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A Matter Of Interpretation by Elizabeth Mac Donald

Title A Matter of Interpretation
Author Elizabeth Mac Donald
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2021-06
Category Church and state
Total Pages 400
ISBN 1912054728
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

It's 13th-century Europe and a young monk, Michael Scot, has been asked by the Holy Roman Emperor to translate the works of Aristotle and recover his "lost" knowledge. The Scot sets to his task, traveling from the Emperor's Italian court to the translation schools of Toledo and from there to the Moorish library of Córdoba. But when the Pope deems the translations heretical, the Scot refuses to desist. So begins a battle for power between Church and State--one that has shaped how we view the world today.

A Matter Of Interpretation by Antonin Scalia

Title A Matter of Interpretation
Author Antonin Scalia
Publisher Princeton University Press
Release Date 2018-01-30
Category Law
Total Pages 200
ISBN 9781400882953
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

We are all familiar with the image of the immensely clever judge who discerns the best rule of common law for the case at hand. According to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, a judge like this can maneuver through earlier cases to achieve the desired aim—“distinguishing one prior case on his left, straight-arming another one on his right, high-stepping away from another precedent about to tackle him from the rear, until (bravo!) he reaches the goal—good law." But is this common-law mindset, which is appropriate in its place, suitable also in statutory and constitutional interpretation? In a witty and trenchant essay, Justice Scalia answers this question with a resounding negative. In exploring the neglected art of statutory interpretation, Scalia urges that judges resist the temptation to use legislative intention and legislative history. In his view, it is incompatible with democratic government to allow the meaning of a statute to be determined by what the judges think the lawgivers meant rather than by what the legislature actually promulgated. Eschewing the judicial lawmaking that is the essence of common law, judges should interpret statutes and regulations by focusing on the text itself. Scalia then extends this principle to constitutional law. He proposes that we abandon the notion of an everchanging Constitution and pay attention to the Constitution's original meaning. Although not subscribing to the “strict constructionism” that would prevent applying the Constitution to modern circumstances, Scalia emphatically rejects the idea that judges can properly “smuggle” in new rights or deny old rights by using the Due Process Clause, for instance. In fact, such judicial discretion might lead to the destruction of the Bill of Rights if a majority of the judges ever wished to reach that most undesirable of goals. This essay is followed by four commentaries by Professors Gordon Wood, Laurence Tribe, Mary Ann Glendon, and Ronald Dworkin, who engage Justice Scalia’s ideas about judicial interpretation from varying standpoints. In the spirit of debate, Justice Scalia responds to these critics. Featuring a new foreword that discusses Scalia’s impact, jurisprudence, and legacy, this witty and trenchant exchange illuminates the brilliance of one of the most influential legal minds of our time.

Judging Statutes by Robert A. Katzmann

Title Judging Statutes
Author Robert A. Katzmann
Publisher Oxford University Press
Release Date 2014-08-14
Category Law
Total Pages 256
ISBN 9780199362158
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In an ideal world, the laws of Congress--known as federal statutes--would always be clearly worded and easily understood by the judges tasked with interpreting them. But many laws feature ambiguous or even contradictory wording. How, then, should judges divine their meaning? Should they stick only to the text? To what degree, if any, should they consult aids beyond the statutes themselves? Are the purposes of lawmakers in writing law relevant? Some judges, such as Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, believe courts should look to the language of the statute and virtually nothing else. Chief Judge Robert A. Katzmann of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit respectfully disagrees. In Judging Statutes, Katzmann, who is a trained political scientist as well as a judge, argues that our constitutional system charges Congress with enacting laws; therefore, how Congress makes its purposes known through both the laws themselves and reliable accompanying materials should be respected. He looks at how the American government works, including how laws come to be and how various agencies construe legislation. He then explains the judicial process of interpreting and applying these laws through the demonstration of two interpretative approaches, purposivism (focusing on the purpose of a law) and textualism (focusing solely on the text of the written law). Katzmann draws from his experience to show how this process plays out in the real world, and concludes with some suggestions to promote understanding between the courts and Congress. When courts interpret the laws of Congress, they should be mindful of how Congress actually functions, how lawmakers signal the meaning of statutes, and what those legislators expect of courts construing their laws. The legislative record behind a law is in truth part of its foundation, and therefore merits consideration.

