The Philosophy of Law


The practice of law is a professional activity overseen by a government or independent regulating body. To practice law in a particular jurisdiction, lawyers must first complete a qualifying examination and obtain a special qualification such as a Juris Doctor degree. In addition to obtaining a Juris Doctor degree, lawyers can also attain a higher academic degree such as the Master of Legal Studies, Bar Professional Training Course, or Doctor of Laws. The legal profession is also regulated by the courts through legal forms of appointment.

Conceptual jurisprudence

Conceptual jurisprudence in the study of law is a branch of philosophy that seeks to analyze, classify, and describe entire bodies of law. This branch of philosophy often looks to other fields of knowledge, like history and morality, to understand the historical and moral basis of a particular legal concept.

Social fact theory

Social fact theory is a concept that describes the relationships between individual elements in social systems. These elements are defined by their nature and their relationship to each other. A social fact can be either pathological or normal depending on the social grouping in which it occurs. Social facts are thus defined in relation to a given social “type” or “species.” Durkheim sought to develop rules for the classification of social species through media between historians, philosophers, and different societies. He also sought to create a middle entity that acknowledges both the unity needed for scientific generalization and the diversity inherent in social facts.

Conventionality theory

The Conventionality Theory of Law is a social construct that argues that the validity of law is based on conventional social practices. It discusses the relationship between the rule of recognition and social practice among officials, and claims that these practices are the source of law.

Presumption in favor of liberty

The presumption in favor of liberty in law is an important principle of law, but it is also vulnerable. It rests on a misunderstanding of the relationship between liberty and other values, and is doubly vulnerable because liberty is a non-experiential good. Although people may claim to value liberty, they may prefer other values, and so they may not need the presumption of freedom.

Courts as neutrals

Neutrals who serve the courts as mediators or arbitrators must complete specific training and certification requirements. These qualifications include a specific amount of ADR training and continuing education.