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Beyond Legal Minds

Sex, Social Violence, Systems, Methods, Possibilities

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William Brant

In this book, William Brant uncovers social causes of violence, in search of reductive measures. Multiple legal systems are explored as reducers and implementers of violence and threats, especially criminal justice systems. War, propagandizing, power, corporate and governmental involvement in social domination, statehood, dangerous ideologies, and tribal sexual domination are explored in many cultures. Various levels and methods are given for observing, measuring and analyzing how people think and behave regarding the law, including examples of comedy. A theoretical chapter presents legal theory in relation to conceptions of possibility and misconceptions. These ideas are applied to judiciaries, which expose winning strategies for lawyers’ desired verdicts. Dr. Brant accounts for the interconnections between sexual selection, legal systems and wars.

Appeal to the People's Court

Rethinking Law, Judging, and Punishment

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Vincent Luizzi

In Appeal to the People’s Court: Rethinking Law, Judging, and Punishment, Vincent Luizzi turns to the goings on in courts at the lowest level of adjudication for fresh insights for rethinking these basic features of the legal order. In the pragmatic tradition of turning from fixed and unchanging conceptions, the work rejects the view of law as a set of black and white rules, of judging as the mechanical application of law to facts, and of punishment as a necessary, punitive response to crime. The author, a municipal judge and philosophy professor, joins theory and practice to feature the citizen in rethinking these institutions. The work includes a foreword by Richard Hull, special Guest Editor for this volume in Studies in Jurisprudence.

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Grégor Puppinck

To which extent is it legitimate, in view of freedom of conscience and religion, to sanction individuals for refusing to take part in an activity they claim to be incompatible with their moral or religious convictions? To answer this question, this study first clarifies some of the concepts of conscientious objection. Then it examines the case law of international bodies and draws distinctions in order to differentiate several types of objections, hence identifying the evaluation criteria applicable to the respect that each one deserves. Finally, this study proposes indications as to the rights and obligations of the State in front of those different types of objections.

Freedom of Religion and Its Regulation in Nigeria

Analysis of Preaching Board Laws in Some States of Northern Nigeria

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Ahmed Salisu Garba

In Freedom of Religion and Its Regulation in Nigeria: Analysis of Preaching Board Laws in Some States of Northern Nigeria, Ahmed Salisu Garba provides an account of how states in Northern Nigeria have enacted laws to regulate religious preaching in the spheres of influence. The work examines the debates surrounding the laws and how the state in collaboration with dominant religious groups persecuted members of minority religious in the states.
The author applied an argumentative approach to raise and analyse issues relating to the reasonability of the laws in Nigeria, reasons for their enactment, judicial review mechanisms employed in the determination of the reasonability of the laws in democracies, and how they accord with the freedom of religion clause in the Nigerian Constitution.

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al-ʿAllāmah al-Ḥillī

Edited by Sayyid Amjad Hussain Shah Naqavi

Foundations of Jurisprudence: An Introduction to Imāmī Shīʿī Legal Theory is a critical edition of the Arabic text with a parallel English translation of Mabādiʾ al-wuṣūl ilā ʿilm al-uṣūl by al-ʿAllāmah al-Ḥillī, introduced, edited and translated by Sayyid Amjad H. Shah Naqavi.
Al-ʿAllāmah al-Ḥillī participated in the leading debates of his day and applied his vast erudition in philosophy, logic, and theology to the paramount subject of jurisprudence. This text presents an exemplar of the rich revival of Shīʿī scholarship in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries of the Common Era. Concise, yet comprehensive, this work sets the standard for the subsequent development and discussion of Imāmī Shīʿī legal theory, such that its influence can be traced through to modern times. This dual-text edition is indispensable for students and scholars of Imāmi Shīʿī jurisprudence.

Eine Kritik der kommunitaristischen Moralphilosophie

Offene Gesellschaft – geschlossene Gemeinschaft

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Harald Stelzer

"Gegenstand dieses Buches ist die Analyse und Kritik der Moralphilosophie des Kommunitarismus, deren grundlegende Fragestellungen nach wie vor von hoher Aktualität sind. Führt das liberalistische Verständnis von Mensch und Gesellschaft zur Auflösung sozialer Bindungen? Benötigen wir eine Revitalisierung der Gemeinschaften mit ihren jeweiligen Werten? Muss das Ideal der Neutralität des Staates aufgegeben werden? Der Autor zeigt in umfassender Weise, dass einige Annahmen des Kommunitarismus durchaus plausibel sind, dass sich seine zentralen Thesen aber nicht aufrechterhalten lassen. Der Kommunitarismus unterschätzt die potentiellen Gefahren zu enger Gemeinschaftsbindungen. Die ihm zugrunde liegende Philosophie erweist sich als relativistisch und darüber hinaus als widersprüchlich. In der Auseinandersetzung mit dem Kommunitarismus entwickelt der Autor eine Theorie der Normbegründung, die auf dem Verfahren des Überlegungsgleichgewichts sowie dem Fallibilismus beruht. Damit leistet er nicht nur einen wichtigen Beitrag zur Liberalismus-Kommunitarismus-Debatte, sondern darüber hinaus zur Weiterentwicklung einer problemlösungsorientieren Ethik, die in ihren Grundlagen auf die Politische Philosophie, Wissenschaftstheorie und evolutionäre Erkenntnistheorie Karl Poppers verweist."
Volker Gadenne, University of Linz