Reading Law by Antonin Scalia

Title Reading Law
Author Antonin Scalia
Publisher West Group
Release Date 2012
Category Law
Total Pages 567
ISBN 031427555X
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In this groundbreaking book, Scalia and Garner systematically explain all the most important principles of constitutional, statutory, and contractual interpretation in an engaging and informative style with hundreds of illustrations from actual cases. Is a burrito a sandwich? Is a corporation entitled to personal privacy? If you trade a gun for drugs, are you using a gun in a drug transaction? The authors grapple with these and dozens of equally curious questions while explaining the most principled, lucid, and reliable techniques for deriving meaning from authoritative texts. Meanwhile, the book takes up some of the most controversial issues in modern jurisprudence. What, exactly, is "textualism?" Why is "strict construction" a bad thing? What is the true doctrine of "originalism?" And which is more important: the spirit of the law, or the letter? The authors write with a well-argued point of view that is definitive yet nuanced, straightforward yet sophisticated.

Matters Of Principle by Richard S. Markovits

Title Matters of Principle
Author Richard S. Markovits
Publisher NYU Press
Release Date 1998-07
Category Law
Total Pages 456
ISBN 9780814755136
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The United States is generally believed to be a liberal, rights-based culture. In such a society, Richard S. Markovits asserts, arguments of moral principle are the dominant type of legitimate legal argument. Markovits analyzes various rights associated with our society's basic duties of showing appropriate, equal respect for all creatures capable of moral integrity and appropriate, equal concern for their actualizing this potential. Ranging widely and covering in depth such flashpoint issues as educational rights, minimum real-income rights, privacy rights, abortion, parenting, sexual liberties, and the right to die, Matters of Principle is a deeply engaged and thoughtful work, certain to be controversial and much debated.

Active Liberty by Stephen Breyer

Title Active Liberty
Author Stephen Breyer
Publisher Vintage
Release Date 2007-12-18
Category Political Science
Total Pages 176
ISBN 9780307424617
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A brilliant new approach to the Constitution and courts of the United States by Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.For Justice Breyer, the Constitution’s primary role is to preserve and encourage what he calls “active liberty”: citizen participation in shaping government and its laws. As this book argues, promoting active liberty requires judicial modesty and deference to Congress; it also means recognizing the changing needs and demands of the populace. Indeed, the Constitution’s lasting brilliance is that its principles may be adapted to cope with unanticipated situations, and Breyer makes a powerful case against treating it as a static guide intended for a world that is dead and gone. Using contemporary examples from federalism to privacy to affirmative action, this is a vital contribution to the ongoing debate over the role and power of our courts.

Title The Judiciary Discrimination Law and Statutory Interpretation
Author Michael Connolly
Publisher Routledge
Release Date 2018-08-30
Category Law
Total Pages 261
ISBN 9780429834790
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In 1856, the US Supreme Court denied Dred Scott, now free of slavery, his Constitutional rights, solely because he was black. According to the Court, when the Constitution was drafted, some 60 years earlier, its authors would not have intended that ‘a subordinate and inferior class of beings’ qualified as citizens of the United States. Thus, the meaning of language drafted over half a century before was frozen in time. This case, perhaps more than any other, demonstrates that the matter of statutory interpretation is critical, technical, and, sometimes, highly emotive. The case is not a mere nugget from history to indulge our disgust with values of another age, and with it a satisfaction of our progress to today’s higher moral ground. It is the unfortunate case that the senior courts of England continue to produce highly contentious interpretations of our equality and discrimination laws. This book examines these cases from the perspective of statutory interpretation, the judge’s primary function. The scrutiny finds the judgments technically flawed, overcomplicated, excessively long, and often unduly restrictive. As such, this book explains how the cases should have been resolved – using conventional methods of interpretation; this would have produced simpler, technically sound judgments. Rather like the case of Dred Scott, these were easy cases producing bad law.

