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2017

Osgoode Legal Studies Research Paper Series

Karl Llewellyn

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Law And Digestion: A Brief History Of An Unpalatable Idea, Dan Priel Jan 2017

Law And Digestion: A Brief History Of An Unpalatable Idea, Dan Priel

Osgoode Legal Studies Research Paper Series

According to a familiar adage the legal realists equated law with what the judge had for breakfast. As this is sometimes used to ridicule the realists, prominent defenders of legal realism have countered that none of the realists ever entertained any such idea. In this short essay I show that this is inaccurate. References to this idea are found in the work of Karl Llewellyn and Jerome Frank, as well as in the works of their contemporaries, both friends and foes. But I also show the idea is older than the legal realists. One finds casual references to it in …