Between Reason and Power

University of Cincinnati Law Review, Spring 1999

Posted: 13 Sep 1999

See all articles by Linda Ross Meyer

Linda Ross Meyer

Quinnipiac University School of Law


Lawyers are trained rhetoricians. Yet, both lawyers and rhetoric are often understood as manipulative, not concerned with truth or "reason." This paper argues that the skill of the lawyer is not necessarily or essentially manipulative, but instead gives access to a special kind of truth akin to Kant's understanding of judgment. Using Kant's Critique of Judgment, the paper sketches a "sympathetic account" of rhetoric, explaining its emotional, metaphorical, and aesthetic elements as necessary ways to see how to apply abstract reason to concrete situations as judges and lawyers must.

JEL Classification: K1

Suggested Citation

Meyer, Linda R., Between Reason and Power. University of Cincinnati Law Review, Spring 1999. Available at SSRN:

Linda R. Meyer (Contact Author)

Quinnipiac University School of Law ( email )

275 Mt. Carmel Ave.
Hamden, CT 06518
United States
203-287-3281 (Phone)
203-287-3209 (Fax)

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