* Special Event *

 Panel Discussion on The Force of Law Frederick SchauerUniversity of Virginia School of Law 

Thurs 7 November 2013 
5.00 pm start (preceded by tea and coffee outside the Law Cube from 4:45pm)

Law Cube, St Cross Building 



John GardnerGrant Lamond 

“That the law can force people to do things they do not want to do, and which are sometimes against their own interests or their own best (and not necessarily self-interested) judgment, might seem far too obvious to justify thinking or writing much about it. But here, as elsewhere, things are often not what they seem. For more than half a century, legal philosophers, drawing their inspiration from H.L.A. Hart, have questioned whether force, coercion, and sanctions are as important to understanding the nature of law as the ordinary person – the man on the Clapham omnibus, as the English quaintly put it – believes. […] …although the present examination of the role of coercion in explaining the character and distinctiveness of law will at times be philosophical or conceptual in style and method, it will, unashamedly, often break out of those boundaries defined by the discipline of philosophy, or accepted, rather more narrowly, by many contemporary practitioners of the philosophy of law. Some of what follows will be sociological, in the broadest sense, and more than some will draw on experimental psychological research. Some will make use of empirical and analytical conclusions from economics and political science. And none of what is to come will be a theory of law, or for that matter a theory of anything else. […] This book is thus an exploration of various aspects of law’s coercive dimension, pursued largely philosophically and analytically, but with some empirical assistance. It is an account and not a theory. It is certainly not a system. But perhaps a mere account can have some value.”


** The draft of the first five chapters of Professor Schauer's new book The Force of Law is also available on the JDG website: http://www.oxford-jdg.net/p/week-8_3.html This draft is only for the purposes of the JDG discussion, and is not for citation. Professor Schauer would like to concentrate on the methodological issues in 3.4 and 3.5, and the analysis in Chapter 4, with a bit on the empirical conclusions in Chapter 5.  **