The Poverty of Interpretive Universalism: Toward the Reconstruction of Legal Theory

The Poverty of Interpretive Universalism: Toward the Reconstruction of Legal Theory, 72 Texas Law Review 1 (1993)

56 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2017  

Dennis Patterson

European University Institute; Rutgers University School of Law, Camden; Swansea University School of Law; European University Institute - Department of Law (LAW)

Date Written: 1993

Abstract

This article explores the intricacies of interpretive universalism - the idea that all understanding is a matter of interpretation - by examining the work of two exemplary proponents of its virtues, Ronald Dworkin and Stanley Fish. One would be hard-pressed, indeed, to find two other contemporary legal theorists who have done more to bring to the center of attention questions of meaning, truth, and textuality. Despite their several, sometimes bitterly debated differences on interpretive and jurisprudential questions, Dworkin and Fish are allied in the deepest level of philosophical conviction. As the arguments that follow demonstrate, interpretive universalism, and the manifold claims that issue from it, engender a seriously false and misleading picture of law.

Suggested Citation

Patterson, Dennis, The Poverty of Interpretive Universalism: Toward the Reconstruction of Legal Theory (1993). The Poverty of Interpretive Universalism: Toward the Reconstruction of Legal Theory, 72 Texas Law Review 1 (1993). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2915058

Dennis Patterson (Contact Author)

European University Institute ( email )

Villa Schifanoia
133 via Bocaccio
Firenze (Florence), Tuscany 50014
Italy

Rutgers University School of Law, Camden ( email )

Camden, NJ 08102-1203
United States
856-225-6369 (Phone)
856-751-8752 (Fax)

Swansea University School of Law

Singleton Park
Swansea, SA2 8PP
United Kingdom

European University Institute - Department of Law (LAW) ( email )

Via Boccaccio 121 (Villa Schifanoia)
I-50122 Firenze
ITALY

Paper statistics

Downloads
20
Abstract Views
57