Sez Who? Critical Legal History Without a Privileged Position
Forthcoming in the Oxford Handbook of Historical Legal Research, Markus D. Dubber and Christopher Tomlins, editors
19 Pages Posted: 6 Apr 2017 Last revised: 11 Apr 2017
Date Written: April 6, 2017
Scholars active in the Critical Legal Studies movement of the 1980s regularly attacked the scholarship of liberal legalist scholars by using a variety of then contemporary epistemological theories that argued for the impossibility of any observer attaining a neutral position from which to observe social activities. Somewhat surprisingly, liberal legalist scholars seldom turned this criticism back at the work of CLS scholars who themselves never criticized their own work as they did that of other scholars. The examination of several pieces of CLS inspired history of labor law shows how engaging in such self-criticism might have further strengthened this very strong body of scholarship.
Keywords: Critical Legal Studies, U.S. labor history, U.S. economic history, capitalism, epistemology
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