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  1. H.L.A. Hart on defining a law as a subtype of an unclear type.Terence Rajivan Edward - manuscript
    H.L.A. Hart’s objection to defining a law as a subtype of an unclear type, or one of his objections, suffers from two oversights, which I identify.
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  2. Otwarta struktura prawa a ewolucja instytucji prawnych na przykładzie małżeństwa.Bartosz Biskup - 2023 - Archiwum Filozofii Prawa I Filozofii Społecznej 1 (34):18-31.
    Niniejsza praca ma na celu przedstawienie, w jaki sposób Hartowska koncepcja otwartej struktury prawa może posłużyć dla teoretycznej refleksji nad zjawiskiem ewolucji instytucji prawnych. W pierwszej części artykułu zostanie zaprezentowany sposób, w jaki rozumiane jest pojęcie „otwartej struktury”. Jest to presktyprywna interpetacja propozycji Herberta L.A. Harta, zaproponowana pierwotnie przez Briana Bixa, która „zakłada”, a nie „dowodzi” istnienie otwartej struktury. W drugiej części przedstawię, jak otwarta struktura prawa wyjaśnia aktywizm sędziowski bądź zmiany legislacyjne w stosunku do instytucji prawnych na przykładzie instytucji (...)
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  3. Hate Speech as Antithetical to Free Speech: The Real Polarity.Tiffany Elise Montoya - 2023 - Leiden, Netherlands: Brill. Edited by Will Barnes.
    I claim that hate speech is actually antithetical to free speech. Nevertheless, this claim invokes the misconception that one would be jeopardizing free speech due to a phenomenon known as "false polarization" – a “tendency for disputants to overestimate the extent to which they disagree about whatever contested question is at hand.” The real polarity does not lie between hate speech (as protected free speech) vs. censorship. Rather, hate speech is censorship. It is the censorship of entire sectors of the (...)
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  4. Functions of legal indeterminacy.Quentin du Plessis - 2022 - Journal of Contemporary Roman-Dutch Law 85 (2):240-247.
    That the law should guide those who are subject to it is both requirement and rationale of the law. Yet many legal norms are indeterminate and, therefore, incapable of guiding the conduct of their subjects. This note seeks to answer part of the conceptual puzzle implied by the use of such legal norms: does their indeterminacy serve some positive function? I proceed by way of literature review to identify seven functions of legal indeterminacy that scholars have identified but note that (...)
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  5. Interpretivism and the Limits of Law.Tomasz Gizbert-Studnick, Francesca Poggi & Izabela Skoczeń (eds.) - 2022 - Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.
    What does it mean to understand the law? This challenging book discusses whether and how understanding the law is qualitatively different from understanding a different, non-legal text or linguistic utterance, and whether knowledge of a language is sufficient to understand legal content in that language. Providing a comprehensive overview of current studies of interpretivism, both in the common and civil law systems, this book applies state of the art theories and tools of modern philosophy of language to shed new light (...)
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  6. Interpretivism and the Limits of Law.Tomasz Gizbert-Studnick, Francesca Poggi & Izabela Skoczeń (eds.) - 2022 - Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing.
    What does it mean to understand the law? This challenging book discusses whether and how understanding the law is qualitatively different from understanding a different, non-legal text or linguistic utterance, and whether knowledge of a language is sufficient to understand legal content in that language. Providing a comprehensive overview of current studies of interpretivism, both in the common and civil law systems, this book applies state of the art theories and tools of modern philosophy of language to shed new light (...)
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  7. Delimiting Legal Interpretation: The Problem of Moral Bias and Political Distortion—the Case of Criminal Intention.Izabela Skoczeń & Francesca Poggi - 2022 - Ratio Juris 35 (2):191-222.
  8. On Evaluative Imprecision.Teruji Thomas - 2022 - In Jeff McMahan, Timothy Campbell, Ketan Ramakrishnan & Jimmy Goodrich (eds.), Ethics and Existence: The Legacy of Derek Parfit. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 478-497.
    This chapter presents several arguments related to Parfit's notion of evaluative imprecision and his imprecisionist lexical view of population ethics. After sketching Parfit's view, it argues that, contrary to Parfit, imprecision and lexicality are both compatible with thinking about goodness in terms of positions on a scale of value. Then, by examining the role that imprecision is meant to play in defusing spectrum argument, it suggests that imprecision should be identified with vagueness. Next, it argues that there is space for (...)
