This edition of Legal Research Manual builds on many previous editions. While the manual is designed principally for use with the first year legal research classes, upper year law students will also find it a useful reference.
Contents: Preface -- 1. Common object of legal research -- 2. Critical angles in legal research -- 3. Empirical legal research -- 4. Fundamental research -- 5. Humans in law's grammar -- 6. Explorative research -- 7. Epilogue: Horizons of legal research -- Glossary -- Bibliography -- Index.
Until quite recently, questions about methodology in legal research have been largely confined to understanding the role of doctrinal research as a scholarly discipline. Legal scholarship has been torn between, on the one hand, grasping the expanding reality of law and its context, and, on the other, reducing this complex whole to manageable proportions. The purely internal analysis of a legal system, isolated from any societal context, remains an option, but as law aims at ordering society and influencing human behavior, this approach is felt by many scholars to be insufficient. Consequently, many attempts have been made to conceive legal research differently. Social scientific and comparative approaches have proven fruitful. However, does the introduction of other approaches leave merely a residue of 'legal doctrine,' to which pockets of social sciences can be added, or should legal doctrine be merged with the social sciences? What would such a broad interdisciplinary field look like and what would its methods be? This book answers these questions, focusing on the growing need to concentrate on the various methods of legal research.
The aim of this book is to explain in clear terms some of the main methodological approaches in legal research. This is an edited collection, with each chapter written by specialists in their field, researching in a variety of jurisdictions. Each contributor addresses the topic of "lay decision makers in the legal system" from one particular methodological perspective, explaining how they would approach the issue and discussing why their particular method might, or might not, be suited to this topic.