Document Type

Article

Comments

Book Review: The Legal System: A Social Science Perspective, 1976 Wisconsin Law Review 1333 (1976)

Abstract

"Bull" Warren used to begin his classes in Property I with the sentence: "The law is part art and part science, but a good deal more art than science." Lawrence Friedman has written a book, full of pith and vinegar, about the science of that art.

From the manifest subject matter-the description of legal systems in behavioral terms – one would expect the book to be aimed at an audience of lawyers, legal scholars, judges, social scientists, or a combination of these. My guess is that, whatever the aim was, the target actually reached is the general public, and more particularly undergraduate students of the social sciences. In form, the book stands midway between a semi-popular review, with comments, on the literature of law-&-social-science, and a semi-popular commentary on the problems of law-&-social-science, with supporting illustrative references. Nowhere are technical questions whether of legal doctrine, social philosophy, or method-pursued deeply enough to turn off an interested general reader, who should be attracted also by the cantankerously reasonable tone in which the author converses.

Date of Authorship for this Version

1976

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