Songs without Music: Aesthetic dimensions of law and justice by Desmond Manderson

by
September 2001, no. 234
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Songs without Music: Aesthetic dimensions of law and justice by Desmond Manderson

University of California Press, US$55 hb, 303 pp

Songs without Music: Aesthetic dimensions of law and justice by Desmond Manderson

by
September 2001, no. 234

This is not an easy book to read. It is crammed full of ideas, literary and musical allusions, and theories about law and justice. The author’s basic thesis – that law is a concept imperfectly realised, continuously reinterpreted, and always in flux – is not really controversial in legal circles in Australia today, let alone novel. The most influential legal scholar in Australia’s history, Professor Julius Stone, taught that simple truth to generations of law students in Sydney between the 1940s and the 1980s. Now, Desmond Manderson is the first director of the Julius Stone Institute for Jurisprudence at Stone’s old law school at the University of Sydney. He has taken up Stone’s grand theme, adding some fresh insights of his own. He has done so in this handsome book, beautifully published by the University of California Press. And there is much that is good and useful in it. But his gems are sometimes maddeningly hidden in a torrent of words that succeed in obscuring the ideas the author wants to get over to the reader.

Michael Kirby reviews 'Songs without Music: Aesthetic dimensions of law and justice' by Desmond Manderson

Songs without Music: Aesthetic dimensions of law and justice

by Desmond Manderson

University of California Press, US$55 hb, 303 pp

Buy this book

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