Trinity Term 2012
Do We Need Substantive Law?
Luís Duarte d’Almeida
Churchill College, Cambridge; and University of Girona
In a previous presentation to the JDG I proposed and defended what I called a ‘proof-based’ account of legal exceptions. I then suggested that no ‘substantive’ representation could be given of the conditions of judicial decisions when exceptions happen to be at play. Shortly after that, presenting a later version of the same paper in another context, I received the comment that my proposed account of exceptions committed me to the more wide-ranging view that ‘there is no substantive law’. I didn’t take this as a reductio of my characterisation of exceptions. The underlying suggestion was rather, I think, that the claim that there is no substantive law is too strong a thesis to endorse simply on the basis of a theory of exceptions: I would therefore be well-advised to explore the more general jurisprudential implications of the account, and to work out more precisely what, exactly, its consequences were for the idea of the substantive law. That is the purpose of the present paper. Its topic, though, is not quite whether ‘there is’ substantive law. For reasons that I will try to make clear, I believe that the problem should be formulated instead by asking whether we need substantive law. Hence the question in my title (although my title is itself ambiguous, as I will explain). I will answer negatively.
Hilary Term 2012
Permissibility, Practical Reason and Pre-emptive Harm
Patent Claim Construction in the United States as a Form of Legal Interpretation
The Steward: Legal Institution and/or
Incommensurability, Practices and Points of View: Revitalizing H.L.A. Hart's Practice Theory of Rules
Eric J. Miller
The Procedural Democratic Legitimacy of Constitutional Courts
Is No One Responsible for Global Environmental Tragedy?
Climate Change as a Challenge to Our Ethical Concepts
preceded by drinks at 5:15pm
Michaelmas Term 2011