"The Decline of Natural Law: How American Lawyers Once Used Natural Law and Why They Stopped," 9/21
The Eleanor H. McCullen Center for Law, Religion and Public Policy welcomes
Author, The Decline of Natural Law: How American Lawyers Once Used Natural Law and Why They Stopped
Norman Abrams Distinguished Professor of Law, UCLA School of Law
Tuesday, September 21, 2021
Before the late 19th century, natural law played an important role in the American legal system. Lawyers routinely used it in their arguments and judges often relied upon it in their opinions. Today, by contrast, natural law plays virtually no role in the legal system. Some legal theorists might say that when natural law was part of a lawyer's toolkit, lawyers thought of judges as finders of the law, but when it was dropped out of the legal system, lawyers began thinking of judges as makers of the law.
In this lecture, Stuart Banner will discuss his recent book, The Decline of Natural Law: How American Lawyers Once Used Natural Law and Why They Stopped. The first book to explain how natural law once worked in the American legal system offers a look into how and why this major shift in legal thought happened, and focuses, in particular, on the shift from the idea that law is something we find to something we make. Commentary will be provided by Michelle Dempsey, Professor of Law and Harold Reuschlein Scholar Chair at Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law, and Jeffrey Pojanowski, Professor of Law at the University of Notre Dame Law School, followed by a Q&A session.
This lecture is approved by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board for 1 Substantive Distance CLE credit. Please note registration is required. Attendees will receive an email from Eventbrite with the Zoom link on the day of the event.