Changing images of the legal past

Research Project

How does legal history move in time, and what determined the broad turns observable from the 19th century? This research starts from the premise that legal historiography cannot operate without a philosophical idea of ‘law’ which summarises how law should be created, by whom and how. Starting from this premise, legal history is better explained if we look to philosophers rather than legal historians. In fact, we find major philosophical figures at its main turning points: Friedrich v. Savigny, who in the early 19th century was considered the Kant of his discipline; Hermann Kantorowicz, who in the early 20th century reversed the earlier premises starting from neo-Kantianism and linguistic philosophy. And today, the current reorientation of methods and objectives should be explained, according to this approach, by a vast reformulation of its theoretical premises and in particular by a growing concern with the informational framework whereby the law operates.

Go to Editor View