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  9. Are Spectrum Arguments Defused by Vagueness?Teruji Thomas - 2022 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 100 (4):743-757.
    ABSTRACT I consider paradoxical spectrum arguments involving transitive relations like ‘better than’. I argue that, despite being formally different from sorites arguments, at least some spectrum arguments arise from vagueness, and that vagueness might often be the most natural diagnosis.
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  10. Sources of legal indeterminacy.Quentin du Plessis - 2021 - South African Law Journal 138 (1):115-151.
    Traditional analyses characterise or identify vagueness and ambiguity as the sole or primary sources of legal indeterminacy. In this article, I identify and characterise various other sources of legal indeterminacy. In addition to the semantic indeterminacy of vagueness and ambiguity, philosophers of language have identified conversational, pragmatic, and contextual indeterminacy, each of which is capable of generating a ‘hard case’ as applied to the legal sphere. Nor is all legal indeterminacy linguistic in nature. Following Henry Prakken, I identify non-monotonicity, or (...)
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  11. The subject of rights and responsibility in Ricoeur's legal philosophy.Guido Gorgoni - 2021 - In Marc de Leeuw, George H. Taylor & Eileen Brennan (eds.), Reading Ricoeur Through Law. Lexington Books.
    While the legal concept of a subject of rights is eminently an abstraction, Ricoeur’s philosophical challenge seeks to rethink its identity within the philosophy of action, in correlation with the ideas of capacity, attestation, and recognition. The terminology Ricoeur employs presents some significant marks of this theoretical stance, as he speaks of a “veritable” or a “real” subject of rights as distinguished from the purely formal one. I argue that Ricoeur’s approach to the legal subject attains its highest meaning in (...)
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  12. Strategic Indeterminacy in the Law by David Lanius (2019). [REVIEW]Hesam Mohamadi - 2021 - International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law 27 (2).
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  13. What Makes an Attack Sexual?Robert Morgan - 2021 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 38 (3):518-534.
    We recognise certain acts as ‘sexual assault’, ‘sexual violence’, or a ‘sexual offence’, often to offer strong moral condemnation or to prescribe legal sanction. A common feature of these attacks is that they impose nonconsensual sexual contact; they are sexual attacks. While there has been extensive discussion of consent to sexual contact and of the conditions under which consensual contact is sexual, there has been little investigation into what it is for nonconsensual contact to be sexual. The purpose of this (...)
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  14. Hrafn Asgeirsson, The Nature and Value of Vagueness in Law.Daniel Wodak - 2021 - Ethics 131 (4):777-781.
  15. The Nature and Value of Vagueness in the Law.Hrafn Ásgeirsson - 2020 - Oxford: Hart Publishing.
    Sample chapter from H. Asgeirsson, The Nature and Value of Vagueness in the Law (Hart Publishing, 2020), in which I present and partially defend a version of what has come to be called the communicative-content theory of law. Book abstract: Lawmaking is – paradigmatically – a type of speech act: people make law by saying things. It is natural to think, therefore, that the content of the law is determined by what lawmakers communicate. However, what they communicate is sometimes vague (...)
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  16. Strategic Indeterminacy in the Law, David Lanius, 2019. Oxford, Oxford University Press. xviii + 331 pp, £64.00. [REVIEW]Quentin du Plessis - 2020 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 37 (5):898-900.
  17. Disagreement about the kind law.Muhammad Ali Khalidi & Liam Murphy - 2020 - Jurisprudence 12 (1):1-16.
    This paper argues that the disagreement between positivists and nonpositivists about law is substantive rather than merely verbal, but that the depth and persistence of the disagreement about law, unlike for the case of morality, threatens skepticism about law. The range of considerations that can be brought to bear to help resolve moral disagreements is broader than is the case for law, thus improving the prospects of reconciliation in morality. But the central argument of the paper is that law, unlike (...)
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  18. War, vagueness and hybrid war.Jan Almäng - 2019 - Defence Studies 19 (2):189-204.
    It has frequently been observed in the literature on hybrid wars that there is a grey zone between peace and war, and that hybrid wars are conflicts which are not clear cases of war. In this paper, I attempt to illuminate this grey zone and the concept and nature of war from the philosophical discussions of vagueness and institutional facts. Vague terms are characterized by the fact that there is no non-arbitrary boundary between entities which lie in their extension, and (...)
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  19. The Sorites Paradox in Practical Philosophy.Hrafn Asgeirsson - 2019 - In Sergi Oms & Elia Zardini (eds.), The Sorites Paradox. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. pp. 229–245.