Title Purposive Interpretation in Law
Author Aharon Barak
Publisher Princeton University Press
Release Date 2011-10-16
Category Law
Total Pages 448
ISBN 9781400841264
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

This book presents a comprehensive theory of legal interpretation, by a leading judge and legal theorist. Currently, legal philosophers and jurists apply different theories of interpretation to constitutions, statutes, rules, wills, and contracts. Aharon Barak argues that an alternative approach--purposive interpretation--allows jurists and scholars to approach all legal texts in a similar manner while remaining sensitive to the important differences. Moreover, regardless of whether purposive interpretation amounts to a unifying theory, it would still be superior to other methods of interpretation in tackling each kind of text separately. Barak explains purposive interpretation as follows: All legal interpretation must start by establishing a range of semantic meanings for a given text, from which the legal meaning is then drawn. In purposive interpretation, the text's "purpose" is the criterion for establishing which of the semantic meanings yields the legal meaning. Establishing the ultimate purpose--and thus the legal meaning--depends on the relationship between the subjective and objective purposes; that is, between the original intent of the text's author and the intent of a reasonable author and of the legal system at the time of interpretation. This is easy to establish when the subjective and objective purposes coincide. But when they don't, the relative weight given to each purpose depends on the nature of the text. For example, subjective purpose is given substantial weight in interpreting a will; objective purpose, in interpreting a constitution. Barak develops this theory with masterful scholarship and close attention to its practical application. Throughout, he contrasts his approach with that of textualists and neotextualists such as Antonin Scalia, pragmatists such as Richard Posner, and legal philosophers such as Ronald Dworkin. This book represents a profoundly important contribution to legal scholarship and a major alternative to interpretive approaches advanced by other leading figures in the judicial world.

Title Statutory and Common Law Interpretation
Author Kent Greenawalt
Publisher Oxford University Press
Release Date 2012-11-29
Category Law
Total Pages 391
ISBN 9780199756148
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Kent Greenwalt's second volume on aspects of legal interpretation analyzes statutory and common law interpretation, suggesting that multiple factors are important for each, and that the relation between them influences both. The book argues against any simple "textualism," claiming that even reader understanding of statutes depends partly on perceived intent. In respect to common law interpretation, use of reasoning by analogy is defended and any simple dichotomy of "holding" and "dictum" is resisted.

Constitutional Dialogues by Louis Fisher

Title Constitutional Dialogues
Author Louis Fisher
Publisher Princeton University Press
Release Date 2014-07-14
Category Law
Total Pages 318
ISBN 9781400859573
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Who makes constitutional law? Is constitutional doctrine the monopoly of the courts? In accessible and persuasive prose Louis Fisher explains that constitutional law is not solely or even primarily the Supreme Court's "final word" but rather a richly political convergence of separate interpretations. With a broad range of examples, he argues that constitutional principles emerge from a dialogue among all three branches of government--executive, legislative, and judicial. Important contributions also come from the states and the general public. Fisher identifies executive and legislative initiatives in many areas of constitutional significance. Where there is litigation, the Court generally upholds these initiatives or may avoid making a constitutional decision by using "threshold devices." On those rare occasions when the Supreme Court exercises judicial review and strikes down a presidential or congressional action, it is usually only a matter of time before the proposal is revived and the dialogue begins again. Originally published in 1988. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

A Matter Of Principle by Ronald Dworkin

Title A Matter of Principle
Author Ronald Dworkin
Publisher Harvard University Press
Release Date 1985
Category Philosophy
Total Pages 425
ISBN 0674554612
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Essays examine the political basis of law, legal interpretation, economic factors in law, reverse discrimination, and censorship

Not Quite Supreme by Dennis Baker

Title Not Quite Supreme
Author Dennis Baker
Publisher McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP
Release Date 2010-01-01
Category Law
Total Pages 86
ISBN 9780773580718
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Baker argues that coordinate interpretation - a model which requires both elected and appointed officials to interpret the Charter - allows for the creation of a more robust democracy, alleviating some of the tension between constitutionalism and democracy while limiting judicial activism. Drawing on literature from Montesquieu to recent court decisions, Not Quite Supreme gives an extensive critique of both Canadian and American judicial models and explores the tensions between the separation of powers in both countries. Not Quite Supreme is a fresh and substantial contribution to the debate, advancing a new argument in support of a more diverse tradition of legal decision making in Canada that makes the constitution, rather than individual decisions of the Court, its cornerstone.

