Book symposium: Julie Dickson's "Elucidating Law"


On 11 October 2022 the Jurisprudence Discussion Group hosted a book symposium of Elucidating Law (OUP 2022) by Julie Dickson, with comments from Tom Adams (Oxford) and Veronica Rodriguez-Blanco (Surrey).

This is the latest book to be published in Oxford’s Legal Philosophy series, edited by Timothy Endicott, Leslie Green and the late John Gardner. 

Book description: 

What are the aims of legal philosophy? Which questions should it seek to address? How should legal philosophers approach and engage with their subject-matter, and what constraints are incumbent on them as they do so? What are the criteria of success of theories of law, and how do we know if they have been met? Can there be progress in legal philosophy?

In Elucidating Law, Julie Dickson addresses these and other questions concerning the methodology, or the philosophy, of legal philosophy and offers her own distinctive response to them. The book advocates that legal philosophers should espouse an approach that Dickson terms 'Indirectly Evaluative Legal Philosophy.' This distinctive approach can facilitate legal philosophers' understanding of aspects of the nature of law, whilst avoiding prematurely or inappropriately regarding law as inherently morally valuable. Law is a powerful, systemic, and institutionalized social tool. It should be understood in a manner appropriate to its character.

Video of the talk: