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Book Review


Statutory Interpretation is a comprehensive and nuanced account of some of the most fundamental features of the law: legal reasoning and interpretation. The book draws on philosophy, argumentative theory, linguistics, artificial intelligence, and dialectics to develop a robust theory of argumentation and pragmatics both in and outside of the law. The work is written by Douglas Walton, former Distinguished Research Fellow at the University of Windsor’s Centre for Research in Reasoning, Argumentation and Rhetoric; Fabrizio Macagno, professor at Universidade NOVA de Lisboa; and Giovanni Sartor, professor at the University of Bologna. This work represents a balance, most of all, of theoretical and practical understandings of statutory interpretation. It makes inroads into some of the most challenging abstract aspects of statutory interpretation, yet grounds itself in a space where applicability and practicality are the text’s raison d’être. Readers will come away from this book with a keen understanding of how they can interpret the law and, more importantly, how they can justify the frameworks guiding these interpretations.

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