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Natural Law and Legal Reasoning
Journal Articles
  • John M. Finnis, Notre Dame Law School
Document Type
Publication Date
Publication Information
38 Clev. St. L. Rev. 1 (1990)
Much academic theory about legal reasoning greatly exaggerates the extent to which reason can settle what is greater good or lesser evil, and minimizes the need for authoritative sources which, so far as they are clear and respect the few absolute moral rights and duties, are to be respected as the only rational basis for judicial reasoning and decision, in relation to the countless issues which do not directly involve those absolute rights and duties. A natural law theory in the classical tradition makes no pretense that natural reason can determine the one right answer to those countless questions which arise for the judge who finds the sources unclear.

Reprinted with permission of the Cleveland State Law Review.

Citation Information
John M. Finnis. "Natural Law and Legal Reasoning" (1990)
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