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http://ssrn.com/abstract=1846524
 
 

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Discipline and Method: The Making of the Will of the People


Barry Friedman


New York University School of Law

May 19, 2011

Michigan State Law Review, Vol. 2010, p. 877-920
NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 11-33

Abstract:     
Despite the oft-noted move toward multi-disciplinarity, it remains the case that scholars tend to defend their own methodological turf. This can be unfortunate; no particular discipline or methodology is inherently worthy. The methodological questions regarding any given piece of scholarship should be (a) whether the project is talking an unanswered question of some importance; (b) whether the tools utilized are reliable, i.e., apt to teach us something about that question; and (c) whether the conclusions are sound. I address these questions in response to a symposium held concerning my book, The Will of the People: How Public Opinion Has Influenced the Supreme Court and Shaped the Meaning of the Constitution. They symposium, at Michigan State University School of Law, brought together scholars from history, politics and law. In this piece I explain the intellectual journey that led to The Will of the People, and respond to critics, on both substantive and methodological grounds. The focus, however, is on the issue that leads this abstract: what are the “right” tools in a multi-disciplinary world?

Number of Pages in PDF File: 45

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Date posted: May 20, 2011  

Suggested Citation

Friedman, Barry, Discipline and Method: The Making of the Will of the People (May 19, 2011). Michigan State Law Review, Vol. 2010, p. 877-920; NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 11-33. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1846524

Contact Information

Barry Friedman (Contact Author)
New York University School of Law ( email )
40 Washington Square South
Room 317
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States
212-998-6293 (Phone)
212-995-4030 (Fax)
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