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Evaluation and Legal Theory : Legal Theory Today - Julie Dickson

Evaluation and Legal Theory

Legal Theory Today

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If Raz and Dworkin disagree over how law should be characterised, how are we, their jurisprudential public, supposed to go about adjudicating between the rival theories which they offer us? To what considerations would those theorists themselves appeal in order to convince us that their accounts of law are accurate and successful? Moreover, what is it that makes an account of law successful? Evaluation and Legal Theory tackles methodological or meta-theoretical issues such as these, and does so via attempting to answer the question: to what extent, and in what sense, must a legal theorist make value judgements about his data in order to construct a successful theory of law? Dispelling the obfuscatory myth that legal positivism seeks a 'value-free' account of law, the author attempts to explain and defend Joseph Raz's position that evaluation is essential to successful legal theory, whilst refuting John Finnis and Ronald Dworkin's contentions that the legal theorist must morally evaluate and morally justify the law in order to properly explain its nature. The book does not claim to solve the many mysteries of meta-legal theory but does seek to contribute to and engender rigorous and focused debate on this topic.

The critical discussion proves to be rich and enlightening...an analytical legal theory of the type described by Dickson would be of considerable assistance to legal theorists in other disciplines. Brian Burge Hendrix Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence Vol. XVI, No.2 (July 2003) Evaluation and Legal Theory explores issues that are every bit as foundational to the study of law as set theory is to the study of mathematics. Also, Dickson does it with all the virtues that have been exemplified by other efforts in the area: clarity, depth, intellectual rigor, creativity, and subtlety...this book deserves a careful reading, not only from theorists in the field, but also from other legal academicians. Kenneth Einar Himma The Law and Politics Book Review June 2001 ...a useful introduction for undergraduates to some methodological complexities that might otherwise remain beyond their ken. The volume's admirably limpid prose will win the gratitude of students, who can quite painlessly get a glimpse of the importance and profundity of methodological problems. Matthew H. Kramer Cambridge Law Journal June 2001 Dickson writes of an important topic, raises many important issues, and seems to have the best of the argument on nearly every conclusion she reaches I think it is more praise than criticism that every part of the book left me simultaneously impressed and wanting more. Brian H Bix Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy November 2003

Acknowledgementsp. xi
What's the Point of Jurisprudence?p. 1
Introducing the Moral Evaluation Thesisp. 29
Indirectly Evaluative Legal Theory: Meeting Finnis' Challengep. 51
Finnis and the Moral Justification Thesisp. 71
The Beneficial Moral Consequences Thesis and an Introduction to Dworkinian Methodologyp. 83
What's the Point of Law? Dworkinian Methodology and the Argument from Law's Functionp. 103
Carrying on the Conversationp. 133
Indexp. 145
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781841130811
ISBN-10: 1841130818
Series: Legal Theory Today
Audience: BAC
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 160
Published: 5th June 2001
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.05 x 12.7  x 0.64
Weight (kg): 0.18
Edition Number: 1