Objectivity and the Rule of Law

Objectivity and the Rule of Law

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What is objectivity? What is the rule of law? Are the operations of legal systems objective? If so, in what ways and to what degrees are they objective? Does anything of importance depend on the objectivity of law? These are some of the principal questions addressed by Matthew H. Kramer in this lucid and wide-ranging study that introduces readers to vital areas of philosophical enquiry. As Kramer shows, objectivity and the rule of law are complicated phenomena, each comprising a number of distinct though overlapping dimensions. Although the connections between objectivity and the rule of law are intimate, they are also densely multi-faceted.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 264 pages
  • 153 x 229 x 14mm | 356g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Worked examples or Exercises
  • 0521670101
  • 9780521670104
  • 1,699,308

Table of contents

1. Dimensions of objectivity; 2. Elements of the rule of law; 3. Objectivity and law's moral authority.
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Review quote

'The argument is ingenious, and stated with clarity ... Kramer's book shows plainly that legal positivism is not to be dismissed as mere pedantic quibbling and internecine disputation of no genuinely broad import. His book offers a vigorous aid to reflection upon the real and apparent attributes of law and legal systems, and how they might relate to questions of political morality.' Political Theory 'Professor Kramer disentangles the complicated notion of objectivity into six distinct conceptions, and differentiates the rule of law - the set of conditions necessary for any functioning legal system - from the Rule of Law - a moral judgment entrenched in the liberal-democratic tradition. ... The strength of this compelling account is Professor Kramer's effortless interweaving of positive and normative analysis.' Harvard Law Review 'Matthew Kramer's new book tackles questions of objectivity and the rule of law with his characteristic erudition, depth and acute insight. It is one of the first in an exciting series entitled Cambridge Introductions to Philosophy and Law under the editorship of William Edmundson. ... Kramer is most certainly to be congratulated for a fine work of scholarship.' Law Quarterly Review "In this focused and fluid new book, Professor Matthew Kramer explores the full terrain of th[e] important question [of law's objectivity]. Professor Kramer disentangles the complicated notion of objectivity into six distinct conceptions, and differentiates the rule of law -- the set of conditions necessary for any functioning legal system -- from the Rule of Law -- a moral judgment entrenched in the liberal-democratic tradition....The strength of this compelling account is Professor Kramer's effortless interweaving of positive and normative analysis....Though the principal audience of this book will be students of philosophy, law, and political science, Professor Kramer's clear prose welcomes lawyers and scholars who seek a fuller understanding of the relationship between law and objectivity."
- Harvard Law Review "Matthew Kramer's Objectivity and the Rule of Law...explores the manifold and complex connections that obtain between varieties of objectivity and the rule of law. In order to do so, Kramer commences by carefully examining the candidacy of eleven ostensible varities of objectivity, giving a succinct account of each of them....The argument is ingenious, and stated with clarity....Kramer's book shows plainly that legal positivism is not to be dismissed as mere pedantic quibbling and internecine disputation of no genuinely broad import. His book offers a vigorous aid to reflection upon the real and apparent attributes of law and legal systems, and how they might relate to questions of political morality."
- Claire Grant, University of Warwick, Political Theory "Matthew Kramer's new book tackles questions of objectivity and the rule of law with his characteristic erudition, depth and acute insight. It is one of the first in an exciting series entitled Cambridge Introductions to Philosophy and Law under the editorship of William Edmundson....Kramer is most certainly to be congratulated for a fine work of scholarship."
- Law Quarterly Review
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About Matthew Kramer

Matthew H. Kramer is Professor of Legal and Political Philosophy at Cambridge University; Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge; and Director of the Cambridge Forum for Legal and Political Philosophy. He is the author of ten books, most recently The Quality of Freedom and Where Law and Morality Meet, and the Legal Philosophy Editor for the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy (online edition).
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