The Enchantment Of Reason [NOOK Book]

Overview

The Enchantment of Reason is a lively critique of American legal thought and the American legal system?s deification of reason. In an attempt to understand the current malaise of American law and the depressed condition of American intellectual life in general, Pierre Schlag diagnoses what he believes is an epidemic of pathological reliance on the principle of reason. Contending that legal thinkers continually fail to recognize the aesthetic and ethical prejudices of rationalism, Schlag creates a genealogy that ...

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The Enchantment Of Reason

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Overview

The Enchantment of Reason is a lively critique of American legal thought and the American legal system’s deification of reason. In an attempt to understand the current malaise of American law and the depressed condition of American intellectual life in general, Pierre Schlag diagnoses what he believes is an epidemic of pathological reliance on the principle of reason. Contending that legal thinkers continually fail to recognize the aesthetic and ethical prejudices of rationalism, Schlag creates a genealogy that shows how the call to reason has become a manipulative vehicle of power, faith, and prejudice.
In examining the fierce resistance to questioning reason’s primacy, this renowned critic and professor of American law demonstrates how those who use and study the law perpetuate their own methodological blind spots. Claiming that reason has been endowed with a virtually mystical power to organize social life, Schlag unravels the seemingly rational world of judicial opinions, statutes, doctrines, and legal principles. In the process, he paints a shocking—and sure to be controversial—picture of the chaos and, indeed, violence of the American legal tradition.
This bold commentary on the irrationality of reason in American law and legal studies will interest not only legal scholars and philosophers but also serious thinkers across a broad disciplinary spectrum.

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Editorial Reviews

Richard Michael Fischl
...Schlag has set his sights on...the role of reason in law and legal theory....a brilliant and densely argued exploration of the consequences of...enchantment [with reason] for the professional practices of the legal academy....Schlag tugs the curtain back to explore the consequences of ...denial, and they are not pretty: "Reason is made to posit whatever is necessary for law to seem reasoned and rational....[But b]ecause law cannot be brought into conformity with reason, it is reason that is brought into conformity with law."
Jurist: The Law Professors' Network
Richard Michael Fischl
...Schlag has set his sights on...the role of reason in law and legal theory....a brilliant and densely argued exploration of the consequences of...enchantment [with reason] for the professional practices of the legal academy....Schlag tugs the curtain back to explore the consequences of ...denial, and they are not pretty: "Reason is made to posit whatever is necessary for law to seem reasoned and rational....[But b]ecause law cannot be brought into conformity with reason, it is reason that is brought into conformity with law."
Jurist: The Law Professors' Network
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822382775
  • Publisher: Duke University Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/1998
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 239 KB

Meet the Author

Pierre Schlag is Byron White Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Colorado School of Law. He is a coauthor of Against the Law, also published by Duke University Press.

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Table of Contents



Contents

Acknowledgments


Introduction: Following the Letter of the Law

The Purloined Letter


The Logic of the Frame


Two Kinds of Errors


Professional Solipsism


There's No Failure Like Success


Wherever You Go There You Are


The Object of Desire


The Lure of the Real


Comfort and Dread


Reason in Law


Itinerary



1
Faith in the Power of Reason

The stakes


The Rule of Reason


Central Command and the Big Tent



2
When Reason Runs Out

The Noble Scam


Nodding Heads Agree


Reason Rules



3
The Arguments for Reason

The Reasonableness of Reason


In Praise of Reason (The Argument from Virtue)


The Argument from Fate


Reason's Raison d'Être



4
Predicaments of Reason

Belief in, for, and through Reason


Critical Reflexivity and Frame Construction


Working at a Useless Task


Activity and order


Constitutive Vulnerabilities


Modesty


False Modesty: The Strange Case of Neopragmatism


Language Games about Language Games


Presumption



5
Divine Deceptions

Enchantment


The Ways of Enchantment


The Progressive Fallacy and the Last Laugh of Metaphysics


The Objectivist Aesthetic


The Subjectivist Aesthetic


The Roles of the Objectivist and the Subjectivist Aesthetic


“As If”Jurisprudence


The Transmigration of Authority


The Name of the Answer


When Reason Can't Stop Making Sense


From Virtual Law to Virtual Reason


Just the Facts



6
The Legal Self

Rationalism


Separating Self from Object


Separating Self from Context


Take This and Choose It


This Is Not a Stop Sign


False Empowerment


Free to Be Framed


Dominance and Submission



Epilogue: Reason without End

Boring and Dreary/Dreary and Boring


Nihilism


Life in the Grid—Running the Mazes


The Shallowness Problem


The Excessive Construction of Everything


Reason/Not



Notes


Index

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