Nietzsche in Law's Cathedral: Beyond Reason and Postmodernism
44 Pages Posted: 11 Aug 2003
Date Written: June 30, 2003
Nietzsche had very little to say about law and what he did say is fragmentary and sporadic. Nietzsche's philosophy, however, offers a basis for theorizing about law. I use Nietzsche's important works to interpret two major movements in legal thought. The first part of the paper examines how Nietzsche's philosophy augments our understanding of deontological theories about the law. Nietzsche produced a substantial ethical theory. The second part of the paper examines how Nietzsche's philosophy helps us to understand law and economics. Nietzsche had a great deal to say about the intellectual predecessor to law and economics, utilitarianism, and his critique of utilitarianism offers insights into law and economics and its intellectual history. Further, Nietzsche elaborated a philosophy of science that extends to and offers insights about "analytical" social sciences such as economics.
Keywords: legal theory, Nietzsche
JEL Classification: K1, K10, K19
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation