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Objectivity and the Rule of Law


  • Page extent: 264 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.356 kg


 (ISBN-13: 9780521670104)

What is objectivity? What is the rule of law? Are the operations of legal systems objective? If so, in what ways and to what degrees are they objective? Does anything of importance depend on the objectivity of law? These are some of the principal questions addressed by Matthew H. Kramer in this lucid and wide-ranging study that introduces readers to vital areas of philosophical enquiry. As Kramer shows, objectivity and the rule of law are complicated phenomena, each comprising a number of distinct though overlapping dimensions. Although the connections between objectivity and the rule of law are intimate, they are also densely multi-faceted.

• Clearly written with non-experts in mind by one of the foremost contemporary legal philosophers • Addresses problems that are not only of philosophical interest but also of practical importance • Philosophically rigorous, in the manner of the analytic tradition of philosophy


1. Dimensions of objectivity; 2. Elements of the rule of law; 3. Objectivity and law's moral authority.


'The argument is ingenious, and stated with clarity … Kramer's book shows plainly that legal positivism is not to be dismissed as mere pedantic quibbling and internecine disputation of no genuinely broad import. His book offers a vigorous aid to reflection upon the real and apparent attributes of law and legal systems, and how they might relate to questions of political morality.' Political Theory

'Professor Kramer disentangles the complicated notion of objectivity into six distinct conceptions, and differentiates the rule of law - the set of conditions necessary for any functioning legal system - from the Rule of Law - a moral judgment entrenched in the liberal-democratic tradition. … The strength of this compelling account is Professor Kramer's effortless interweaving of positive and normative analysis.' Harvard Law Review

'Matthew Kramer's new book tackles questions of objectivity and the rule of law with his characteristic erudition, depth and acute insight. It is one of the first in an exciting series entitled Cambridge Introductions to Philosophy and Law under the editorship of William Edmundson. … Kramer is most certainly to be congratulated for a fine work of scholarship.' Law Quarterly Review

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