‘Legal Theory Lexicon: Indeterminacy, Determinacy, and Underdeterminacy’

“It all depends on your first year section, but many law students begin to get a sinking feeling about the law early in their first year. Does the law actually make any difference to the way cases are decided? Before law school, most of us would answer ‘Yes, of course’. And many law students start law school with the assumption that they will ‘learn the rules’. But in contemporary American legal education, many students encounter a thesis that goes something like this: ‘The laws have nothing to do with how cases come out. They are just window dressing that skillful lawyers and judges can manipulate to justify any decision they please’. This counterintuitive position is a version of the claim that law is indeterminate, or what we might call the Indeterminacy Thesis …” (more)

[Lawrence Solum, Legal Theory Blog, 8 December]

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