Nietzsche and the Law of the ‘The Other’: The Jew in Refraction

34 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2016

Date Written: August 19, 2016


This article asks what Nietzsche might tell us about the possibility and conditions of having knowledge of the legal other or ‘the Other’ in law. Although not a familiar formulation, this line of inquiry must be permitted to take shape because it goes directly to the most basic theoretical conundrum of comparative law. This conundrum lies well beyond the moribund debate over the purported ‘commensurability’ or ‘incommensurability’ of differing legal ‘systems’ or ‘traditions’. Instead it takes comparative lawyers to task by asking them to explain how they might know, or hope to have knowledge of legal otherness. In this article, I will attempt to furnish a preliminary and wholly tentative answer to this conundrum by mapping Nietzsche’s comparison of the Jewish and Christian legal interpretive traditions.

Suggested Citation

Meyers, Jeffrey, Nietzsche and the Law of the ‘The Other’: The Jew in Refraction (August 19, 2016). Available at SSRN: or

Jeffrey Meyers (Contact Author)

Schulich School of Law ( email )

6061 University Road
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H4R2

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