Jewish Law in the Making: Formalism and Realism in Jewish Legal Tradition

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Fall 2012 Course
Meets: Th, F 10:00am - 12:00pm in WCC Room 4059
2 classroom credits

This seminar will focus on the process of decision-making in Jewish legal tradition. Following a close analysis of the two major theoretical accounts of adjudication, Formalism and Realism, we will address the question, to what extent is halakhic decision-making a formalistic process? Various halakhic texts, from early rabbinic times to the present, will be discussed, and the complexity of considerations that halakhic authorities make in their judicial deliberations will be highlighted.

This course will meet the first six weeks of the term.

Subject Areas: Disciplinary Perspectives & Law , International, Comparative & Foreign Law .