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The Rise and Fall of The Western Legal Tradition / Legal Reasoning & Adjudication


The Rise and Fall of The Western Legal Tradition / Legal Reasoning & Adjudication

Chaire Villey 2019 - Pr Duncan Kennedy

Du jeudi 13 juin 2019 au vendredi 14 juin 2019



Titulaire de la Chaire Villey 2019, Duncan Kennedy, Carter Professor of General Jurisprudence (Emeritus), Harvard Law School a choisi de consacrer sa chaire à deux séances de discussion sur ses travaux avec des doctorants et étudiants avancés




Jeudi 13 juin 2019


The Rise and Fall of The Western Legal Tradition


16h00 : Professor Duncan Kennedy


I) Method and objectives

Method of analysis : selection of sources and the research method in law
The concept of legal consciousness and the problem of unity within the system


II) The classical legal thoughtat the end of the 19th century : neutral private lawand state neutrality

Creating the public-private divide and defending the minimal state
Expression of this ideology in contract law


III) The realist and CLS critique of private law in the 20th century : ideology, background rules and state action

Questioning the public-private divide and state neutrality : conflicting considerations model, background rules of permission and how they directly structure economic struggle for ressources
A public law critique of contractlaw : redefining the freedom of contract


IV) Current usefulness of realist’s and CLS’ insights

What about Law and Economics ?

19h00 : Fin de la 1ère session


Vendredi 14 juin 2019


Legal Reasoning & Adjudication


16h00 : Professor Duncan Kennedy


I) Terms of the debate

Legal elite/intelligentsia


II) Adjudication vs Legislation : The specificity of the judge’s function

The distinction between legislation and adjudication from a CLS’s perspective
What are the specific constraints in adjudication ? Questionning the CLS’s theory of interpretation in comparison with the US and french realist approach


III) The denial of ideology in adjudication and its consequences

Meaning and scope of themyth of the presence of ideology in adjudication : Birth and survival of this collective denial
Effects of adjudication in this context : moderation, empowerment, legitimation


IV) The critique of rights

Use of rights in adjudication and the influence of partisanship
Loss of faith in rights

19h00 : Fin de la 2ème session



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Institut Michel Villey
Salle de lecture, 5e étage
1, rue d’Ulm
75005 Paris