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Reading Law : The Interpretation of Legal Texts



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Pub. Date:
Thomson Reuters
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This is the edition with a publication date of 6/19/2012.

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In this groundbreaking book by best-selling authors Justice Antonin Scalia and Bryan A. Garner, all the most important principles of constitutional, statutory, and contractual interpretation are systematically explained in an engaging and informative style-including several hundred illustrations from actual cases. Never before has legal interpretation been so fascinatingly explained. Both authors are individually renowned for their scintillating prose styles, and together they make even the seemingly dry subject of legal interpretation riveting. Though intended primarily for judges and the lawyers who appear before them to argue the meaning of texts, Reading Law is sound educational reading for anyone who seeks to understand how judges decide cases-or should decide cases. The book is a superb introduction to modern judicial decision-making. Justice Scalia, with 25 years of experience on the Supreme Court, is the foremost expositor of textualism in the world today. Bryan A. Garner, as editor in chief of Black's Law Dictionary and author of Garner's Dictionary of Legal Usage, is the most renowned expert on the language of the law. Reading Law is an essential guide to anyone who wishes to prevail in a legal argument-based on a constitution, a statute, or a contract. The book is calculated to promote valid interpretations: if you have lame arguments, you'll deplore the book; if you have strong arguments, you'll exalt it. But whatever your position, you'll think about law more clearly than ever before.

Author Biography

Justice Antonin Scalia and Bryan A. Garner methodically explain textualism: the long-prevailing theory of legal interpretation whereby judges derive meaning exclusively from text and context-without imposing personal views that have no basis in the text.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. xix
Forewordp. xxi
Prefacep. xxvii
Introductionp. 1
Sound Principles of Interpretationp. 47
Principles Applicable to All Texts
Fundamental Principlesp. 53
Semantic Canonsp. 69
Syntactic Canonsp. 140
Contextual Canonsp. 167
Principles Applicable Specifically to Governmental Prescriptions
Expected-Meaning Canonsp. 247
Government-Structuring Canonsp. 278
Private-Right Canonsp. 295
Stabilizing Canonsp. 318
Thirteen Falsities Exposedp. 341
Afterwordp. 411
A Note on the Use of Dictionariesp. 415
A Glossary of Legal Interpretationp. 425
Table of Casesp. 443
Bibliographyp. 465
Indexp. 507
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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