Due to weather conditions, all classes at Cardozo Law at 4 p.m. and later on March 5, 2015 are canceled.
The library is open until 9 p.m. The BMI Moot Court Competition is still taking place.
Jewish law is notoriously difficult to classify in terms that are familiar to secular thought, because it betrays aspects of both religious philosophy and epistemology and of law. In an effort to probe more deeply the significance of ordering a religion in legal terms, the CJL has undertaken a major book project, The Jewish Legal Tradition, which seeks to address the nature of the Jewish legal tradition: is it religious philosophy or law?
The Jewish Legal Tradition will use Western legal theory as its methodological lens in order to test whether the category of “law” can accommodate and illuminate the workings of a religious legal tradition. Individual chapters will treat the major rubrics of Jewish law by presenting a set of seminal texts, in translation, surrounded by an introduction that frames the central issues and a conclusion that deals with those issues broadly rather than definitively. Each chapter will also include questions for further study. Presentation and discussion of the texts will be historically responsible, taking into account geographical and chronological differences between texts, and will include texts from the Bible through the modern period. The Jewish Legal Tradition will distinguish itself from previous handbooks and introductions to Jewish law by explicitly bringing Jewish law into conversation with Western legal theory. This project is likewise ambitious in the scope of its intended audience, which includes the following:
The tentative table of contents is as follows:
Part One - Authority
Jewish Law and Natural Law
Does the Law Change?
Social, Spiritual, Religious, and other Purposes of the Law
Limits of Law – Halakhah and Aggadah/Kabbalah/Musar/Philosophy
Part Two – Interpretation, Discretion, Reasoning
Formalism, Teleology, Ontology
Rationale of the Commandments and Legal Reasoning
Principles, Rules, Minutiae
Law and Allegory/Symbolism
Law and Theurgy
Part Three – Legal Sources
Part Four - Unique Halakhic Concepts in Light of Legal Theory
Issura vs. Mammona
Mishpatim and Huqqim