LAWS 3042 Jurisprudence

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 200649

Coordinator Bradley Gooding Opens in new window

Description This unit engages students in the critical analysis of modern law through reflection on the major traditions and contemporary practices of legal theory. The Unit encourages students to examine and question key legal concepts that inform the law, such as power, morality and truth. Students will interpret, analyse, justify and critique issues and ideas using tools of critical reflection drawn from texts in legal philosophy, ancient to modern. In this way, they will develop tools that allow them to understand and uncover the foundational ideas and assumptions on which we base our view of the law and its consequences, leaving students well-placed to embark upon systematic inquiries in legal reform and further studies in legal theory.

School Law

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your HECS Band contribution amount via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) LAWS 1006 OR
LAWS 1008 OR
LAWS 1009

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:
  1. Evaluate theoretical perspectives on the conceptualisation of law and its institutions.
  2. Critique constructs of legal philosophy regarding the nature and role of law and legislation.
  3. Use the tools of jurisprudential legal theory to cultivate theoretical appreciations, and expressive critiques, of concepts of law as they manifest in practical and academic discourses.
  4. Propose solutions to problems in the philosophy of law through the interpretation, justification and critique of theoretical propositions.

Subject Content

- The Relationship of Law to Morality, Politics, and Justice
- The Autonomy of Legal Thought and the Professionalization of Legal Service
- The History of Jurisprudence
- The Positivism versus Natural Law Dichotomy, and its Evolution in Contemporary Jurisprudence
- The Role of Interpretation in Legal Reasoning and Adjudication
- Contemporary Challenges to the Ideology of the Anglophone Legal Tradition
- An Introduction to Postmodern Critiques of Western Law and Liberalism
- The Premises and Functions of Critical Feminist Theory and Critical Race Theory
- Global Challenges to Legal Thought, such as Legal Pluralism and Movements Towards Ecolegality
- Case Studies in the Transformation of Fundamental Legal Concepts (Rights, Jurisdiction, the Liberal Individual)


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Item Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Reflection 1750 words (min 250 words per reflection) 25 N Individual
Presentation 15-20 minutes 30 N Individual
Essay 3000 words 45 N Individual

Teaching Periods

2021-2022 Summer

Parramatta - Victoria Rd (Summer A)


Subject Contact Bradley Gooding Opens in new window

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