Classic Readings and Canadian Cases in the Philosophy of Law, 1st edition

  • Susan Dimock

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Intended for upper year university students enrolled in philosophy of law courses.

Classic Readings and Canadian Cases in the Philosophy of Law is designed to increase student understanding of the role of law in society, as well as historical and philosophical debates surrounding major legal issues. Dimock strikes a balance between traditional philosophical subjects (i.e. the nature of law, morality, liberty) and practical issues of immediate interest to students (i.e. corporate pollution, sexual assault, hate crimes, pornography) by combining theoretical readings with current Canadian legal cases. The readings showcase experts in each subject area— both classical and modern, Canadian and international. Pedagogical aids are found throughout the text and include a glossary of legal and philosophical terms, an appendix of relevant sections of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, lists of additional readings, and extensive study questions.

Table of contents

Preface and Acknowledgements



1. Traditional Natural Law Theory: Law for the Common Good

Susan Dimock, "The Natural Law Theory of St. Thomas Aquinas II"

2. Legal Positivism I: Law as Command

John Austin, "The Province of Jurisprudence Determined"

3. Legal Realism: Law as Judicial Pronouncement

Oliver Wendell Holmes, "The Path of Law" ; Jerome Frank, "Law and the Modern Mind"

4. Legal Positivism II: Law as the Union of Primary and Secondary Rules

H.L.A. Hart, "The Concept of Law"

5. Law and Economics: Law as Efficiency

Susan Dimock, "Law and Economics"

6. Feminist Jurisprudence: Law as a Patriarchal Institution

Patricia Smith, "Feminist Jurisprudence" ; Catherine A. MacKinnon, "Toward Feminist Jurisprudence"

7. Two Cases for Discussion

R. v. City of Sault Ste. Marie 1978 R. v. Lavallee 1990


8. The Separation Thesis

H.L.A. Hart, "Positivism and the Separation of Law and Morals"

9. The Morality of Law

Lon L. Fuller, "Positivism and Fidelity to Law: A Reply to Professor Hart" ; "The Morality of Law"

10. Law as a System of Rights

Ronald Dworkin, "The Model of Rules" ; "Hard Cases" ; "Integrity in Law"

11. Two Cases for Discussion

R. v. Oakes 1986 Norberg v. Wynrib 1992


12. In Defense of Liberty

John Stuart Mill, "On Liberty"

13. Paternalism

Gerald Dworkin, "Paternalism"

14. Legal Moralism

Lord Patrick Devlin, "The Enforcement of Morals"

15. A Refutation of Legal Moralism

H.L.A. Hart, "Law, Liberty and Morality"

16. Four Cases for Discussion

R. v. Big M Drug Mart Ltd. 1985 R. v. Morgentaler 1988 R. v. Keegstra 1990 R. v. Butler 1992

Appendix: Selections from the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms 1982

Glossary of Legal and Philosophical Terms

Published by Pearson Canada (October 15th 2001) - Copyright © 2002