June 6, 2017

McCormack on How and When Canadian Courts Cite the Major Philosophers @QueensULibrary

Nancy McCormack, Queen's University Faculty of Law, has published When Canadian Courts Cite the Major Philosophers: Who Cites Whom in Canadian Caselaw. Here is the abstract.
This paper discusses the results of a search of Canadian case law from 1860 to 2016 to determine which major philosophers (born before 1900) were cited most and least often (or never), as well as which judges and courts cited them. The survey indicates that judges from every level of the Canadian courts have, over the years, made explicit references to major philosophic figures in their decisions. Many of the citations deal with eminently practical matters, but the courts have also thought it beneficial to call upon the philosophers for a variety of more strictly “philosophic” notions, for example, Thomas Aquinas on the doctrine of free will, and Bertrand Russell on logical constructions. Who cites whom and in what context and jurisdiction is set out in detail.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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