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Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

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Constitutional Law

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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Tragedy Of Justice Scalia, Mitchell N. Berman Jan 2017

The Tragedy Of Justice Scalia, Mitchell N. Berman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Justice Antonin Scalia was, by the time of his death last February, the Supreme Court’s best known and most influential member. He was also its most polarizing, a jurist whom most students of American law either love or hate. This essay, styled as a twenty-year retrospective on A Matter of Interpretation, Scalia’s Tanner lectures on statutory and constitutional interpretation, aims to prod partisans on both sides of our central legal and political divisions to better appreciate at least some of what their opponents see—the other side of Scalia’s legacy. Along the way, it critically assesses Scalia ...


Immigration, Association, And The Family, Matthew J. Lister Jul 2010

Immigration, Association, And The Family, Matthew J. Lister

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In this paper I provide a philosophical analysis of family-based immigration. This type of immigration is of great importance, yet has received relatively little attention from philosophers and others doing normative work on immigration. As family-based immigration poses significant challenges for those seeking a comprehensive normative account of the limits of discretion that states should have in setting their own immigration policies, it is a topic that must be dealt with if we are to have a comprehensive account. In what follows I use the idea of freedom of association to show what is distinctive about family-based immigration and why ...


Popular Constitutionalism And The Rule Of Recognition: Whose Practices Ground U.S. Law?, Matthew D. Adler Jan 2006

Popular Constitutionalism And The Rule Of Recognition: Whose Practices Ground U.S. Law?, Matthew D. Adler

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The law within each legal system is a function of the practices of some social group. In short, law is a kind of socially grounded norm. H.L.A Hart famously developed this view in his book, The Concept of Law, by arguing that law derives from a social rule, the so-called “rule of recognition.” But the proposition that social facts play a foundational role in producing law is a point of consensus for all modern jurisprudents in the Anglo-American tradition: not just Hart and his followers in the positivist school, most prominently Joseph Raz and Jules Coleman, but also ...


Positivism And The Notion Of An Offense, Claire Oakes Finkelstein Jan 2000

Positivism And The Notion Of An Offense, Claire Oakes Finkelstein

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

While the United States Supreme Court has developed an elaborate constitutional jurisprudence of criminal procedure, it has articulated few constitutional doctrines of the substantive criminal law. The asymmetry between substance and procedure seems natural given the demise of Lochner and the minimalist stance towards due process outside the area of fundamental rights. This Article, however, argues that the "positivistic" approach to defining criminal offenses stands in some tension with other basic principles, both constitutional and moral. In particular, two important constitutional guarantees depend on the notion of an offense: the presumption of innocence and the ban on double jeopardy. Under ...