Saturday, March 10, 2007

Legal Scholarship: Official Post No. 1

Legal scholars -- but the phrase is perhaps presumptuous -- love to talk and write about legal scholarship. That's partly because they love to talk about themselves. That's partly because they are narcissistic. (And that makes them solipsistic.) Considerations such as these -- and others (e.g., my insecurity about the value of my own scholarship, fear of the scorn of others, fear of retaliation) -- have made me hesitate to talk and write very much about legal scholarship -- its condition, its prospects, its purposes, etc. But now that my academic credentials seem to be reasonably well established, it's time that I speak out about legal scholarship a bit more frequently and a bit more frankly than I have in the past. Inevitably, many of my remarks will be self-serving. But I will do my best to make my comments be of some interest to someone other than myself. Moreover, I promise that some of my comments will have a contrarian tone. But this post is just an opening salvo: it is only an announcement of my intentions. Later posts will be substantive.

N.B. I may have made a kind of promise. But caveat emptor: the promise I have made here is not enforceable. Do not rely on any assurance given here that I will comment on legal scholarship. I may change my mind.

What sorts of matters will I discuss? I'm not sure. But here are some possibilities:

1. Legal scholarship and science

2. Legal scholarship and religion

3. Legal scholarship -- in and out of the academy

4. Legal scholarship and narcissism

5. Legal scholarship and uncertainty

5. Legal scholarship and law practice

6. Legal scholarship and legal treatises

7. Legal scholarship and "theory"

8. Legal scholarship and evidential inference and factual proof

9. Legal scholarship and "artificial intelligence"

10. Legal scholarship and the rule of law

You will forgive me, I hope, if many of my forthcoming ruminations are suffused by notions that I have acquired over the years as a result of my study of evidence, inference, and uncertainty about (and in) the world. (But not all of my thoughts are the result of this sort of preoccupation.)
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