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Legal Realism RegainedSaving Realism from Critical Acclaim$
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Wouter de Been

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804756594

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804756594.001.0001

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The Wealth of Historicism: Legal History in the Critical Mold

The Wealth of Historicism: Legal History in the Critical Mold

Chapter:
(p.56) Chapter Three The Wealth of Historicism: Legal History in the Critical Mold
Source:
Legal Realism Regained
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804756594.003.0003

The critical legal studies (CLS) movement has produced a great deal of historical research and has embraced two aspects of the realist approach to legal history: (1) their recognition of the historicity of legal notions, concepts, and rules; and (2) their use of history as an instrument of critique. This chapter outlines the way in which CLS scholars conduct historical research. It first describes the CLS historicist critique of law and their application of historical analysis. It then discusses the part of the realist legacy that CLS scholars explicitly reject—its embrace of a functionalist or evolutionary-adaptationist framework.

Keywords:   critical legal studies, historicism, historical research, realist, legal history, critique, law, functionalist, evolutionary-adaptationist framework

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