Empathy and Perspective in Judging: The Honorable William C. Canby, Jr
University of Arizona - James E. Rogers College of Law
Arizona State Law Journal, Vol. 33, No. 4, 2001
Deciding any given case likely requires a judge to rely on a combination of different abilities and knowledge including a firm understanding of rules of law, statutes, and precedent; an appreciation for legal theory and policy; and an incorporation of common sense and judgment informed by an empathic understanding of context. A search of the Seventh Circuit's opinion for any empathic understanding of Olinger's circumstances uncovers just one example in the final paragraph. William C. Canby, Jr.'s Unique Contributions to the Development of Federal Indian Law. The area of federal Indian law is one of the more arcane and intellectually challenging of American jurisprudence. Today, Indian law issues are receiving increased attention as a result of the nation's interest in Indian gaming activities. Were Canby's efforts on the Court the entire embodiment of his contribution to federal Indian law, they would be noteworthy. In the first edition, he distills federal Indian law into four themes and returns to these themes throughout the text. Even those judges who take a markedly different view of Indian law issues respect his talents and scholarship. Whether it is in his judicial decision making or his academic scholarship, his writings will continue to advance the field of federal Indian law.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 30
Keywords: Decision making, William Canby, judging
Date posted: July 16, 2009
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