    The first part of the chapter surveys some of the main ways in which the Sorites Paradox has figured in arguments in practical philosophy in recent decades, with special attention to arguments where the paradox is used as a basis for criticism. Not coincidentally, the relevant arguments all involve the transitivity of value in some way. The second part of the chapter is more probative, focusing on two main themes. First, I further address the relationship between the Sorites Paradox and (...)
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  20. Strategic Indeterminacy in the Law.David Lanius - 2019 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    In this book I examine various forms of indeterminacy in the law and scrutinize (i.a. by way of game theoretical models) the conditions under which they can be strategically used. In particular, I analyze the advantages and disadvantages of indeterminacy in the wording of laws, contracts, and verdicts. Legal texts are particularly interesting insofar as they address a heterogeneous audience, are applied in a variety of unforeseeable circumstances and must, at the same time, lay down clear and unambiguous standards. I (...)
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  21. Theories of vagueness and theories of law.Alex Silk - 2019 - Legal Theory 25 (2):132-152.
    It is common to think that what theory of linguistic vagueness is correct has implications for debates in philosophy of law. I disagree. I argue that the implications of particular theories of vagueness on substantive issues of legal theory and practice are less far-reaching than often thought. I focus on four putative implications discussed in the literature concerning (i) the value of vagueness in the law, (ii) the possibility and value of legal indeterminacy, (iii) the possibility of the rule of (...)
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  22. Constraining Adjudication: An Inquiry into the Nature of W. Baude’s and S. Sachs’ Law of Interpretation.Izabela Skoczeń - 2019 - In David Duarte, Pedro Moniz Lopes & Jorge Silva Sampaio (eds.), Legal Interpretation and Scientific Knowledge. Springer Verlag. pp. 141-159.
    W. Baude’s and S.E. Sachs’s paper entitled “The Law of Interpretation” is a fascinating survey of a plethora of cases from the American common law system. The main conclusion of the article is extremely interesting from both philosophical and practical points of view. Namely, the authors claim that there exists something additional in the law that has not been identified before, and this is the law of interpretation. This law of interpretation is claimed to be a set of both written (...)
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  23. Implicatures Within Legal Language.Izabela Skoczeń - 2019 - Cham: Springer Verlag.
    This book proposes a novel, descriptive theory that unveils the linguistic mechanisms lurking behind judicial decisions. It offers a comprehensive account of the ongoing debate, as well as a novel solution to the problem of understanding legal pragmatics. Linguistic pragmatics is based on a theory created by Paul Grice, who observed that people usually convey more than just the amalgam of the meaning of the words they use. He labeled this surplus of meaning a “conversational implicature.” This book addresses the (...)
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  24. Does the Collapsing Principle Rule Out Borderline Cases?Johan E. Gustafsson - 2018 - Utilitas 30 (4):483-492.
    If ‘F’ is a predicate, then ‘Fer than’ or ‘more F than’ is a corresponding comparative relational predicate. Concerning such comparative relations, John Broome’s Collapsing Principle states that, for any x and y, if it is false that y is Fer than x and not false that x is Fer than y, then it is true that x is Fer than y. Luke Elson has recently put forward two alleged counter-examples to this principle, allegedly showing that it yields contradictions if (...)
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  25. Assessment sensitivity in legal discourse.Andrej Kristan & Massimiliano Vignolo - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 61 (4):394-421.
    We explain three phenomena in legal discourse in terms of MacFarlane’s assessment-sensitive semantics: incompatible applications of law, assessments of statements about what is legally the case, and retrospective overruling. The claim is that assessment sensitivity fits in with the view, shared by many legal theorists at least with respect to hard cases, that the final adjudicator’s interpretation of legal sources is constitutive of the applied norm. We argue that there are strong analogies between certain kinds of statements in legal discourse (...)
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  26. An Acquittal for Epistemicism.Hesam Mohamadi - 2018 - International Journal for the Semiotics of Law - Revue Internationale de Sémiotique Juridique 31 (4):905-928.
    Scott Soames argues that consideration of the practice of legal judgement gives us good reason to favor the partial-definition/context-sensitive theory of vagueness against epistemicism. Despite the fact that the value of power-delegation through vagueness is evidenced in practice, Soames says, epistemicism cannot account for it theoretically, while the partial-definition/context-sensitive theory is capable of it. In this paper, I examine the two possible arguments against epistemicism that can be extracted from Soames’s account: (i) an argument based on unknown obligations, and (ii) (...)
