Law and Culture

Law and Culture
Menachem Mautner

This book sets out to understand the phenomenon of the law by using the concept of culture. It focuses on two major approaches to the interrelationship of law and culture: an approach that sees law as constitutive of culture, and following that as constitutive of the mind categories and practices of human beings, an approach that sees the law created and applied by the courts as a distinct cultural system in the framework of which judges make their decisions. The book opens with two introductory chapters: one that presents the concept of culture and one that presents the major theoretical approaches to the question of the interrelationship of law and culture. The perception that the law made and applied by the courts is a cultural system leads to the insight that luck plays an important role in adjudication. The book offers some suggestions as to how to minimize this role. The book discusses the hermeneutics of Hans-Georg Gadamer that offers a detailed analysis of the process of meaning-making, and applies the major insights of this hermeneutics to the meaning-making processes that take place in the law. The books discusses in detail the cultural system of common sense and the important role it plays in the law: it is not possible to apply the doctrine of the law without filling it with knowledge as to how the world works borrowed from the cultural system of commons sense. The book also argues that an important feature of the culture of the law is its narrow perception of human existence. It is therefore important that lawyers read literature and history, and see plays and films, in order to remind them that the human situations with which they deal are more complex than what can be perceived by the culture of the law. The book also deals with the inter-relationship of law and culture in the context of the development of the doctrine of contract law and the doctrine of negotiable instruments law, as well as in the context of the interrelationship of legal culture and political culture. From the series Interpretation and Culture. Interpretation and Culture – A Series Edited by: Prof. Avi Sagi Man's nature is to interpret. Human beings, as individuals and as members of a society, are constantly engaged in the interpretation of their deeds, their values, their world and entire realm of activity. The act of interpretation is not the exclusive domain of scholars who research culture. Rather, it is first and foremost, common to every person in this world who strives to find meaning in all spheres of his activity. The act of interpretation is one of the distinguishing characteristics of human existence. Man as a creative thinker is not content with action alone. On the contrary, his acts are accompanied by explanation aimed at understanding. The art of interpretation is usually imbedded in the physical act itself. It is not confined to the light of awareness and methodological consciousness. However, at times interpretation becomes the main focus of study and our attention is diverted from practice to theory. This transition marks the beginning of a new interpretive approach to the study of different areas of human activity by means of deciphering, analysis and description. Such work is carried out by the theoretician and interpretation becomes an independent research discipline. The series ''Interpretation and Culture'' deals with interpretative instances. The books in the series treat the field of interpretation in various aspects: interpretation of literary, philosophical and theological texts, and interpretation of cultures and societies. Each and every book strives to propose an original, challenging interpretive reading.
Digital Edition ebook

Danacode:   110-20118 ISBN:  978-965-226-352-0 Language:   English Pages:   364 Weight:   595 gr Dimensions:  16X23 cm Publication Date:   05/2008 Publisher:   Bar-Ilan University Press

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