Conversation and argument concerning laws and legal situations take place throughout society and at all levels, yet the language of these conversations differs greatly from that of the courtroom. This insightful book considers the gap between everyday discussion about law and the artificial, technical language developed by lawyers, judges and other legal specialists. In doing so, it explores the intriguing possibilities for future synthesis, a problem often neglected by legal theory.
Analyzing the major components of law and legal procedure across both common and civil law, this book reveals how legal conversation on the ‘street’ contributes to our understanding of law as well as our democratic citizenship. Jan M. Broekman and Frank Fleerackers consider the impact of multiculturalism and the threat of terror on our impressions of legal conversation and the importance we place upon it, arguing that anarchism and legalism are hostile neighbors sharing many themes and motives. Exploring the meaning and sense of the concept of ‘street’ in ancient and modern times, the authors pose the question: is law just a discourse or should it be classified as one of the major narratives in human life?
Unique and discerning, this book will appeal to anyone interested in the language of law. Legal educators will find their scope broadened whilst researchers, activists and politicians will find themselves captivated by the focus on social activism and citizen motivation.