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  27. Rozstrzyganie sporów w oparciu o zasady dobra i słuszności versus orzekanie w „trudnych przypadkach” w świetle współczesnych koncepcji metaetycznych.Izabela Skoczeń - 2018 - Avant: Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies 9 (1):91-110.
    In the present paper, I argue against the claim that ex aequo and bono adjudication cannot be epistemically objective. I start with a survey of legal rules allowing the parties to resort to ex aequo et bono adjudication. Next, I argue that decisions taken on ex aequo et bono basis are not subjective for three main reasons. First, they are analogous to decision making in hard cases. Second, theories of practical reasoning and hybrid expressivism provide a precise theoretical account of (...)
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  28. Ex aequo et bono versus Hard Cases in the Light of Modern Metaethics.Izabela Skoczeń - 2018 - Avant: Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies 9 (1):91-110.
    In the present paper, I argue against the claim that ex aequo and bono adjudication cannot be epistemically objective. I start with a survey of legal rules allowing the parties to resort to ex aequo et bono adjudication. Next, I argue that decisions taken on ex aequo et bono basis are not subjective for three main reasons. First, they are analogous to decision making in hard cases. Second, theories of practical reasoning and hybrid expressivism provide a precise theoretical account of (...)
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  29. Habermas vs Fish – pytanie o możliwość porozumienia międzykulturowego.Michał Wieczorkowski - 2018 - Folia Iuridica Universitatis Wratislaviensis 7 (1):111-134.
    The purpose of the paper is to analyze the thesis that an agreement between representatives of two different cultures can and should be reached at a theoretical level. The author tries to verify the Theory of Communicative Action proposed by Jürgen Habermas in the light of philosophical reflections of American neopragmatist Stanley Fish. Habermas is one of the most important and widely read social theorists in the post-Second World War era. He is also one of the authors of the concept (...)
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  30. Problem aktywizmu i prawotwórstwa sędziowskiego w świetle współczesnych teorii interpretacji.Michał Wieczorkowski - 2018 - Warsaw University Law Review 17 (2):169-200.
    It causes many difficulties for jurisprudence to define the notion of judicial activism. At the very beginning it had rather a journalistic character, but but over time it has become a serious charge against these judges who act on the basis of their vision of what the law ought to be like rather than what it actually is like. On the ground of the polish legal theory the echoes of the dispute about judicial activism are reflected in the discussions about (...)
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  31. Intersex Diagnostics and Prognostics: Imposing Sex-Predicate Determinacy.Stephanie Julia Kapusta - 2017 - Topoi 36 (3):539-548.
    I offer a reconstruction of contemporary medical procedures of sex assignment for infants with intersex conditions. In the perspective adopted, sex assignment to intersexed newborns can be understood as a procedure that imposes determinate sex predicates. The account describes two stages of sex assignment. At the first stage of the process, the sex predicates ‘female’, ‘male’, or ‘intersexed’ are taken to denote genital morphology. Initial genital assessment of newborns imposes clear boundaries upon the extensions of these predicates through diagnostic schemes (...)
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  32. Why the Late Justice Scalia Was Wrong: The Fallacies of Constitutional Textualism.Ken Levy - 2017 - Lewis and Clark Law Review 21 (1):45-96.
    My article concerns constitutional interpretation and substantive due process, issues that played a central role in Obergefell v. Hodges (2015), one of the two same-sex marriage cases. (The other same-sex marriage case was United States v. Windsor (2013).) -/- The late Justice Scalia consistently maintained that the Court “invented” substantive due process and continues to apply this legal “fiction” not because the Constitution supports it but simply because the justices like it. Two theories underlay his cynical conclusion. First is the (...)
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  33. Interpreting Straw Man Argumentation.Fabrizio Macagno & Douglas Walton - 2017 - Amsterdam: Springer.
    This book shows how research in linguistic pragmatics, philosophy of language, and rhetoric can be connected through argumentation to analyze a recognizably common strategy used in political and everyday conversation, namely the distortion of another’s words in an argumentative exchange. Straw man argumentation refers to the modification of a position by misquoting, misreporting or wrenching the original speaker’s statements from their context in order to attack them more easily or more effectively. Through 63 examples taken from different contexts (including political (...)
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  34. Сучасна мовна ситуація (на матеріалі масового опитування 2017 року).Nataliya Matveyeva - 2017 - Language: Classic – Modern – Postmodern 3:52-58.
