicial decision-making once deemed inapplicable in Europe are now used in studies of European courts ...


The Rule Of Law As An Institutional Ideal, Gianluigi Palombella 2010 University of Parma

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 ...


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