chapter  7
11 Pages

Introducing Legal Theory

BySimon Chesterman, Clare Rhoden

In this chapter, the authors look at what theory is and the ways in which theoretical perspectives are used to better understand the law. Similarly, studies of the position of women in society—the way in which property rights were refused to women, the ways in which women are stereotyped by the law—challenge the assumption that men and women are equal before the law. The In the first level of analysis, the authors look at how the readers come to understand this notion of 'justice', while in the second level they look more deeply at the presumption that law can ever be objective and impartial. At a more theoretical level, other approaches look more generally at the claims of law to objectivity. Poststructuralism and postmodernism refer to broader theoretical approaches that are critical of claims to objectivity in general. These approaches challenge the authority (and author-ity) of legal discourse.