    Статтю присвячено проблемі аналізу сучасної мовної ситуації в Україні. Дослідження здійснено на основі найновішого соціолінгвістичного опитування ТОВ «Перша рейтингова система», яке проводено в лютому 2017 року. Проаналізовано мовну поведінку мешканців різних міст України для виявлення їхнього ставлення до мовних проблем, а також схарактеризовано їхні погляди на використання української та російської мов сьогодні та у перспективі.
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  35. Мовне законодавство України, Грузії та Молдови: порівняльний аспект.Nadiya Trach - 2017 - Language: Classic – Modern – Postmodern 3:77-85.
    У статті висвітлено особливості мовного законодавства трьох пострадянських країн – України, Грузії та Молдови. Окреслено історичну перспективу мовно-політичного дискурсу з часів розпаду Радянського Союзу. Особливу увагу приділено конституційному затвердженню статусу державних мов, нещодавньо ухваленим чи напрацьованим законам та законопроектам, ролі конституційних судів у регулюванні мовного питання. На додаток, розглянуто специфіку регулювання вжитку мов національних меншин.
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  36. Vague Comparisons.Cristian Constantinescu - 2016 - Ratio 29 (4):357-377.
    Some comparisons are hard. How should we think about such comparisons? According to John Broome, we should think about them in terms of vagueness. But the vagueness account has remained unpopular thus far. Here I try to bolster it by clarifying the notion of comparative vagueness that lies at its heart.
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  37. Introduction.Luke Elson - 2016 - Ratio 29 (4):353-356.
    A brief, opinionated summary of the papers in the Ratio special edition on incommensurability and vagueness.
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  38. Tenenbaum and Raffman on Vague Projects, the Self-Torturer, and the Sorites.Luke Elson - 2016 - Ethics 126 (2):474-488.
    Sergio Tenenbaum and Diana Raffman contend that ‘vague projects’ motivate radical revisions to orthodox, utility-maximising rational choice theory. Their argument cannot succeed if such projects merely ground instances of the paradox of the sorites, or heap. Tenenbaum and Raffman are not blind to this, and argue that Warren Quinn’s Puzzle of the Self-Torturer does not rest on the sorites. I argue that their argument both fails to generalise to most vague projects, and is ineffective in the case of the Self-Torturer (...)
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  39. Money Pumps, Incompleteness, and Indeterminacy.Johan E. Gustafsson - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 92 (1):60-72.
    In an alleged counter-example to the completeness of rational preferences, a career as a clarinettist is compared with a career in law. It seems reasonable to neither want to judge that the law career is at least as preferred as the clarinet career nor want to judge that the clarinet career is at least as preferred as the law career. The two standard interpretations of examples of this kind are, first, that the examples show that preferences are rationally permitted to (...)
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  40. Can Legal Practice Adjudicate Between Theories of Vagueness?Asgeirsson Hrafn - 2016 - In Geert Keil & Ralf Poscher (eds.), Vagueness and Law: Philosophical and Legal Perspectives. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 95–126.
    Scott Soames has recently argued that the fact that lawmakers and other legal practitioners regard vagueness as having a valuable power-delegating function gives us good reason to favor one theory of vagueness over another. If Soames is right, then facts about legal practice can in an important sense adjudicate between rival theories of vagueness. I argue that due to what I call the “Gappiness Problem” – raised by recent critics of the “communicative-content theory of law” – we have to give (...)
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  41. What the Epistemic Account of Vagueness Means for Legal Interpretation.Luke William Hunt - 2016 - Law and Philosophy 35 (1):29-54.
    This paper explores what the epistemic account of vagueness means for theories of legal interpretation. The thesis of epistemicism is that vague statements are true or false even though it is impossible to know which. I argue that if epistemicism is accepted within the domain of the law, then the following three conditions must be satisfied: Interpretative reasoning within the law must adhere to the principle of bivalence and the law of excluded middle, interpretative reasoning within the law must construe (...)
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  42. Vagueness and Law: Philosophical and Legal Perspectives.Geert Keil & Ralf Poscher (eds.) - 2016 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Vague expressions are omnipresent in natural language. Their use in legal texts is inevitable. A law phrased in vague terms will often leave it indeterminate whether it applies to a particular case. This places the law at odds with legal values. One of the fundamental pillars of the rule of law is legal certainty. The determinacy of the law enables people to use it as a guide and allows judges make impartial decisions. Vagueness poses a threat to these ideals. In (...)
