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When Did Ignorance Become a Point of View?: Postmodern Legal Thought and Behavioral Biology

59 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2011  

Edwin S. Fruehwald

Independent

Date Written: February 24, 2011

Abstract

Postmodernism is a major influence on contemporary jurisprudence. This paper will critique Postmodern Legal Thought using insights from behavioral biology. As this paper will show, Postmodernism is based on the denial of human nature – it is based on ignorance (lack of knowledge), and it has had a pernicious effect on the law.

Part I of this article will examine Postmodern Legal Thought. This Part will include a traditional critique of Postmodernism and its most important element – strong moral relativism. Parts II and III will demonstrate how insights of behavioral biology weaken the foundations of Postmodern Legal Thought. Part II will demonstrate how behavioral biology has destroyed the Blank Slate (social constructionist) theory of human nature upon which Postmodernism is based. Part III will show the existence of neurocognitive (innate) universals in the human mind, which destroys the strong moral relativism underlying Postmodernism. Finally, Part IV will present an alternative to Postmodernism’s radical political theories, based on behavioral biology.

Keywords: postmodern, biology, jurisprudence, blank slate, moral relativism

Suggested Citation

Fruehwald, Edwin S., When Did Ignorance Become a Point of View?: Postmodern Legal Thought and Behavioral Biology (February 24, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1769242 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1769242

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