This information is for the 2019/20 session.
Dr Michael Wilkinson
This course is compulsory on the LLB in Laws. This course is available on the BA in Anthropology and Law, BSc in Philosophy and Economics, BSc in Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method, BSc in Philosophy, Politics and Economics and BSc in Politics and Philosophy. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit. This course is available to General Course students.
The aims of the course are: To introduce students to philosophical thinking about the law. To familiarise students with the main methodological, ontological, and normative issues in the study of law and its legitimacy. To provide students with knowledge of some of the most influential legal and political philosophers and their theories of the state and law. To encourage and enable students to think about doctrinal legal questions from a philosophical and critical perspective. To help students to develop legal reasoning skills by training them in abstract, philosophical arguments. Some of the themes that the course covers are: the social contract tradition (Hobbes, Kant, Rawls, Rousseau); the democratic legitimacy of the state and its law; Marxism and critical theory; Arendt’s political theory and its implications for law; methodology in jurisprudence; natural law; legal positivism; the rule of law and legality; the use and significance of principles in adjudication and legal reasoning.
20 hours of lectures and 9 hours of classes in the MT. 20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT. 1 hour of classes in the ST.
Students will be expected to write at least one essay per term.
Students are provided with outlines and readings for topics discussed in the Michaelmas and Lent Terms. For some introductory and background reading see: S. Veitch, E. Christodoulidis, and M. Goldoni, Jurisprudence: Themes and Concepts (3rd. ed), Routledge 2018; J.E. Penner and E. Melissaris, McCoubrey & White's Textbook on Jurisprudence, OUP 2012; Brian Bix, Jurisprudence: Theory and Context (3rd ed.), Thomson Sweet & Maxwell 2003.
Exam (100%, duration: 3 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.
Total students 2018/19: 171
Average class size 2018/19: 13
Capped 2018/19: No
Value: One Unit
Personal development skills
- Specialist skills