In Eine Kritik der kommunitaristischen Moralphilosophie. Offene Gesellschaft – Geschlossene Gemeinschaft analysiert Harald Stelzer die grundlegenden Aspekte der normativen Theorien von kommunitaristischen Autoren wie MacIntryre, Sandel, Taylor und Walzer. Basierend auf einer Rekonstruktion ihrer Kritik am Liberalismus und ihrer Sehnsucht nach der Gemeinschaft geht Stelzer auf die staatliche Neutralität ebenso ein wie auf die Reichweite der gemeinschaftlichen Einbettung des Individuums. Weiter diskutiert der Autor den Nah- und Fernhorizont der Ethik wie auch die relativistischen Konsequenzen eines auf der Annahme der Inkommensurabilität von Moralsystemen beruhenden kommunitaristischen Partikularismus. Das Buch endet mit einem Aufriss von Stelzers eigener Position, die beruhend auf dem Fallibilismus von Karl Popper und dem weiten Überlegungsgleichgewicht von John Rawls Moral als Problemlösungsprozess auffasst.

In A Critique of the Moral Philosophy of Communitarianism. Open Society – Closed Community Harald Stelzer challenges communitarian authors like MacIntryre, Sandel, Taylor, and Walzer by analysing main aspects of their moral theories. Based on the reconstruction of their critique of liberalism and alternative communitarian accounts, Stelzer looks on state neutrality as well as on the scope of the social embeddedness of the individual. He then proceeds to discuss the far and near horizon of ethics as well as the relativistic consequences of a communitarian particularism based on the underlying assumption of incommensurability. In the last chapter, Stelzer provides his own account of a problem solving ethics by combining Karl Popper’s fallibilism with the wide reflective equilibrium of John Rawls.

Defeasibility in Philosophy

Knowledge, Agency, Responsibility, and the Law

Edited by Claudia Blöser, Mikael Janvid, Hannes Ole Matthiessen and Marcus Willaschek

Defeasibility, most generally speaking, means that given some set of conditions A, something else B will hold, unless or until defeating conditions C apply. While the term was introduced into philosophy by legal philosopher H.L.A. Hart in 1949, today, the concept of defeasibility is employed in many different areas of philosophy. This volume for the first time brings together contributions on defeasibility from epistemology (Mikael Janvid, Klemens Kappel, Hannes Ole Matthiessen, Marcus Willaschek, Michael Williams), legal philosophy (Frederick Schauer) and ethics and the philosophy of action (Claudia Blöser, R. Jay Wallace, Michael Quante and Katarzyna Paprzycka). The volume ends with an extensive bibliography (by Michael de Araujo Kurth).

The End of Prisons

Reflections from the Decarceration Movement

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Edited by Mechthild E. Nagel and Anthony J. Nocella II

This book brings together a collection of social justice scholars and activists who take Foucault’s concept of discipline and punishment to explain how prisons are constructed in society from nursing homes to zoos. This book expands the concept of prison to include any institution that dominates, oppresses, and controls. Criminologists and others, who have been concerned with reforming or dismantling the criminal justice system, have mostly avoided to look at larger carceral structures in society. In this book, for example, scholars and activists question the way patriarchy has incapacitated women and imagine the deinstitutionalization of people with disabilities. In a time when popular sentiment critiques the dominant role of the elites (the “one percenters”), the state’s role in policing dissenting voices, school children, LGBTQ persons, people of color, and American Indian Nations, needs to be investigated. A prison, as defined in this book, is an institution or system that oppresses and does not allow freedom for a particular group. Within this definition, we include the imprisonment of nonhuman animals and plants, which are too often overlooked.

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Edited by Harry Lesser

The authors of these papers vary in age, nationality and professional background. They share a belief that all too often older people are not treated justly or fairly, and also a belief that this is particularly true with regard to a proper respect for their dignity as people and a proper allocation of medical and social resources. Their papers, in various ways, give evidence as to what is happening and arguments, based on philosophical ethics, as to why it is wrong. The authors also have a range of proposals, backed by argument and evidence, and drawing on factual material as well as philosophical argument, as to what could be done to improve the situation. This is a book for anyone, whether themselves elderly, looking after an older person, professionally involved in working with older people, or simply realising that one day they will be old, who wants to learn about what is wrong with the present situation and how it might be made better.

Social Justice, Poverty and Race

Normative and Empirical Points of View

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Edited by Paul Kriese and Randall E. Osborne

A clear understanding of social justice requires complex rather than simple answers. It requires comfort with ambiguity rather than absolute answers. This is counter to viewing right versus wrong, just vs. unjust, or good vs. evil as dichotomies. This book provides many examples of where and how to begin to view these as continuums rather than dichotomies.