Title The Theory and Practice of Statutory Interpretation
Author Frank B. Cross
Publisher Stanford University Press
Release Date 2008-11-19
Category Law
Total Pages 248
ISBN 9780804769815
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Today, statutes make up the bulk of the relevant law heard in federal courts and arguably represent the most important source of American law. The proper means of judicial interpretation of those statutes have been the subject of great attention and dispute over the years. This book provides new insights into the theory and practice of statutory interpretation by courts. Cross offers the first comprehensive analysis of statutory interpretation and includes extensive empirical evidence of Supreme Court practice. He offers a thorough review of the active disputes over the appropriate approaches to statutory interpretations, namely whether courts should rely exclusively on the text or also examine the legislative history. The book then considers the use of these approaches by the justices of the recent Rehnquist Court and the degree to which they were applied by the justices, either sincerely or in pursuit of an ideological agenda.

Justice For Hedgehogs by Ronald Dworkin

Title Justice for Hedgehogs
Author Ronald Dworkin
Publisher Harvard University Press
Release Date 2011-05-03
Category Philosophy
Total Pages 528
ISBN 9780674071964
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In Dworkin’s master work, the central thesis is that all areas of value depend on one another. This is one, big thing that the hedgehog knows, in contrast to the fox, who knows many little things. Dworkin’s understanding of the relationship—between ethics, morality, and political morality—is significantly revised and also greatly elaborated. He argues that “dignity” is the essential core of living well and that a satisfactory account of dignity would, in turn, point to two principles. The first states that it is objectively important that each person’s life go well; and the second that each person has a special responsibility for identifying what counts as success in his or her own life. Dworkin believes that values cohere and that in order to defend that coherence he has to take up a broad variety of philosophical issues that are not normally treated in one book. He discusses the metaphysics of value, the character of truth, the nature of interpretation, the conditions of agreement and disagreement, the phenomenon of moral responsibility and the problem of free will as well as more substantive issues of ethical, moral and legal theory.

Title Antonin Scalia s Jurisprudence
Author Ralph A. Rossum
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2006
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 298
ISBN UOM:39015063244746
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

"This book is the first comprehensive, reasoned, and sympathetic analysis of how Scalia has decided cases during his entire nineteen-year Supreme Court tenure. Ralph Rossum focuses on Scalia's more than 600 Supreme Court opinions and dissents - carefully wrought, passionately argued, and filled with well-turned phrases - which portray him as an eloquent defender of an "original meaning" jurisprudence. He also includes analyses of Scalia's Court of Appeals opinions for the D.C. Circuit, his major law review articles as a law professor and judge, and his provocative book, A Matter of Interpretation."--Jacket.

Dynamic Statutory Interpretation by William N. Eskridge

Title Dynamic Statutory Interpretation
Author William N. Eskridge
Publisher Harvard University Press
Release Date 1994
Category Law
Total Pages 438
ISBN 0674218787
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Contrary to traditional theories of statutory interpretation, which ground statutes in the original legislative text or intent, legal scholar William Eskridge argues that statutory interpretation changes in response to new political alignments, new interpreters, and new ideologies. It does so, first of all, because it involves richer authoritative texts than does either common law or constitutional interpretation: statutes are often complex and have a detailed legislative history. Second, Congress can, and often does, rewrite statutes when it disagrees with their interpretations; and agencies and courts attend to current as well as historical congressional preferences when they interpret statutes. Third, since statutory interpretation is as much agency-centered as judgecentered and since agency executives see their creativity as more legitimate than judges see theirs, statutory interpretation in the modern regulatory state is particularly dynamic. Eskridge also considers how different normative theories of jurisprudence--liberal, legal process, and antiliberal--inform debates about statutory interpretation. He explores what theory of statutory interpretation--if any--is required by the rule of law or by democratic theory. Finally, he provides an analytical and jurisprudential history of important debates on statutory interpretation.

