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Geometry & Mechanism: Material Metaphors and the Force of Uncertainty in Legal Thought

Author(s): Huerta, Monica

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Abstract: This essay takes up the metaphors through which realists and Critical Legal Studies scholars created an idea of legal formalism. These insistently material metaphors emphasized that the errors of so-called formalist jurisprudence arose from two things: first, the material location of law; and second, the purpose of law in relation to the material world. The essay shows how metaphor in particular was rhetorically suited to this kind of dual work. The material metaphors helped to mark and differentiate realists’ intellectual interventions. These metaphors were also part of the aim to reorient law toward the material world by resignifying its materiality. Last, this essay shows that this reorientation toward the material was forged through making material forces precisely out of the immaterial of contingency and uncertainty.
Publication Date: 18-Dec-2018
Citation: Huerta, Monica. "Geometry & Mechanism: Material Metaphors and the Force of Uncertainty in Legal Thought." Critical Analysis of Law 5, no. 2 (2018): 213-225.
ISSN: 2291-9732
Pages: 213 - 225
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Critical Analysis of Law
Version: Final published version. This is an open access article.

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