This introductory chapter first sets out the book's purpose, which is to consider crucial questions about the relation between statutory and common law interpretation. Among these are: How far does the coverage of the common law figure in statutory interpretation, and how far do statutes affect common law development? How far does actual and legitimate statutory interpretation involve forms of reasoning associated with common law decision? In either domain, should judges self-consciously rely on their own notions of morality and justice? To what extent does the doctrine of precedent, so central to understanding common law development, apply to the interpretation of statutes? The chapter then discusses possible analogies to other forms of interpretation, limits of interpretation and appropriate strategies, relations of legislatures to courts for statutory interpretation, nuances about purpose, agency complications, values and their legal norms, and empirical realities and levels of courts.
Keywords: statutory interpretation; common law; courts; agency; values; legal norms
Chapter. 6403 words.
Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law
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