Judging Under Uncertainty by Adrian Vermeule

Title Judging Under Uncertainty
Author Adrian Vermeule
Publisher Harvard University Press
Release Date 2006
Category Law
Total Pages 333
ISBN 0674022106
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In this book, Adrian Vermeule shows that any approach to legal interpretation rests on institutional and empirical premises about the capacities of judges and the systemic effects of their rulings. He argues that legal interpretation is above all an exercise in decisionmaking under severe empirical uncertainty.

Title Interpretation of Micromorphological Features of Soils and Regoliths
Author Georges Stoops
Publisher Elsevier
Release Date 2018-09-17
Category Science
Total Pages 1000
ISBN 9780444635426
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Interpretation of Micromorphological Features of Soils and Regoliths, Second Edition, provides researchers and students with a tool for interpreting features observed in soil thin sections and through submicroscopic studies. After an introduction and general overview, micromorphological aspects of regoliths (e.g., saprolites, transported materials) are highlighted, followed by a systematic and coherent discussion of the micromorphological expression of various pedogenic processes. The book is written by an international team of experts in the field, using a uniform set of concepts and terminology, making it a valuable interdisciplinary reference work. The following topics are treated: freeze-thaw features, redoximorphic features, calcareous and gypsiferous formations, textural features, spodic and oxic horizons, volcanic materials, organic matter, surface horizons, laterites, surface crusts, salt minerals, biogenic and pedogenic siliceous materials, other authigenic silicates, phosphates, sulphidic and sulphuric materials, and features related to faunal activity. The last chapters address anthropogenic features,archaeological materials and palaeosoils. Updates the first exhaustive publication on interpretation of micromorphological features, with some new chapters and with a larger number of additional references Covers related topics, making micromorphology more attractive and accessible for geomorphologists, archaeologists and quaternary geologists Includes thematic treatment of a range of soil micromorphology fields and broadens its applications Features input from a multi-disciplinary team, ensuring thorough coverage of topics related to soil science, archaeology and geomorphology

Title Restoring the Lost Constitution
Author Randy E. Barnett
Publisher Princeton University Press
Release Date 2013-11-24
Category Law
Total Pages 448
ISBN 9780691159737
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The U.S. Constitution found in school textbooks and under glass in Washington is not the one enforced today by the Supreme Court. In Restoring the Lost Constitution, Randy Barnett argues that since the nation's founding, but especially since the 1930s, the courts have been cutting holes in the original Constitution and its amendments to eliminate the parts that protect liberty from the power of government. From the Commerce Clause, to the Necessary and Proper Clause, to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, to the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Supreme Court has rendered each of these provisions toothless. In the process, the written Constitution has been lost. Barnett establishes the original meaning of these lost clauses and offers a practical way to restore them to their central role in constraining government: adopting a "presumption of liberty" to give the benefit of the doubt to citizens when laws restrict their rightful exercises of liberty. He also provides a new, realistic and philosophically rigorous theory of constitutional legitimacy that justifies both interpreting the Constitution according to its original meaning and, where that meaning is vague or open-ended, construing it so as to better protect the rights retained by the people. As clearly argued as it is insightful and provocative, Restoring the Lost Constitution forcefully disputes the conventional wisdom, posing a powerful challenge to which others must now respond. This updated edition features an afterword with further reflections on individual popular sovereignty, originalist interpretation, judicial engagement, and the gravitational force that original meaning has exerted on the Supreme Court in several recent cases.

Originalism As Faith by Eric J. Segall

Title Originalism as Faith
Author Eric J. Segall
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Release Date 2018-10-18
Category Law
Total Pages 250
ISBN 9781107188556
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Tracing the development of originalism, Eric J. Segall shows how judges often use the theory to reach politically desirable results.