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Realistic Socio-Legal Theory – Pragmatism and a Social Theory of Law - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Realistic Socio-Legal Theory: Pragmatism and a Social Theory of Law

Brian Z. Tamanaha


Drawing on philosophical pragmatism, the author formulates a framework for a realistic approach to socio-legal theory. The strengths of this approach are contrasted with that of the major schools of socio-legal theory by application to core issues in this area. Thus the author explores the problematic state of socio-legal studies, the relationship between behaviour and meaning, the notion of legal ideology, the problem of indeterminacy in rule following and application, and the structure of judicial decision making. These issues are tackled in a clear and concise fashion while articulating a s ... More

Keywords: philosophical pragmatism, behaviour, meaning, legal ideology, indeterminacy, rule following, rule application, judicial decision making, social theory, legal theory

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1999 Print ISBN-13: 9780198298250
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198298250.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Brian Z. Tamanaha, author
St John's University School of Law, New York