Modern legal theory contains a wide range of approaches and topics: from economic analysis of law to feminist legal theory to traditional analytical legal philosophy to a range of theories about justice. This healthy variety of jurisprudential work has created a problem: students and theorists working in one tradition may have difficulty understanding the concepts and terminology of a different tradition. This book works to make terminology and ways of thinking accessible.
This dictionary covers topics from the 'autonomy of law' to the 'will theory of rights', from 'autopoiesis' to 'wealth maximization', and from 'John Austin' to 'Ludwig Wittgenstein'. The most important concepts and ideas are presented in a simple dictionary format. There are also many longer entries, where the initial definition gives an accessible explanation, but the entry goes on to give more detailed information about the history of an idea and the debates currently surrounding it.
`The one book on Philosophy of Law I urge you to buy is A Dictionary of Legal Theory..., a work which you will find accessible and easy to understand ... The great overall contribution by Brian H. Bix, in his books on the philosophy of law, is that he takes concepts that were previously abstract and dry and make them accessible, comprehensible, and interesting! Bix has a talent for making the field of legal philosophy available to the non-expert reader in
a thorough, lucid, and engaging way. His genius also is in his ability to take a complex legal problem and go to the jugular instantly, dissecting the problems component parts with surgical skill and
providing an excellent analysis and solution and I look forward to the publication of his many other works...'
Howard Wieder, Queens Bar Bulletin
`[This] Dictionary of Legal Theory should be on the shelf of anyone with an interest in legal theory. Bix has an exceptional ability to provide lucid definitions of even the most recondite theoretical concepts. This is more than just expositional skill: he often does real philosophical work in clarifying and distinguishing complex theoretical issues.'
Dan Farber, Sho Sato Professor of Law, University of California at Berkeley
`Brian Bix has produced a useful and instructive explanation of an impressive variety of terms, concepts, and thinkers. Highly recommended for both students and teachers of law, and for generalists and specialists alike.'
Cass R. Sunstein, Karl N. Llewellyn Distinguished Service Professor of Jurisprudence, University of Chicago Law School
`'...legal theory now covers a diversity of approaches and traditions,and mutual understanding is frequently obstructed by the difficulty of grasping the outlook and terminology of alternative approaches...this is a helpful and well-executed book...it will be an invaluable tool for scholars and students alike.''
Dr Nigel Simmonds, University of Cambridge
`Works of this type are impressive enough when the result of collective endeavour. That Brian Bix has produced this dictionary single-handedly is an especially admirable accomplishment. Considerable thought has clearly gone into determining which themes merit coverage and what needs to be said about them. It takes no genius to predict that jurisprudence students, and their teachers, will be keeping this volume close to hand.'
Professor Neil Duxbury, University of Manchester
`...lucid, succinct, and accurate throughout. Bix sympathetically presents the central concepts and elucidates the meaning of unfamiliar terms, for contemporary schools of legal thought, including classical, religious and secular natural law traditions, various forms of 18th to 21st century legal positivism, and contemporary critical movements, ranging from Feminism and Critical Race Theory to Law and Economics and Legal Pragmatism... a useful resource for
legal theorists and legal scholars, and a helpful guide to legal writing for scholars from related disciplines...'
Robin West, Georgetown University
`...a pleasure to read and an eminently suitable source of basic information about topics and trends in legal theory and philosophy...his clear accounts and explanations of legal theoretical concepts and controversies by no means "dumb down" the result...[a] rare dictionary that one easily could and indeed should read from cover to cover to enjoy the full extent of its value...A Dictionary of Legal Theory offers high value to a wide audience, including
scholars in law and other disciplines, students, and interested readers. Professors will want to assign it to their introductory courses in legal philosophy, and librarians will employ it at their reference
Dean C. Rowan, International Journal of Legal Information