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Cover Understanding Jurisprudence
With a clear, engaging, and informal style, Understanding Jurisprudence is the perfect guide for students new to legal theory looking for a handy and stimulating starting point to this sometimes daunting subject. Key theories and theorists are introduced in a compact and practicable format, offering an accessible account of the central ideas without oversimplification. Further reading suggestions are included throughout, helping students to structure their research and navigate the jurisprudence’s extensive literature. Critical questions are also included in each chapter, to encourage students to think analytically about the law and legal theory, and the numerous debates that it generates. The author is an experienced teacher of jurisprudence and excels at providing a concise, student-friendly introduction to the subject, without avoiding the subtleties of this absorbing discipline. New to this, the book’s sixth edition, are: the most recent scholarship in several areas, including expanded discussions of theories of justice, globalization, and environmental protection, as well as a new section on judicial review and democracy. There are also updated suggested further reading lists and questions at the end of each chapter.

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Cover McCoubrey & White's Textbook on Jurisprudence

6. Post-Hart Analytical Philosophy of Law: Dworkin and Raz  

J. E. Penner and E. Melissaris

This chapter explores the main currents in legal philosophy following Hart, focusing on the work of Dworkin and Raz. It begins with overviews of the philosophies of law of Dworkin and Raz. The chapter then discusses Dworkin and Raz on rules and principles; Dworkin’s theory of law; whether lawyers are moral philosophers; Raz and the authority of law; and the impact of the work of Dworkin and Raz.

Chapter

Cover McCoubrey & White's Textbook on Jurisprudence

9. Law and Adjudication  

J. E. Penner and E. Melissaris

This chapter explores one of the central features of law, adjudication, and the theories attention to it has generated. It is organised as follows. Section 1 deals with American legal realism and its sceptical challenge to the idea that judges decide cases by applying determinate legal rules. Section 2 considers legal interpretivism, a theory of law originating in the work of Dworkin, and which began its life as a way of better accounting for the nature of legal argument and judicial decision-making. Finally, the chapter looks at the rule of law and the recent claim by Waldron that the values underlying adjudication deserve a more prominent place in our understanding of the value of law.

Chapter

Cover The Concept of Law

Postscript  

H. L. A. Hart

Celebrated for their conceptual clarity, titles in the Clarendon Law Series offer concise, accessible overviews of major fields of law and legal thought. This Postscript attempts to reply to some of the criticisms urged by R. M. Dworkin in many of the seminal articles collected in his Taking Rights Seriously (1977) and A Matter of Principle (1985) and in his book Law's Empire (1986). The focus is on Dworkin's criticisms because he has not only argued that nearly all the distinctive theses of this book are radically mistaken, but he has called in question the whole conception of legal theory and of what it should do which is implicit in the book. The first part of the Postscript is concerned with Dworkin's arguments. The second part considers the claims of a number of other critics that, in the author's exposition of some of his theses, there are not only obscurities and inaccuracies but at certain points actual incoherence and contradiction.

Chapter

Cover Understanding Jurisprudence

5. Dworkin and law’s moral claims  

This chapter discusses the essential elements of Dworkin’s theory of law. It focuses on Dworkin’s assault on positivism and his insistence upon the close relationship between morals and the law. By denying the positivist separation between law and morals, he expounds a theory that rejects the proposition that judges either do or should make law, and contends instead that judges have an obligation to find and express ‘the soundest theory of law’ on which to decide hard cases; and concludes that, since judges (who are unelected officials) do not make law, the judicial role is democratic and prospective. His approach is based on the notion that only by adopting this view of the judicial function can the law take rights seriously.