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  43. Vagueness and Law. Philosophical and Legal Perspectives.Geert Keil & Ralf Poscher - 2016 - In Geert Keil & Ralf Poscher (eds.), Vagueness and Law. Philosophical and Legal Perspectives. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-20.
    Vague expressions are omnipresent in natural language. As such, their use in legal texts is virtually inevitable. If a law contains vague terms, the question whether it applies to a particular case often lacks a clear answer. One of the fundamental pillars of the rule of law is legal certainty. The determinacy of the law enables people to use it as a guide and places judges in the position to decide impartially. Vagueness poses a threat to these ideals. In borderline (...)
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  44. The Non-Conservativeness of Legal Definitions.Marc Andree Weber - 2016 - In Geert Keil & Ralf Poscher (eds.), Vagueness and Law. Philosophical and Legal Perspectives . Oxford, UK: pp. 189–203.
    What philosophers have in mind when they think about vagueness are sorites cases. Unlike vague scientific or artificial expressions, however, vague natural language expressions do not display the kind of vagueness that we associate with the sorites; they rather display what I call cluster vagueness. A non-trivial consequence of this is that those legal definitions that state precisifications of natural language concepts not only add aspects of meaning to existing expressions but also effectively change the meanings of these expressions. From (...)
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  45. On the Instrumental Value of Vagueness in the Law.Hrafn Asgeirsson - 2015 - Ethics 125 (2):425-448.
    It is natural to think that law ought not to be vague. After all, law is supposed to guide conduct, and vague law seems poorly suited to do that. Contrary to this common impression, however, a number of authors have argued that vagueness in the law is sometimes a good thing, because it is a means to achieving certain valuable legislative ends. In this article, I argue that many authors—including Timothy Endicott and Jeremy Waldron—wrongly associate vagueness with instrumental roles that (...)
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  46. Sex, Vagueness, and the Olympics.Helen L. Daly - 2015 - Hypatia 30 (4):708-724.
    Sex determines much about one's life, but what determines one's sex? The answer is complicated and incomplete: on close examination, ordinary notions of female and male are vague. In 2012, the International Olympic Committee further specified what they mean by woman in response to questions about who, exactly, is eligible to compete in women's Olympic events. I argue, first, that their stipulation is evidence that the use of vague terms is better described by semantic approaches to vagueness than by epistemic (...)
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  47. The Problem of Ethical Vagueness for Expressivism.Nicholas Baima - 2014 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (4):593-605.
    Ethical vagueness has garnered little attention. This is rather surprising since many philosophers have remarked that the science of ethics lacks the precision that other fields of inquiry have. Of the few philosophers who have discussed ethical vagueness the majority have focused on the implications of vagueness for moral realism. Because the relevance of ethical vagueness for other metaethical positions has been underexplored, my aim in this paper is to investigate the ramifications of ethical vagueness for expressivism. Ultimately, I shall (...)
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  48. Moral Vagueness: A Dilemma for Non-Naturalism.Cristian Constantinescu - 2014 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics: Volume 9. Oxford University Press. pp. 152-185.
    In this paper I explore the implications of moral vagueness (viz., the vagueness of moral predicates) for non-naturalist metaethical theories like those recently championed by Shafer-Landau, Parfit, and others. I characterise non-naturalism in terms of its commitment to 7 theses: Cognitivism, Correspondence, Atomism, Objectivism, Supervenience, Non-reductivism, and Rationalism. I start by offering a number of reasons for thinking that moral predicates are vague in the same way in which ‘red’, ‘tall’, and ‘heap’ are said to be. I then argue that (...)
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  49. Borderline Cases and the Collapsing Principle.Luke Elson - 2014 - Utilitas 26 (1):51-60.
    John Broome has argued that value incommensurability is vagueness, by appeal to a controversial about comparative indeterminacy. I offer a new counterexample to the collapsing principle. That principle allows us to derive an outright contradiction from the claim that some object is a borderline case of some predicate. But if there are no borderline cases, then the principle is empty. The collapsing principle is either false or empty.
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  50. Smooth and Bumpy Laws.Adam Kolber - 2014 - California Law Review 102:655-690.
    Modest differences in conduct can lead to wildly different legal outcomes. A person deemed slightly negligent when harming another may owe millions of dollars. Had the person been just a bit more cautious, he would owe nothing. Similarly, when self-defense is deemed slightly negligent, a person may spend several years in prison. Had the person been just a bit more cautious, he would have no criminal liability at all. Though the law must draw difficult lines, the lines need not have (...)
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