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The Evolution of Normative Legal Scholarship: The Case of Copyright Discourse

Goold, P. (2012). The Evolution of Normative Legal Scholarship: The Case of Copyright Discourse. European Journal of Legal Studies, 5(2), pp. 23-29.


Legal scholarship’s central function is to provide normative advice about the law.
However, some academics have challenged the imp ortance of such scholarship.
Pierre Schlag argues that this function of legal scholarship is “unravelling” because
judges and legislators do not listen to academic opinions. This unravelling would
seem to be present in the field of copyright law where numerous instances suggest that
normative legal scholarship is ignored. However, copyright scholarship has evolved
to overcome this problem. Today the most influential copyright scholarship comes not
in law reviews or similar traditional academic outlets, but through publicly oriented
books and social media. Rather than aim normative advice to lawmakers, scholars
give their advice to the public generally. The public then hold the lawmakers
accountable for enacting bad laws. In this way, academics can retain their position as normative advice givers

Publication Type: Article
Subjects: K Law
Departments: The City Law School > Academic Programmes
SWORD Depositor:
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