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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

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Legalism: Rules and Categories (eBook)

ISBN13: 9780191068324
Published: November 2015
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: eBook (ePub)
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Mainstream historians in recent decades have often treated formal categories and rules as something to be 'used' by individuals, as one might use a stick or stone, and the gains of an earlier legal history are often needlessly set aside. Anthropologists, meanwhile, have treated rules as analytic errors and categories as an imposition by outside powers or by analysts, leaving a very thin notion of 'practice' as the stuff of social life. Philosophy of an older vintage, as well as the work of scholars such as Charles Taylor, provides fresh approaches when applied imaginatively to cases beyond the traditional ground of modern Europe and North America. Not only are different kinds of rules and categories open to examination, but the very notion of a rule can be explored more deeply.

This volume approaches rules and categories as constitutive of action and hence of social life, but also as providing means of criticism and imagination. A general theoretical framework is derived from analytical philosophy, from Wittgenstein to his critics and beyond, and from recent legal thinkers such as Schauer and Waldron. Case-studies are presented from a broad range of periods and regions, from Amazonia via northern Chad, Tibet, and medieval Russia to the scholarly worlds of Roman law, Islam, and Classical India.

As the third volume in the Legalism series, this collection draws on common themes that run throughout the first two volumes: Legalism: Anthropology and History andLegalism: Community and Justice, consolidating them in a framework that suggests a new approach to rule-bound systems.

Legal History, eBooks
Introduction: Rules and Categories: An Overview
1. Rules, Culture, and Imagination in Sanskrit Jurisprudence
2. Written Law as Words to Live By
3. Telling Stories About (Roman) Law: Rules and Concepts in Legal Discourse
4. Rules, Proverbs, and Persuasion: Legalism and Rhetoric in Tibet
5. 'Half-Free' Categories in the Early Middle Ages: Fine Status-Distinctions Before Professional Lawyers
6. In Praise of Disorder: Breaking the Rules in Northern Chad
7. A Polyphony of Legal Forms: The Case of Early Rus
8. Categories and Consequences in Amazonia
9. Legalism and the Care of the Self: Shari'ah Discourse in Contemporary Lebanon