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Comments on Coherence Theory in the Philosophy of Law

10 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2008  

William A. Edmundson

Georgia State University College of Law

Date Written: May 1994

Abstract

Coherentism, in philosophy generally, is of either an epistemological or a metaphysical type. The epistemological type responds to worries about foundationalism that have no serious counterpart within the philosophy of law. The metaphysical type is implausible generally, but has been put to use within the philosophy of law - by Ronald Dworkin in particular - to close up "gaps" in the law that provide an opening for purportedly worrisome exercises of judicial discretion. These remarks conclude with the suggestion that the conception of political legitimacy that underlies such worries is crude and unwarranted.

Keywords: coherence, coherentism, foundationalism, correspondence theory, Joseph Raz, Ronald Dworkin

JEL Classification: K00

Suggested Citation

Edmundson, William A., Comments on Coherence Theory in the Philosophy of Law (May 1994). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1147392 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1147392

William A. Edmundson (Contact Author)

Georgia State University College of Law ( email )

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Atlanta, GA 30302-4037
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HOME PAGE: http://law.gsu.edu/wedmundson/

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