Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date

2007

Center/Program

Center for Law and Philosophy

Abstract

What is special about legal reasoning? In what way is it distinctive? How does it differ from reasoning in medicine, or engineering, physics, or everyday life? The answers range from the very ambitious to the modest. The ambitious claim that there is a special and distinctive legal logic, or legal ways of reasoning, modes of reasoning which set the law apart from all other disciplines. Opposing them are the modest, who claim that there is nothing special to legal reasoning, that reason is the same in all domains. According to them, only the contents of the law differentiate it from other areas of inquiry, whereas its mode of reasoning is the one common to all domains of inquiry.

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