Four Principles for Digital Expression (You Won’t Believe #3!)

At the dawn of the Internet’s emergence, the Supreme Court rhapsodized about its potential as a tool for free expression and political liberation. In ACLU v. Reno (1997), the Supreme Court adopted a bold vision of Internet expression to strike down a federal law – the Communications Decency Act – that restricted digital expression toContinue reading “Four Principles for Digital Expression (You Won’t Believe #3!)”

Candides and Cassandras: Technology and Free Speech on the Roberts Court

John Roberts assumed his position as Chief Justice of the United States just prior to the commencement of the October 2005 Term of the Supreme Court. That was seven years after Google was incorporated, one year before Facebook became available to the general public, and two years before Apple released the first iPhone. The twelveContinue reading “Candides and Cassandras: Technology and Free Speech on the Roberts Court”

Law’s Evolving Emergent Phenomena: From Rules of Social Intercourse to Rule of Law Society

Law involves institutions rooted in the history of a society that evolve in relation to surrounding social, psychological, cultural, economic, political, technological, and ecological influences. Law must be understood naturalistically, historically, and holistically. In my usage, naturalism views humans as social animals with natural traits and requirements, historicism presents law as historical manifestations that changeContinue reading “Law’s Evolving Emergent Phenomena: From Rules of Social Intercourse to Rule of Law Society”

Phenomenology, Colonialism, and the Administrative State

In A Realistic Theory of Law, Brian Tamanaha rejects the claim that universal legal principles exist, and its variant that essential features of law applicable to all societies can be identified. He argues that we should define law in accordance with our society’s ordinary usage of the term and analyze law in other societies onContinue reading “Phenomenology, Colonialism, and the Administrative State”

The Data of Jurisprudence

In contemporary jurisprudential writing, there is no lack of attention to method. Although I have participated in this activity, I have reservations about it, partly because it tends to be narcissistic, but more because it can encourage an unwelcome form of intellectual-boundary policing. Despite these reservations, I will offer in this essay some reflections onContinue reading “The Data of Jurisprudence”

The Pragmatist Tradition: Lessons for Legal Theorists

As you probably noticed, my title is ambiguous—deliberately so, because my purpose here is twofold: to teach legal theorists something of the pragmatist tradition in philosophy, its history, its character, and its content; and to suggest some of the ways in which the intellectual resources of that tradition can enhance our understanding of the law.Continue reading “The Pragmatist Tradition: Lessons for Legal Theorists”

A New Historical Jurisprudence?

In his provocative new book, A Realistic Theory of Law, Brian Tamanaha offers a variety of insightful analyses and conclusions that may shake up analytical jurisprudence for years to come. In the course of a relatively short and highly accessible work, Tamanaha challenges conceptual theories of law and conventional understandings of international law, clarifies importantContinue reading “A New Historical Jurisprudence?”