Defeasible Legal Argumentation

Forthcoming in Bongiovanni, G., Postema, G., Rotolo, A., Sartor, G., Valentini, C., and Walton, D. (2018). Handbook of Legal Reasoning and Argumentation. Springer.

49 Pages Posted: 14 Mar 2019

See all articles by Giovanni Sartor

Giovanni Sartor

European University Institute Law Department

Date Written: June 19, 2018

Abstract

This paper provides an analysis of defeasible legal reasoning as argumentation. It first gives a general account of the idea of defeasibility and introduces the idea of nonmonotonic reasoning. It then focuses on defeasible argumentation, considering how defeasible arguments can be constructed and how they can be defeated by rebutting and undercutting counterarguments. The dialectical interactions of defeasible arguments are further explored, focusing on reinstatement and reasoning about priorities. The idea of legal systems as the basis for argumentation frameworks is then investigated. The ways in which defeasibility has been understood in legal theory is finally addressed.

Keywords: Defeasibility, legal argument, nonmonotonic logic, legal reasoning

Suggested Citation

Sartor, Giovanni, Defeasible Legal Argumentation (June 19, 2018). Forthcoming in Bongiovanni, G., Postema, G., Rotolo, A., Sartor, G., Valentini, C., and Walton, D. (2018). Handbook of Legal Reasoning and Argumentation. Springer.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3337831 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3337831

Giovanni Sartor (Contact Author)

European University Institute Law Department ( email )

Via Bolognese 156 (Villa Salviati)
50-139 Firenze
ITALY

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