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Law as Story: A Civic Concept of Law

Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal, Vol. 18, pp. 603-650, 2009

48 Pages Posted: 8 Dec 2009  

Palma Joy Strand

Creighton University Graduate School, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies

Date Written: November, 18 2009

Abstract

This article introduces a social constructionist civic concept of law, which emphasizes the story nature of law and the fact that as a complex social system law emerges from and is grounded in collaborative communications among citizens. In this view, if the law-story reflects the stories of a broad range of those for whom it purports to speak and acknowledges their agency in enacting it, it is more likely to be embraced by that community.

In applying the law-as-story complex social system approach to law to the doctrinal issue of political gerrymandering, the article explores the concept of voice - individuals making meaningful contributions to the law-story. In applying the approach to the doctrinal issue of race-based K-12 educational initiatives, the article illuminates the idea of resonance, the complement of voice, which captures the process of the law-story coming back to the individuals within a community.

Keywords: law-as-story, constructionist, concept of voice, story

JEL Classification: K40

Suggested Citation

Strand, Palma Joy, Law as Story: A Civic Concept of Law (November, 18 2009). Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal, Vol. 18, pp. 603-650, 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1508619

Palma Strand (Contact Author)

Creighton University Graduate School, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies ( email )

2500 California Plaza
Omaha, NE 68178
United States

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